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Women

Gender, Water, and Nutrition in India: An Intersectional Perspective

Citation:

Mitra, Amit, and Nitya Rao. 2019. “Gender, Water, and Nutrition in India: An Intersectional Perspective.” Water Alternatives 12 (1): 169–91.

Authors: Amit Mitra, Nitya Rao

Abstract:

Despite the global recognition of women’s central role in the provision, management, and utilisation of water for production and domestic use, and despite the close links between production choices, the security of water for consumption, and gendered social relations, the implications of these interlinkages for health and nutrition are under-explored. This paper seeks to fill this gap. It unpacks the gendered pathways mediating the links between water security in all its dimensions and nutritional outcomes, based on research in 12 villages across two Indian states. The findings point to the importance of the dynamic links between natural (land and water) systems and gendered human activities, across the domains of production and reproduction, and across seasons. These links have implications for women’s work and time burdens. They impact equally on physical and emotional experiences of well-being, especially in contexts constrained by the availability, access, quality, and stability of water.

Keywords: gender, water, agriculture, nutrition, food security, India

Topics: Poverty, Gender, Women, Gender Equality/Inequality, intersectionality, Health, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods, Security Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2019

An Ethos of Responsibility and Indigenous Women Water Protectors in the #NoDAPL Movement

Citation:

Privott, Meredith. 2019. “An Ethos of Responsibility and Indigenous Women Water Protectors in the #NoDAPL Movement.” American Indian Quarterly 43 (1): 74–100.

Author: Meredith Privott

Abstract:

This work builds upon Elizabeth Archuleta's (Yaqui) term “ethos of responsibility” by contextualizing it within the #NoDAPL movement and applies a cultural rhetorics methodology to constellate an understanding of an ethos of responsibility utilized by Indigenous women water protectors in the #NoDAPL movement, as seen in video-recorded interviews selected from the #NoDAPL digital archive. This study attempts to understand the rhetoric of Indigenous women water protectors through the lens of Indigenous feminism(s), Indigenous rhetoric(s), and Dakota/Lakota/Nakota history and worldviews. When speaking from an ethos of responsibility, the water protectors featured in this study locate agency in traditional teachings and in the experience of Indigenous women, including responsive care in/to the interconnectedness of life, the special role of women in the care of water, and the collective survival of Indigenous women in colonial and patriarchal violence.

Keywords: indigenous women, Indigenous feminisms, cultural rhetorics, water protection, Standing Rock, activism, decolonization, ethos, sexual violence, #NoDAPL

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Rights, Indigenous Rights Regions: Americas, North America Countries: United States of America

Year: 2019

First Casualties of the Green Economy - Risks and Losses for Low Income Women

Citation:

Tandon, Nidhi. 2012. “First Casualties of the Green Economy – Risks and Losses for Low Income Women.” Development 55 (3): 311–9.

Author: Nidhi Tandon

Abstract:

Nidhi Tandon argues that women are the first casualties to renewable energy. The current political/economic paradigm ensures that the interests of the global and export economies from the productive capacity of land and water are protected while small farming communities are not. She sees possibilities in the green economy only if it rests on the involvement and engagement of poor people.

Keywords: land rights, rural economy, poverty, value, ownership, ecosystems, challenges

Topics: Economies, Poverty, Environment, Climate Change, Gender, Women, Infrastructure, Energy, Political Economies, Rights, Land Rights

Year: 2012

Women’s Experiences of Food Insecurity and Coping Strategies in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, Bangladesh

Citation:

Ali, H. M. Ashraf, and Helen Vallianatos. 2017. “Women’s Experiences of Food Insecurity and Coping Strategies in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, Bangladesh.” Ecology of Food and Nutrition 56 (6): 462-78. 

Authors: H.M. Ashraf Ali, Helen Vallianatos

Abstract:

Despite advances in food production and distribution technologies, global food insecurity continues throughout parts of South Asia. Using ethnographic data collected from the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) in Bangladesh, this article reports on gendered and ethnocultural variations in experiences of food insecurity. Three key findings are that (1) regardless of ethnicity, the majority of the households in this study suffered moderate food insecurity; (2) food insecurity was higher among female-headed households; and (3) women’s means of coping strategies varied depending on household structure and ethnic identity. It is argued that indigenous women’s coping strategies were protective in comparison with Bengali women’s experiences.

Keywords: Bangladesh, CHT, coping strategies, food insecurity, women

Topics: Environment, Gender, Women, Households, Livelihoods Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Bangladesh

Year: 2017

Conceptualizing Subsistence as a Response to Capitalist Violence against African Indigenous Women

Citation:

Ahmed, Fathima. 2018. “Conceptualizing Subsistence as a Response to Capitalist Violence against African Indigenous Women.” Agenda 32 (4): 22-31.

Author: Fathima Ahmed

Abstract:

Africa, a continent whose economy is constrained by state and capital, fails to meet the basic needs of the population amidst worsening inequalities and violence. Subsistence producers globally, including indigenous small-scale farmers, pastoralists and hunter gathers, meet the basic needs for the majority. Two-thirds of these producers are women who work autonomously of the state and the market using relations of commoning. These are systems of sharing, collective labour and equal access to and care over nature. ‘Commoning’ is important to indigenous livelihoods, identity and survival, reflecting a strong relationship with the land. Resource-rich indigenous lands are as crucial to capitalist production as they are to anti-capitalist alternatives found in subsistence, and to life itself. African indigenous claims represent grassroots mobilisation for cultural self-determination in the wake of recent enclosures. Enclosures are turning commons into militarised zones, threatening the existence of indigenous peoples. These zones reflect a deliberate cultural packaging of misogynistic violence. Women are an important socio-ecological medium through which corporate-state violence impacts indigenous lives, livelihoods and bodies. As their reproduction and care responsibilities are land-dependent, ecological destruction harms women first. Using indigenous knowledge and practices, women are at the forefront of defending relationality with the land from capitalist destruction. They symbolise both an alternative and a threat to capitalism. As this article demonstrates, violence on the land and violence on women’s bodies are linked. Hence, feminist Lierre Keith contends that “militarism is a feminist issue, rape an environmental issue, and environmental destruction a peace issue” (Rebecca Weiss, ‘Sexism in the Olympics? You shouldn’t be surprised’, Patheos Catholic: Suspended in Her Jar, August 15, 2016). This activist article, using indigenous and anti-capitalist transnational feminism, highlights women’s agency and knowledge in providing life-centered and peaceful alternatives to the socio-ecological crisis across the continent, through a subsistence perspective.

Keywords: subsistence, indigenous women, commons, relationality, anti-capitalism

Topics: Economies, Environment, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Livelihoods, Political Economies, Rights, Indigenous Rights, Land Rights Regions: Africa

Year: 2018

Gender Equity, Citizenship and Public Water in Bangladesh

Citation:

Sultana, Farhana, Chandra Talpade Mohanty, and Sarah Miraglia. 2016. “Gender Equity, Citizenship and Public Water in Bangladesh.” In Making Public in a Privatized World: The Struggle for Essential Services, edited by David McDonald, 149-64. London: Zed Books Ltd.

Authors: Farhana Sultana, Chandra Talpade Mohanty, Sarah Miraglia

Annotation:

Summary:
“This study underscores the significance of a gendered perspective, the need to focus on women’s lived realities, and the importance of analyzing how politics of place shape access, delivery and preferences for public water. The study affirms equity, affordability, sustainability, and efficiency as generally desirable aspects of public water provision, but questions the means of creating and evaluating public systems to achieve these goals, and warns against entrenching local power hierarchies or further marginalizing the poor or exacerbating their exploitation. The study argues that attention to gender, experience, and place is crucial to any conceptualization of public service and water justice” (Sultana et al. 2016, 150).

Topics: Development, Economies, Poverty, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equity, Governance, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Political Economies Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Bangladesh

Year: 2016

The Politics of Water: Urban Protest, Gender, and Power in Monterrey, Mexico

Citation:

Bennett, Vivienne. 1995. The Politics of Water: Urban Protest, Gender, and Power in Monterrey, Mexico. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press.

Author: Vivienne Bennett

Annotation:

Summary:
Bennett unravels the politics of water in Monterrey by following three threads of inquiry.  First, she examines the water services themselves - what was built, when, why, and who paid for them.  She then reveals the response of poor women to the water crisis, analyzing who participated in protests, the strategies they used, and how the government responded.  And, finally, she considers the dynamics of planning water services for the private sector and the government in investment and management.  In the end, Monterrey’s water services improved because power relations shifted and because poor women in Monterrey used protests to make national news out of the city’s water crisis.
 
The Politics of Water makes a significant contribution to the emerging scholarship on regional politics in Mexico and to a deeper understanding of the Monterrey region in particular.  Until recently, most scholarly writing on Mexico spoke of the national political system as a monolithic whole.  Scholars such as Vivienne Bennett are now recognizing the power of local citizens and the significant differences among regions when it comes to politics, policy making, and governmental investment decisions. (Summary from original source)
 
Table of Contents:
1. Introduction
 
2. Urban Water Services: Theory and Planning
 
3. Buildup of a Crises: The Evolution of Monterrey's Water Service, 1909-1985
 
4. The Voice of the People: Protests Over Water Service in Monterrey Between 1973 and 1985
 
5. Gender, Class, and Water: The Role of Women in Protests Over Water
 
6. Agua Para Todos: The Government's Response to the Water Crisis
 
7. Conclusion: The Politics of Water

Topics: Development, Economies, Environment, Gender, Women, Gender Analysis, Governance, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods, Privatization Regions: Americas, North America Countries: Mexico

Year: 1995

The Effects of Water Insecurity and Emotional Distress on Civic Action for Improved Water Infrastructure in Rural South Africa

Citation:

Bulled, Nicola. 2016. “The Effects of Water Insecurity and Emotional Distress on Civic Action for Improved Water Infrastructure in Rural South Africa.” Medical Anthropology Quarterly 31 (1): 133–54.

Author: Nicola Bulled

Abstract:

The South African constitution ratifies water as a human right. Yet millions of citizens remain disconnected from the national water infrastructure. Drawing on data collected in 2013-2014 from women in northern South Africa, this study explores "water citizenship"-individual civic engagement related to improving water service provision. Literature indicates that water insecurity is associated with emotional distress and that water-related emotional distress influences citizen engagement. I extend these lines of research by assessing the connection that water insecurity and emotional distress may collectively have with civic engagement to improve access to water infrastructure.

Keywords: South Africa, citizenship, emotional distress, rural poor, water insecurity

Topics: Citizenship, Development, Gender, Women, Health, Mental Health, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods, Political Participation Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2016

Safe Access to Safe Water in Low Income Countries: Water Fetching in Current Times

Citation:

Sorenson, Susan B., Christiaan Morssink, and Paola Abril Campos. 2011. “Safe Access to Safe Water in Low Income Countries: Water Fetching in Current Times.” Social Science & Medicine 72 (9): 1522–6. 

Authors: Susan B. Sorenson, Christiaan Morssink, Paola Abril Campos

Abstract:

A substantial portion of the world's population does not have ready access to safe water. Moreover, obtaining water may involve great expense of time and energy for those who have no water sources in or near home. From an historical perspective, with the invention of piped water, fetching water has only recently become largely irrelevant in many locales. In addition, in most instances, wells and clean surface water were so close by that fetching was not considered a problem. However, population growth, weather fluctuations and social upheavals have made the daily chore of carrying water highly problematic and a public health problem of great magnitude for many, especially women, in the poor regions and classes of the world. In this paper, we consider gender differences in water carrying and summarize data about water access and carrying from 44 countries that participated in the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) program. Women and children are the most common water carriers, and they spend considerable time (many trips take more than an hour) supplying water to their households. Time is but one measure of the cost of fetching water; caloric expenditures, particularly during droughts, and other measures that affect health and quality of life must be considered. The full costs of fetching water must be considered when measuring progress toward two Millennium Development Goals--increasing access to safe drinking water and seeking an end to poverty.

Keywords: economic development, gender, Low-income countries, public health, sex differences, water, water carrying, women's health

Topics: Development, Economies, Poverty, Gender, Women, Health, Households, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, International Organizations, Livelihoods

Year: 2011

Local Organisation and Gender in Water Management: A Case Study from the Kenya Highlands

Citation:

Were, Elizabeth, Jessica Roy, and Brent Swallow. 2008. “Local Organisation and Gender in Water Management: A Case Study from the Kenya Highlands.” Journal of International Development 20 (1): 69–81.

Authors: Elizabeth Were, Jessica Roy, Brent Swallow

Abstract:

Provision of safe water supplies is a priority for the global community and for villages in Kenya. An extended case study from the highlands of Western Kenya shows that local communities can be successful in self‐organisation for improved water supply, but only by mobilising considerable amounts of investment resources and local collective action. Gender relations are crucial to success, with women having primary responsibility for water management, but more or less hidden roles in community groups. There are legitimate concerns that Kenya's new water laws and institutions may make it more difficult for local community groups to self‐organise, with additional biases against women.

Keywords: water, springs, women, gender, collective action, Kipsigis, legal pluralism, africa

Topics: Development, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Governance, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Political Participation Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Kenya

Year: 2008

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