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Caste

Bright as Night: Illuminating the Antinomies of ‘Gender Positive’ Solar Development

Citation:

Stock, Ryan. 2021. “Bright as Night: Illuminating the Antinomies of ‘Gender Positive’ Solar Development.” World Development 138. doi:10.1016/j.worlddev.2020.105196.

Author: Ryan Stock

Abstract:

India is undergoing a rapid transition to renewable energy; the Gujarat Solar Park typifies this transition. In addition to mitigating climate change, the Gujarat Solar Park boasts female empowerment through social development schemes. This manuscript is inspired by the following research question: To what extent are ‘gender positive’ processes and projects associated with solar development in India realized on the ground? Utilizing mixed methods fieldwork and drawing on literature from feminist political ecology, this paper demonstrates how the modalities of solar park development represent an antinomy of a nature-society relation. New configurations of labor under the political economy of solar have produced a gendered surplus population of landless peasants who are not absorbed into wage-labor employment in the solar park. Further, associated social development schemes actually disempower women, despite mandates of ‘gender positive’ outcomes by UN-based climate treaties to which this project is beholden. The opportunity to participate in one such scheme for female empowerment was reserved for only women of middle-to-high class status and those of dominant castes, thereby reproducing class and caste-based social power asymmetries. Female (dis)empowerment eclipses ‘gender positive’ guarantees of the solar park. This study highlights some unintended consequences of sustainable energy transitions in the Global South at the local scale. Designing development interventions related to climate change mitigation that boast ‘gender positive’ outcomes must be careful not to exacerbate gender disparities and economic exclusion in rural areas.

Keywords: energy transition, solar park, antinomy, feminist political ecology, gender, intersectionality

Topics: Caste, Class, Development, Environment, Climate Change, Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2021

Caste, Class and Gender in Determining Access to Energy: A Critical Review of LPG Adoption in India

Citation:

Patnaik, Sasmita, and Shaily Jha. 2020. “Caste, Class and Gender in Determining Access to Energy: A Critical Review of LPG Adoption in India.” Energy Research & Social Science 67. doi:10.1016/j.erss.2020.101530.

Authors: Sasmita Patnaik, Shaily Jha

Abstract:

Complex interrelationships between caste, class and gender in India define opportunities and access to energy for certain social groups differently than others. An understanding of access to energy through these lenses allows us to design energy policies differently, accounting for the socio-economic inequality in pricing, subsidies and implementation of policies. This paper attempts to evaluate access to energy through the lens of caste, class and gender. We use an integrated framework (Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI) ) to analyse Government of India's most recent and possibly the largest initiative for the provision of clean cooking energy - Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY), and assess the extent to which PMUY is able to enhance use of LPG by overcoming the existing caste, class and gender-based exclusion. The analysis of PMUY has been supported through theoretical insights from the literature and empirical evidence from India's largest multidimensional energy access database – ACCESS 2018. Though the scheme recognises the pre-existing inequities, our analysis suggests a focus on caste, class and gender in the implementation procedures would be imperative for the scheme along with others focused on LPG access to achieve its objective.

Topics: Caste, Class, Gender, Infrastructure, Energy Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2020

Gender and Land Dispossession: A Comparative Analysis

Citation:

Levien, Michael. 2017. “Gender and Land Dispossession: A Comparative Analysis.” The Journal of Peasant Studies 44 (6): 1111–34.  

Author: Michael Levien

Abstract:

This paper seeks to advance our understanding of the gendered implications of rural land dispossession. It does so through a comparative analysis of five cases of dispossession that were driven by different economic purposes in diverse agrarian contexts: the English enclosures; colonial and post-colonial rice irrigation projects in the Gambia; large dams in India; oil palm cultivation in Indonesia; and Special Economic Zones in India. The paper identifies some of the common gendered effects of land dispossession, showing in each case how this reproduced women’s lack of independent land rights or reversed them where they existed, intensified household reproductive work and occurred without meaningful consultation with—much less decision-making by—rural women. The paper also demonstrates ways in which the gendered consequences of land dispossession vary across forms of dispossession and agrarian milieu. The most important dimension of this variation is the effect of land loss on the gendered division of labour, which is often deleterious but varies qualitatively across the cases examined. In addition, the paper illustrates further variations within dispossessed populations as gender intersects with class, caste and other inequalities. The paper concludes that land dispossession consistently contributes to gender inequality, albeit in socially and historically specific ways. So while defensive struggles against land dispossession will not in themselves transform patriarchal social relations, they may be a pre-condition for more offensive struggles for gender equality.

Keywords: land grabs, gender, dispossession, displacement, enclosure

Topics: Agriculture, Caste, Class, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Patriarchy, Households, Land Grabbing, Rights, Land Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, West Africa, Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Gambia, India, Indonesia

Year: 2017

SDG 5: Gender Equality: A Precondition for Sustainable Forestry

Citation:

Arora-Jonsson, Seema, Shruti Agarwal, Carol J. Pierce Colfer, Stephanie Keene, Priya Kurian, and Anne M. Larson. 2019. “SDG 5: Gender Equality: A Precondition for Sustainable Forestry.” In Sustainable Development Goals: Their Impacts on Forests and Peoples, edited by Pia Katila, Carol J. Pierce Colfer, Wil de Jong, Glenn Galloway, Pablo Pacheco, and Georg Winkel, 146-77. London: Cambridge University Press.

Authors: Seema Arora-Jonsson, Shruti Agarwal, Carol J. Pierce Colfer, Stephanie Keene, Priya Kurian, Anne M. Larson

Annotation:

Summary:
Taking SDG 5 seriously in relation to forests brings to the forefront what is usually taken for granted in forest debates: people, their relationships to one another and to the forests that determine forest outcomes. In this chapter, we bring to light the invisible labour and relations that underpin good forest management. We show how systemic and contextual factors such as health, gender-based violence and unpaid care work by forest peoples in the forests and outside are crucial to the welfare of forests and forest dependent peoples. So far, little progress has been made in implementing SDG5 targets within forestry. Political will is needed to transform unequal relationships and to support demands for forest justice. There is a need to challenge privilege based on sex, class, ethnicity or caste and to destabilize inequitable micro- and macro-economic structures such as commodification and support democratic forest governance to work towards greater sustainability. It is also important to keep in mind that well-intentioned efforts, such as gender programmes can have adverse effects if not cognisant of contextual power relations. The welfare and dignity that achieving SDG 5 would bring to forest peoples and livelihoods is essential to ensuring better managed and sustainable forests. (Summary from original source)

Topics: Caste, Class, Economies, Care Economies, Environment, Ethnicity, Gender, Gender-Based Violence, Health, Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Year: 2019

Photons vs. Firewood: Female (Dis)Empowerment by Solar Power in India

Citation:

Stock, Ryan, and Trevor Birkenholtz. 2020. “Photons vs. Firewood: Female (Dis)Empowerment by Solar Power in India.” Gender, Place and Culture 27 (11): 1628-51.

Authors: Ryan Stock, Trevor Birkenholtz

Abstract:

Renewable energy transitions are accelerating in the Global South. Yet many large-scale renewable energy infrastructures are developed on public lands with unknown impacts on commons access and usage. A prime example of this is the Gujarat Solar Park (GSP) in India, which is one of the world’s largest solar photovoltaic facilities. The GSP is situated on 2,669 acres of previously common property, which has historically been used by female pastoralists for firewood collection. In this paper, we examine the following research questions: How do gender and caste power shape natural resource access in this region?; Does the Gujarat Solar Park exacerbate already gendered social-economic-political asymmetries? Our study utilizes a feminist political ecology framework to analyze the social dimensions of the GSP, drawing on recent work in this vein that uses a postcolonial and intersectional approach to examine the production of social difference through the spatial processes and political economy of solar energy generation. We find that the enclosure of public ‘wastelands’ to develop the Gujarat Solar Park has dispossessed resource-dependent women of access to firewood and grazing lands. This spatial dislocation is reinforcing asymmetrical social power relations at the village scale. Intersectional subject-positions are (re)produced vis-à-vis the exclusion of access to firewood in the land enclosed for the solar park. Affected women embody this dispossession through inter- and intra-village emotional geographies that cut across caste, class and gender boundaries.

Topics: Caste, Class, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology, Gender, Women, Infrastructure, Energy, Intersectionality Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2020

Conflict, Disaster and Changing Gender Roles in Nepal: Women’s Everyday Experiences

Citation:

K.C., Luna. 2019. "Conflict, Disaster and Changing Gender Roles in Nepal: Women’s Everyday Experiences." PhD diss., Wageningen University.

Author: Luna K.C.

Annotation:

Summary:
Nepal suffered from the civil conflict from 1996 to 2006 as the Communist party of Nepal (so-called Maoist) sought to end the monarchical system that had been in place for 240 years and establish a People’s Republic. The Maoist-party ideology was highly focused upon the structural transformation of the country and had a strong message about women’s empowerment. The conflict brought a dramatic shift in the social, economic, and the political situation of Nepal. In November 2006, the peace agreement was signed, the country then started the post-conflict reconstruction process, such as writing a new constitution, constitution assembly election, state restructuring, and the policy formation.
 
The Maoist conflict produced multiple gendered effects upon women’s everyday lives. One category of women joined as Maoist combatants in search of equality and empowerment and performed roles equal to men in the war. Another category of women stayed behind when the men fled from the war to the cities or neighbouring countries, and their husbands, fathers or sons were killed, or became rebels or disappeared in the war. Women non-combatants experienced a situation where men’s work shifted onto their shoulders and they performed dual roles; at home and outside.
 
After the earthquake happened on 25 April 2015 in Nepal, women were impacted in a different way. When men were killed or became disabled, were away, or lost income in the earthquake, women took over men’s roles and responsibilities, such as rescued their family members, searched for the food, accommodation, financial support, jobs, health care, including took care of the children and elderly people. At the same time, women were also involved in a multiple role during post-earthquake settings.
 
The conflict/post-conflict/disaster period produces gendered effects; thus, gender analysis becomes fundamental during this time to understand how women and men deal with the rapid gender role change in the context of crisis and its aftermath, when there is a certain return to the normal situation.
 
This thesis is about women and changing gender roles in Nepal. The study traces the gendered effects of the Maoist war and the earthquake on women’s everyday lives. It examines how women experience the impact of the Maoist war and the post-conflict era in relation to shifting gender roles, responsibilities, challenges, and new openings. The thesis then asks similar questions about women affected by the earthquake, that happened while the country was still struggling with post-conflict issues.
 
Chapter 1 presents the introduction, which offers an overview of the main concern of the thesis and the theoretical perspectives (the sexual division of labour and power, ideology of gender, structural factors, and the role of the policy) that inform it. Chapter 2 outlines the methodology (in-depth interview, focuses group discussion, participant observation, and key informant interview) applied to conduct this study.
 
Chapter 3 examined how the Maoist conflict in Nepal affected women ex-combatants and non-combatants, looking at changes in gender roles during and after the conflict particularly from the standpoint of livelihood challenges in the post-war period. Major findings indicate that changing gender roles largely depend upon everyday practice of sexual division of labour and power as it evolved during and after the conflict. It also shows that the conflict produced different and contradictory effects on both categories of women who experienced shifts in gender roles. In post-war settings, these changes were partly reversed, and especially ex-combatant women faced severe livelihood challenges and returned to traditional gender roles.
 
Chapter 4 investigated how the Maoist armed conflict in Nepal was a struggle for the emancipation of women and it particularly looked at how women ex-combatants were engaged with ideas of gender equality and women’s empowerment during the Maoist war and afterwards. It further explores what happens to women’s ideological drive as gender roles ‘shift back’ after the war. The results demonstrate that in the Maoist war women ex-combatants were strongly committed to the Maoist gender ideology and experienced empowerment through this process, as they adopted non-traditional roles and crossed gender as well as caste lines. However, in the post-war, they felt ambivalent empowerment because there was a lack of commitment from the Maoist party to issues of gender equality and at the same time the patriarchal structures continued intact and, in some ways, even strengthened, and women faced multiple exclusions. 
 
Chapter 5 looked at how women ex-combatants experienced the reintegration process in the aftermath of war. The study found that the reintegration programming of Nepal lack gender framework due to which woman encountered a range of challenges in the post-war period. Mainly, the challenges were two-fold: At the societal level; they struggled to gain recognition, and at the family level they negotiated/renegotiated to rebuild relationships and safety-nets.
 
Chapter 6 investigated what challenges women faced in the wake of the earthquake and how these were related to their gender position. It asks how gender roles changed in relation to the earthquake in Nepal. Findings illustrate that different categories of women faced the effects of earthquake differently, especially with regards to the intersectionality of gender and migration and family composition. The earthquake provided women a window of opportunity to change gender roles. On the other hand, women encountered great difficulties in addressing their everyday needs and experienced gender-based exclusion.
 
Chapter 7 synthesises the outcomes of the four substantive chapters, discusses the findings, and offers four recommendations for policy implications.
 
Table of Contents:
Acknowledgements
Chapter 1: Introduction
 
Chapter 2: Methodology
 
Chapter 3: Changing Gender Role: Women’s Livelihoods, Conflict and Post-Conflict Security in Nepal
 
Chapter 4:Living Maoist Gender Ideology:Experiences of Women Ex-Combatants in Nepal 79
 
Chapter 5: Everyday Realities of Reintegration: Experiences of Maoist ‘Verified’ Women Ex- Combatants in the Aftermath of War in Nepal
 
Chapter 6: Exploring Gendered Effects of the 2015 Earthquake in Nepal through Women’s Eyes
 
Chapter 7: Conclusion and Discussion

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Caste, Combatants, Female Combatants, DDR, Displacement & Migration, Environment, Environmental Disasters, Gender, Gender Roles, Gender Analysis, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Equality/Inequality, Households, Intersectionality, Livelihoods, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Peace Processes Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Nepal

Year: 2019

Gender-Responsive Sanitation Solutions in Urban India

Citation:

Hartmann, Miriam, Suneeta Krishnan, Brent Rowe, Anushah Hossain, and Myles Elledge. 2015. Gender-Responsive Sanitation Solutions in Urban India. Research Brief. Research Triangle Park: RTI Press.

Authors: Miriam Hartmann, Suneeta Krishnan, Brent Rowe, Anushah Hossain, Myles Elledge

Annotation:

Summary:
"In this research brief, we provide an overview of recent literature on women and sanitation in urban India. In particular, we consider possible improvements to the design and location of toilet facilities based on articulated needs and current solutions. We also highlight the need for further research evaluating the potential benefits of female-targeted interventions for women and their communities. The issues we consider are context specific, because women’s preferences vary across caste, religion, and region. Furthermore, the improvements we discuss respond primarily to existing gender norms. Broader efforts are needed to transform gender norms and meet the dual goals of higher sanitation adoption and better outcomes for women" (Hartmann et al. 2015, 1).


 

Topics: Caste, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Gender Equity, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Religion Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2015

A Natural Disaster and Intimate Partner Violence: Evidence over Time

Citation:

Rao, Smitha. 2020. "A Natural Disaster and Intimate Partner Violence: Evidence over Time." Social Science & Medicine 247.

Author: Smitha Rao

Abstract:

Natural disasters affect about 200 million people annually. Heightened intimate partner violence (IPV) is a gendered impact of these disruptive events. This study examines prevalence and correlates of IPV in four Indian states—TamilNadu, Kerala, AndhraPradesh, and Karnataka-before and after the Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004. Drawing on three waves of National Family Health Surveys of India-six years before, immediately after, and a decade after disaster, this paper evaluates if TamilNadu and Kerala (severely affected) exhibited higher prevalence of IPV than AndhraPradesh (moderately affected) and Karnataka (not directly affected). Logistic regression analyses determine association between IPV, state of residence (proxy for experience of disaster), and other covariates. To test hypotheses guided by vulnerability theory, IPV was regressed on socio-economic and demographic predictors for states across waves. IPV increased by 48% between 2005 and 2015. Increase in physical (61%) and sexual (232%) violence was highest in TamilNadu; emotional violence increased by 122% in Karnataka. State of residence was associated with IPV in the aftermath of disaster. In 2005, compared to Karnataka, odds of IPV were 98% higher in TamilNadu and 41% higher in Kerala. A decade after, odds were two times higher in TamilNadu than in Karnataka. Belonging to disadvantaged groups predicted higher odds of IPV in the year after disaster. Higher socio-economic status predicted lower odds of IPV, except in Kerala. Data point to ways in which socio-economic and demographic vulnerabilities factor into risk of IPV after disaster. Demographic factors of religion and caste appear to lose significance over time, but socio-economic factors continue to matter. Disaster response strategies seldom work without tackling long-standing inequities. Appropriate support systems for women and minorities in non-disaster situations are critical to ensure their conditions are not exacerbated.

Keywords: disasters, Intimate partner violence, gender, vulnerability

Topics: Caste, Class, Domestic Violence, Environment, Environmental Disasters, Gender-Based Violence, Religion, Sexual Violence Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2020

Living Maoist Gender Ideology: Experiences of Women Ex-Combatants in Nepal

Citation:

K.C., Luna, and Gemma Van Der Haar. 2019. “Living Maoist Gender Ideology: Experiences of Women Ex-Combatants in Nepal.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 21 (3): 434–53.

Authors: Luna K.C., Gemma Van Der Haar

Abstract:

Studies of women’s participation in civil conflict as armed combatants have attributed diverse motivations to such participation and examined the implications of participation for women’s empowerment in the aftermath. The authors contribute to these studies through an in-depth analysis of female combatants’ struggles for equality and empowerment during and after Nepal’s decade-long Maoist conflict. Scholars have argued that the emphasis of Maoist ideology in Nepal on the emancipation of women and on ending gender discrimination attracted a large number of women to the cause. Based on narratives of Maoist female ex-combatants, the authors investigate women’s engagement with Maoist ideology during and after the conflict. These narratives reveal that despite discourses of gender equality in Nepal’s Maoist struggle, promises around gender equality remain unkept in the period after the war. A reintegration program has offered women ex-combatants few options and has pushed women back into traditional gender roles. Struggles continue in this terrain. Incorporating intersectionality, the paper highlights how women ex-combatants’ gender identities intersect with caste and other social locations to produce diverse challenges for their lives.

Keywords: Maoist armed conflict, gender ideology, empowerment, women ex-combatants, post-conflict Nepal

Topics: Caste, Combatants, Female Combatants, DDR, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Intersectionality, Post-Conflict Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Nepal

Year: 2019

“Without Land You Are Nobody”: Critical Dimensions of Women‟s Access to Land and Relations in Tenure in East Africa

Citation:

Verma, Ritu. 2007. Without Land You Are Nobody': Critical Dimensions of Women‟s Access to Land and Relations in Tenure in East Africa. International Development Research Centre. 

Author: Ritu Verma

Annotation:

Table of Contents:
1. Dedication & Acknowledgements
 
2. List of Acronyms 
 
3. Introduction 
 
4. Conceptual and Methodological Points of Departure 
 
5. Common Themes and Issues Across Country Contexts
 
6. Country Specific Issues and Differences 
 
7. Conclusions: Identifying Gaps, Gender-Positive Action & the Way Forward 
 
8. Bibliography

Topics: Caste, Gender, Gendered Discourses, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Land Tenure, Livelihoods, Post-Conflict, Political Participation, Rights, Land Rights Regions: Africa, Central Africa, East Africa Countries: Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda

Year: 2007

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