The Praxis of Access: Gender in Myanmar’s National Land Use Policy

Citation:

Faxon, Hilary Oliva. 2015. “The Praxis of Access: Gender in Myanmar’s National Land Use Policy.” Paper presented at the Conference on Land Grabbing, Conflict and Agrarian‐Environmental Transformations: Perspectives from East and Southeast Asia, Chaing Mai University, June 5-6. 

Author: Hilary Olivia Faxon

Abstract:

In Myanmar, heated struggles around land grabs, acquisition, and formalization fail to acknowledge the complexity and heterogeneity of existing land relations. Gender dynamics are key to shaping these systems, and have been neglected in current research and policy. This paper examines women’s access to land and the emergence of gender discourse in land policy debates through a participant ethnography of the National Land Use Policy consultation process. I explore both ways in which land access is lived by rural women, and feminist contributions to land-based social movements. Attention to the differentiated yet interlinked spheres of the household, customary law, and land formalization enhances understanding of land politics, and women’s presence, gender concerns, and the nascent common identity of the pan-Myanmar women can catalyze effective advocacy for just land reform in Myanmar.

Topics: Development, Feminisms, Gender, Gendered Discourses, Households, Land grabbing, Rights, Land Rights, Property Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Myanmar

Year: 2015

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