Power, Gender and Social Change in Africa
Gender plays a hugely significant and too often under-considered role in predicting how accessible resources such as education, wage-based employment, physical and mental health care, adequate nutrition and housing will be to an individual or community.
According to a 2001 World Bank report titled Engendering Development—Through Gender Equality in Rights, Resources, and Voice, enormous disparities exist between men and women in terms of basic rights and the power to determine the future, both in Africa and around the globe. A better understanding of the links between gender, public policy and development outcomes would allow for more effective policy formulation and implementation at many levels. This book, through its discussion of the challenges, achievements and lessons learned in efforts to attain gender equality, sheds light on these important issues.
The book contains chapters from an interdisciplinary group of scholars, including sociologists, economists, political scientists, scholars of law, anthropologists, historians and others. The work includes analysis of strategic gender initiatives, case studies, research, and policies as well as conceptual and theoretical pieces.
With its format of ideas, resources and recorded experiences as well as theoretical models and best practices, the book is an important contribution to academic and political discourse on the intricate links between gender, power, and social change in Africa and around the world.
CHAPTER ONE TAKING THE FAST TRACK TO PARLIAMENT: Comparing
Electoral Gender Quotas in Eastern and Southern Africa Gretchen Bauer
Introduction During the past fifteen years large numbers of women have entered
have ruling parties with social democratic inclinations, or both (Morna 2004b).2
Clearly, gender-based electoral quotas are key to increasing women's legislative
representation with the factors cited in the studies above determining whether or
In terms of which type of quota is more effective in sending significant numbers of
women to parliament, the answer appears to be that steady increments ... Only
Namibia, with no formally adopted or legislated quotas, lags behind the other five
1Many observers have attributed Scandinavia's high representation of women
since the 1970s to the use of quotas. Dahlerup (2004, 18) notes, however, that in
Scandinavia quotas were never mandated by law; rather they were adopted by ...
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