View from the Margins: Sociology of Education and Gender


Chanana, Karuna. 2002. “View from the Margins: Sociology of Education and Gender”. Economic and Political Weekly 37 (36): 3717-21.

Author: Karuna Chanana


Sociology has a major role to play in making sense of contemporary educational transformations, changes effecting women's lives and relating these to the processes of social, economic and cultural changes in the wider society. This article looks at educational processes and outcomes within economic and social transformations and locates gender within the field of sociology.

Topics: Education, Gender, Women

Year: 2002

The Role of Basic Education in Post-Conflict Recovery


Barakat, Sultan, David Connolly, Frank Hardman, and Vanita Sundaram. 2014. “The Role of Basic Education in Post-Conflict Recovery". Comparative Education 49 (2): 124-142.

Authors: Sultan Barakat, David Connolly, Frank Hardman, Vanita Sundaram


The last decade has seen a growing recognition amongst international donors, development agencies, non-government organisations and academics of the vital role education can play in bringing about recovery following violent conflict, natural disaster and other crises. This has led to the development of increasingly targeted and sophisticated programme planning and management tools, for use by government ministries, UN agencies and non-governmental organisations in fragile contexts. Drawing on the 2010 independent study of UNICEF's Education in Emergencies and Post-Conflict Transition Programme, this paper explores the transformative role education can play in post-conflict recovery. It argues that while basic education assistance can have a catalytic role in helping states during the early stages of a transition out of violent conflict, there is the need for a better understanding of its role in building peace at the national, sub-national and community levels.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Education, Environment, Environmental Disasters, International Organizations, NGOs, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction

Year: 2014

A Reconstruction of the Gender Agenda: The Contradictory Gender Dimensions in New Labour’s Educational and Economic Policy


Arnot, Madeleine, and Philip Miles. 2005. “A Reconstruction of the Gender Agenda: The Contradictory Gender Dimensions in New Labour’s Educational and Economic Policy”. Oxford Review of Education 31 (1): 173-89.

Authors: Madeleine, Arnot, Philip Miles


This article reviews current interpretations of Labour's education policy in relation to gender. Such interpretations see the marginalisation of gender equality in mainstream educational policy as a result of the discursive shift from egalitarianism to that of performativity. Performativity in the school context is shown to have contradictory elements ranging from an increased feminisation of teaching and the (re)masculinisation of schooling. Also, whilst underachievement is defined as ‘the problem of boys’, the production of hierarchical masculinities and ‘laddishness’ by marketised schools is ignored. The policy shift towards performativity also masks girls' exclusion and the disadvantages working‐class girls face within the education system. The rhetoric of gender equality, although stronger in the field of post‐16 training and employment, is no less contradictory. The effects of New Labour are found in the aggravation of social class divisions within gender categories and the spiralling differences between male and female paths. Gender equality ideals in education are therefore shown to have a far more complex relationship to New Labour politics than previously thought.

Topics: Education, Gender, Gendered Power Relations

Year: 2005

Returning Home: Women in Post-Conflict Societies


Ni Aolain, Fionnuala, Naomi Cahn, and Dina Haynes. 2010. “Returning Home: Women in Post-Conflict Societies.” Baltimore Law Review 39.

Authors: Fionnuala Ní Aoláin, Naomi Cahn, Dina Haynes


This paper explores the situation of women returning to their homes and communities after their countries have experienced major conflicts. In that context, it assesses the range of barriers and challenges that women face and offers some thinking to address and remedy these complex issues. As countries face the transition process, they can begin to measure the conflict’s impact on the population and the civil infrastructure. Not only have people been displaced from their homes, but, typically, health clinics, schools, roads, businesses, and markets have deteriorated substantially. Moreover, many countries undergoing the post-conflict process were poor before the conflict even started; of the 20 poorest countries, three-quarters experienced conflict during the last 20 years of the twentieth century. Not all conflicts occur in the poorest countries (Ireland and the former Yugoslavia, for example), but its occurrence is highest in these countries. While the focus is on humanitarian aid in the midst of and during the immediate aftermath, the focus turns to development-based activities for the longer-term. The transition from short term reconstruction to longer term development, however, is not always smooth and has been subject to criticism, primarily due to the overlapping mandates of  the organizations engaged in the work and the lack of expertise held by  humanitarian organizations that begin engaging in reconstruction and even  longer term development work. For both short and long-term security, it is  critical to integrate development and post-conflict processes; and development activities provide a significant opportunity (and mandate) to ensure that  gender is central to the transitional process. Here we take gender centrality to be a first principle of response – namely planning, integrating and placing gender at the heart of the development response to conflict. First, many of the post-conflict goals cannot be implemented when the population is starving, homeless, and mistrustful of government-sponsored services. Women constitute the overwhelming proportion of refugees displaced by war; not responding to their specific needs to return home dooms the reconstruction process. Second, women are central to any socioeconomic recovery process. In many countries, the low level of women’s education, their lack of power, and certain cultural dynamics hamper improvements in women’s status and health as the country seeks to recover. For women, it too often turns out that the transformation is partial and exclusionary, and may frequently operate to cloak women’s ongoing repression and inequality with the blessing of the rule of law and the operation of international donors. For example, men may determine whether their partners use family planning; and men are usually in charge of the family budget, determining how much is spent on nutritious foods and health items such as well-baby visits. Studies have shown that when women are in control of the finances these items are better funded. The lived experience of women in conflicted and post-authoritarian societies suggests that the terms  “transition” and “postconflict” have much more territory to occupy that it has hitherto and that much work is needed to both ground and empirically quantify this fundamental difference of conceptualization. The paper analyzes gender and development strategies in the post-conflict country, and the nexus between the two. It first looks at the need to integrate development and post-conflict, and then turns to an analysis of why gender matters. It then looks at development as both a short and long-term process, articulating a new model of “social services justice” to describe immediate needs as the country begins the peace stabilization process. We argue that social services justice should become a critical aspect of any transitional justice and post conflict reconstruction model, and it serves as a gender central bridge between humanitarian aid and long-term development. Social services justice serves as an “engendered” bridge between conflict and security, running the temporal spectrum from humanitarian relief through post conflict to longer-term development, any of which is inclusive of transitional justice. Whether social services is justified as one form of transitional justice or as an early effort at development, its goal is to respond to the immediate needs of the population post-conflict, ranging from livelihoods to health to education.

Keywords: post-conflict, humanitarian aid, reconstruction, peace stabilization process, transitional justice, inequality, gender strategy

Topics: Development, Displacement & Migration, Education, Gender, Women, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Governance, Post-Conflict Governance, Humanitarian Assistance, Infrastructure, Justice, Transitional Justice, Livelihoods, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction

Year: 2010

In the Shadow of the State: Changing Definitions of Arab Women's 'Developmental' Citizenship Rights


Hatem, M. F. 2005. “In the Shadow of the State: Changing Definitions of Arab Women's 'Developmental' Citizenship Rights.” Journal of Middle East Women's Studies 1 (3): 20-45.

Author: M. F. Hatem


In this article, I argue that the power of the state in Arab societies, coupled with the absence or weakness of independent women’s organizations, explains the slow progress made toward deepening women’s citizenship rights. In the attempt to develop this particular argument, I will offer a historical overview of the roles that the state and/or women have played in pushing women’s “developmental” citizenship rights over the last sixty years. These rights, associated with the economic and political development of a society, include women’s access to education, health care, employment, and political participation. They lay at the heart of what the UN has identified since 1991 as the central basis of human development, whose goal “is to enlarge the range of people’s choices and to make development more democratic and participatory” (UNDP 1991:1).

Topics: Education, Gender, Women, Livelihoods, Political Participation, Rights, Women's Rights

Year: 2005

Coping Strategies of Sudanese Refugee Women in Kakuma Refugee Camp, Kenya


Gladden, Jessica. 2013. “Coping Strategies of Sudanese Refugee Women in Kakuma Refugee Camp, Kenya.” Refugee Survey Quarterly 32 (4): 66-89.

Author: Jessica Gladden


Thirty Sudanese women currently living in Kakuma Refugee Camp, Kenya were interviewed regarding their coping strategies in May 2011. The three central areas of discussion for the study were informal social support, the role of the women’s beliefs, and formal supports in the camp and how these items contributed to coping strategies. It was found that women were limited in their emotional coping strategies by their many physical needs. Much of the focus of their discussion was around their attempts to meet these physical needs. Formal supports, in particular the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, were the primary form of support available and utilised by the women in the study. Beliefs in God and education were the primary means of emotional support, with little assistance from friends and family.

Keywords: refugee, women, coping strategies, refugee camp

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Refugee/IDP Camps, Education, Gender, Women, Health, Mental Health, Humanitarian Assistance, International Organizations, Religion Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Kenya, Sudan

Year: 2013

‘Education Is My Mother and Father’: The ‘Invisible’ Women of Sudan


El Jack, Amani. 2012. “‘Education Is My Mother and Father’: The ‘Invisible’ Women of Sudan.” Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees 27 (2): 19-29.

Author: Amani El Jack


Education plays a significant role in informing the way people develop gender values, identities, relationships, and stereotypes. The education of refugees, however, takes place in multiple and diverse settings. Drawing on a decade of field research in Kenya, Sudan, Uganda, and North America, I examine the promises and challenges of education for refugees and argue that southern Sudanese refugee women and girls experience gendered and unequal access to education in protracted refugee sites such as the Kakuma refugee camp, as well as in resettled destinations such as Massachusetts. Many of these refugees, who are commonly referred to as the “lost boys and girls,” did not experience schooling in the context of a stable family life; that is why they often reiterate the Sudanese proverb, “Education is my mother and father.” I argue that tertiary education is crucial because it promotes self-reliance. It enables refugees, particularly women, to gain knowledge, voice, and skills which will give them access to better employment opportunities and earnings and thus enhance their equality and independence. Indeed, education provides a context within which to understand and make visible the changing nature of gender relationships of power.

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Refugee/IDP Camps, Education, Gender, Women, Girls, Gender Analysis, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality Regions: Africa, East Africa, Americas, North America Countries: Kenya, South Sudan, Uganda, United States of America

Year: 2012

Gender, Pastoralism and Intensification: Changing Environmental Resource Use in Morocco


Steinmann, Susanne H. 1998. "Gender, Pastoralism and Intensification: Changing Environmental Resource Use in Morocco." Yale Forestry and Environment Bulletin (103): 81-107.

Author: Susanne H. Steinmann


Through a study of the sedentarization of the Beni Guil pastoral nomads of eastern Morocco, this paper examines how gender interacts with environmental and socio-economic change. Based on extensive fieldwork with the Beni Guil, this paper demonstrates how gendered resource exploitation–in particular, the collection of mushrooms, medicinal plants, and fuelwood–is recast through sedentarization, urbanization, and commercialization. The case of the Beni Guil suggests that certain accepted theories of the consequences of settlement for nomad women and their local environments should be re-examined in order to understand better the past and present, and to plan for the future.

Topics: Education, Environment, Gender, Women Regions: Africa, MENA, North Africa Countries: Morocco

Year: 1998

Gender Issues in Environmental Sustainability and Poverty Reduction in the Community: Social and Community Issues.


Seniloli, M., L. Taylor, and S. Fulivai. 2002. "Gender Issues in Environmental Sustainability and Poverty Reduction in the Community: Social and Community Issues."Development Bulletin, no. 58, 96-98.

Authors: M Selinoli, L Taylor, S Fulivai


One of the most important lessons we have learned is that the consideration and inclusion of gender issues in environmental management and poverty reduction activities is crucial if development programs are to be relevant and sustainable. This paper explores some Pacific island experiences. Gender issues vary between Pacific island countries according to geographic locations, level of economic development, social and cultural norms and values, population, migration and emigration, religion, media, legal institutions, level of education, political climate, and environments. Different land ownership patterns, employment opportunities, economic policies and economic resources (agricultural, forest and fisheries resources) influence the roles of men and women in Pacific island countries. Short-term export of male and female labour, migration of Pacific islanders overseas, and rural to urban migration have all had an impact on the roles of men and women. Religious beliefs and the images of men and women projected by the media can either reinforce or weaken gender biases and gender stereotyping in Pacific island countries. Ratification of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and constitutional and legal provisions have affected men in different ways across the Pacific. The level and quality of education for boys and girls creates gender differences as do the gender stereotypes in the curriculum.

Topics: Economies, Poverty, Education, Environment, Gender, Livelihoods, Religion

Year: 2002

The Changing Role of Women in Sri Lankan Society


De Alwis, Malathi. 2002. “The Changing Role of Women in Sri Lankan Society.” Social Research 69 (3): 675-690.

Author: Malathi De Alwis


The article discusses the changes in the role of women in the Sri Lankan society. The education of women, their employment outside the home, their agitation for political rights, their assumption of political office, and others have been perceived as potential threats to women's traditional roles and status within such society at various moments in Sri Lankan history. The author has argued that the primary premise of such debates and discourses regarding the role of women have not changed. It was stated that women in this are also victims of domestic and outside violence such as war.

Keywords: gender roles, tradition, war widows, female-headed households

Topics: Domestic Violence, Education, Gender, Women, Political Participation, Rights, Violence Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Sri Lanka

Year: 2002


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