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Households

Land to the Tiller? Gender Relations and Land Reforms

Citation:

Jacobs, Susie. 1997. “Land to the Tiller? Gender Relations and Land Reforms.” Society in Transition 28 (1-4): 82-100.

Author: Susie Jacobs

Abstract:

This paper examines the gendered effects of different types of land tenure in land reform programmes, comparing individual household/family allocation with that in cooperatives/collectives. Summarising African, Asian and Latin American cases, it takes a broad perspective.

The results of land reforms along individual household lines are strikingly similar. All programmes assign land to household heads, usually husbands, following the populist stereotype of ‘undifferentiated peasant family farms’. This factor disadvantages wives, although others such as increased food security are beneficial. Many (not all) wives gain in terms of material comfort but may lose power within households, and come to have access to land only through men.

Cooperatives/collectives have become highly unpopular, due to a variety of factors, e.g. the experience of forced collectivisation; patronage-mongering and (for some husbands/fathers), fear of loss of control over female labour and sexuality. Despite real problems, some advantages exist for women within them; these include their greater visibility as cooperative/collective members who receive work points.

State support is necessary for a gender-aware land reform, but—as the Bodghaya struggle in Bihar highlights—so is ‘grassroots’ organisation that includes gender issues in more than a tokenistic fashion.

Topics: Gender, Gender Roles, Gendered Power Relations, Households, Rights, Human Rights, Land Rights, Property Rights, Women's Rights

Year: 1997

Gender in Road Construction: Experience in the Papua New Guinea Highlands

Citation:

Widana, Anura. 2018. “Gender in Road Construction: Experience in the Papua New Guinea Highlands.” Open Access Library Journal 5 (12). 

Author: Anura Widana

Abstract:

This article presents experiences in engaging women in road construction work in Papua New Guinea (PNG) Highlands. Providing labour for road construction is a new experience and a demand for tribal women in the highlands region. Women have never before worked on paid road construction works. However, similar to men, women also need cash to pay for goods purchased for the household. Although several road construction activities are in progress in a number of Pacific countries including PNG, there is less evidence reported on the engagement of women. This article initially begins a discussion on gender role in a patriarchy society and gender engagement in road construction program. The article highlights the need for and the process of getting women engaged in road construction works. Women engagement in road construction has been zero in the early years of road construction program which has been increased to 13% of the work force in late 2017. This massive increase is attributable to various strategies adopted by the project staff. The women’s new role in road construction, benefits accrued to both men and women and, recommendation to increase women participation in road construction is discussed. The paper is based mainly on the extensive knowledge gained by the author in working on road construction projects in the Papua New Guinea (PNG) Highlands. Where possible, the findings are supported by previous research.

Keywords: Papua New Guinea, Highland Region, gender, road construction

Topics: Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Households, Infrastructure, Transportation, Livelihoods Regions: Oceania Countries: Papua New Guinea

Year: 2018

Reproductions of Global Security: Accounting for the Private Security Household

Citation:

Chisholm, Amanda, and Maya Eichler. 2018. “Reproductions of Global Security: Accounting for the Private Security Household.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 20 (4): 563–82.

Authors: Amanda Chisholm, Maya Eichler

Abstract:

This article shows how private security households exist at the nexus of two foundational logics of contemporary warfare—militarism and neoliberalism. The celebration of neoliberalism and normalization of militarism allow the private security industry to draw upon the labor of eager contractors and their supportive spouses. This article develops a feminist analysis of the role of the private security household in global security assemblages. In what ways are households connected to the outsourcing of security work to Private Military and Security Companies (PMSCs), and how are these connections gendered? Through interviews with female spouses of former UK Special Air Services soldiers, now private security contractors, we demonstrate how the household is both silenced and yet indispensable to how PMSCs operate and how liberal states conduct war. These spouses supported the transition from military service to private security work, managed the household, and planned their careers or sacrificed them to accommodate their husband’s security work. Their gendered labor was conditioned by former military life but animated by neoliberal market logics. For the most part, the women we interviewed normalized the militarized values of their husband’s work and celebrated the freedom and financial rewards this type of security work brought. 

Keywords: private security, households, female spouses, women's labor, private military and security companies

Topics: Feminisms, Households, Livelihoods, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Militarism, Security

Year: 2018

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

Livelihoods for Women in Mindanao: A Post-Conflict Reconstruction Approach

Citation:

Santillan, Karina R. 2015. “Livelihoods for Women in Mindanao: A Post-Conflict Reconstruction Approach.” Asian Journal of Women’s Studies 21 (1): 15–30.

Author: Karina R. Santillan

Abstract:

The conflict in Mindanao has displaced over two million people in the period 2000 to 2009. As it subsides, the displaced return to their communities and begin the process of reconstruction. This paper studies how women contributed to the post-conflict reconstruction of Mindanao by engaging in livelihood activities. It explores five different livelihood intervention projects implemented in Mindanao between 2000 and 2010. The extent of women's contribution to post-conflict reconstruction is measured by identifying the benefits gained at household and community levels, generated by women's livelihood work. I argue that women's participation in such activities have led to economic, social and political reconstruction of the communities affected by in Mindanao. This paper also compares the women's livelihoods approach with other reconstruction strategies. It also illustrates that interventions for reconstruction therefore must include livelihood programs that encourage women's participation, as exemplified by the experience of Mindanao.

Keywords: Mindanao, women's livelihoods, post-conflict reconstruction, internally displaced persons (IDPs)

Topics: Development, Displacement & Migration, IDPs, Economies, Economic Inequality, Gender, Women, conflict, Post-conflict Governance, Households, Livelihoods, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction Regions: Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Philippines

Year: 2015

Mundane Heroines: Conflict, Ethnicity, Gender, and Female Headship in Eastern Sri Lanka

Citation:

Ruwanpura, Kanchana N., and Jane Humphries. 2004. “Mundane Heroines: Conflict, Ethnicity, Gender, and Female Headship in Eastern Sri Lanka.” Feminist Economics 10 (2): 173–205.

Authors: Kanchana N. Ruwanpura, Jane Humphries

Abstract:

For the last twenty years, eastern Sri Lanka has witnessed a bitter and bloody civil conflict. This paper explores the experience of female-headed households in the region. Only partially the product of war, such households cannot be bundled together as a social problem with a single solution. Our study endorses the feminist suspicion of falsely homogenizing accounts of women's lives and suggests instead an alternative emphasis on the many ways in which gendered relations of dominance and subordination are maintained. With its co-existing Muslim, Tamil, and Sinhala groups, eastern Sri Lanka facilitates the exploration of ethnicity as a source of variation. The households included in this study share a common structure and face the same economic problems, yet ethnic differences divide them. The paper charts the problems, strategies, and partial triumphs of these lone mothers and proposes policies to help them in their mundane but heroic struggle.

Keywords: female headship, gender, ethnicity, eastern Sri Lanka, conflict, kinship and community

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Economies, Ethnicity, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Households, Post-Conflict Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Sri Lanka

Year: 2004

Land Reform: Still a Goal Worth Pursuing for Rural Women?

Citation:

Jacobs, Susie. 2002. “Land Reform: Still a Goal Worth Pursuing for Rural Women?” Journal of International Development 14 (6): 887-98. 

Author: Susie Jacobs

Abstract:

Land reform has recently become a topic of interest to the media. Given historical experience and current changes, are land reform policies still worthwhile objects of struggle for rural women? The article discusses arguments ‘against’: for instance, women have been excluded from most past land reforms, and many rural people have had to diversify their livelihood bases, so that agriculture has diminished in importance. Despite these and other points, the article argues that land reform which includes women would be of great benefit: it would increase food security, would allow wives to keep better control over their own incomes, and would increase women's status more generally.

Topics: Economies, Gender, Women, Households, Livelihoods

Year: 2002

Empowering Women: Land and Property Rights in Latin America

Citation:

Deere, Carmen Diana, and Magdalena León. 2001. Empowering Women: Land and Property Rights in Latin America. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press.

Authors: Carmen Diana Deere, Magdalena León

Annotation:

Summary: 
The expansion of married women’s property rights was a main achievement of the first wave of feminism in Latin America. As Carmen Diana Deere and Magdalena Leon reveal, however, the disjuncture between rights and actual ownership remains vast. This is particularly true in rural areas, where the distribution of land between men and women is highly unequal. In their pioneering, twelve-country comparative study, the authors argue that property ownership is directly related to women’s bargaining power within the household and community, point out changes resulting from recent gender-progressive legislation, and identify additional areas for future reform, including inheritance rights of wives. (Summary from JSTOR)

Topics: Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Households, Rights, Land Rights, Property Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Americas, Central America, South America

Year: 2001

Mastering the Struggle: Gender, Actors and Agrarian Change in a Mexican Ejido

Citation:

Brunt, Dorien. 1992. “Mastering the Struggle: Gender, Actors and Agrarian Change in a Mexican Ejido.” PhD diss., the Agricultural University in Wageningen.

Author: Dorien Brunt

Annotation:

Summary:
"This book is about power and about the social order, but it is approached through the struggles of men and women, members of an ejido in Western Mexico (highly integrated in national and international product and labour markets) to improve the quality of their lives. It explores the possibilities they see and the limitations they are confronted with, and how they try to overcome these limitations. As James Scott (1985:XV-XVII) puts it: 'Most subordinate classes throughout most of history have rarely been afforded the luxury of open political activity. Most subordinated classes are far less interested in changing the larger structures and the law than what Hobsbawm has appropriately called "working the system... to their minimum disadvantage. ... For these reasons it seems to be more important to understand what we might call everyday forms of ... resistance.'
 
"In this case, the everyday struggles are about access to land, access to credit and irrigation water, and keeping control over the land and the production process. But by no means are they only economic struggles, they are also struggles over influence, identity, ideology, creating support. Nor are these struggles only between the local population and the 'representatives of die state', but also take place within the local population itself, between men and women, between those with and those without land, between older and younger generations" (Brunt 1992, 4). 

Topics: Age, Class, Economies, Economic Inequality, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Households, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods, Rights, Land Rights Regions: Americas, North America Countries: Mexico

Year: 1992

Property Rights and Gender Bias: Evidence from Land Reform in West Bengal

Citation:

Bhalotra, Sonia, Abhishek Chakravarty, Dilip Mookherjee, and Francisco J. Pino. 2016. “Property Rights and Gender Bias: Evidence from Land Reform in West Bengal.” IZA Discussion Paper 9930, The Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), Bonn, Germany. 

Authors: Sonia Bhalotra, Abhishek Chakravarty, Dilip Mookherjee, Francisco J. Pino

Abstract:

While land reforms are typically pursued in order to raise productivity and reduce inequality across households, an unintended consequence may be increased within-household gender inequality. We analyse a tenancy registration programme in West Bengal, and find that it increased child survival and reduced fertility. However, we also find that it intensified son preference in families without a first-born son to inherit the land title. These families exhibit no reduction in fertility, an increase in the probability that a subsequent birth is male, and a substantial increase in the survival advantage of subsequent sons over daughters.

Keywords: land reform, gender, infant mortality, sex ratio, fertility, Property Rights

Topics: Development, Economies, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Health, Reproductive Health, Households, Rights, Land Rights Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2016

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