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Opening minds, improving lives: Education and women's empowerment in honduras

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Abstract

Juanita was seventeen years old and pregnant with her first child when she began an activity that would "open" her mind. Living in a remote Garifuna village in Honduras, Juanita had dropped out of school after the sixth grade. In 1996, a new educational program, Sistema de Aprendizaje Tutorial (Tutorial Learning System or SAT), was started in her community. The program helped her see the world differently and open a small business. Empowering women through education has become a top priority of international development efforts. Erin MurphyGraham draws on more than a decade of qualitative research to examine the experiences of Juanita and eighteen other women who participated in the SAT program. Their narratives suggest the simple yet subtle ways education can spark the empowerment process, as well as the role of men and boys in promoting gender equality. Drawing on indepth interviews and classroom observation in Honduras and Uganda, MurphyGraham shows the potential of the SAT program to empower women through expanded access and improved quality of secondary education in Latin America and Africa. An appendix provides samples of the classroom lessons.

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... Overall, the review captures a range of voices (Adamu, 1999;Adiri et al., 2010;Afolayan, 2011Afolayan, , 2014Afolayan, , 2015Amadiume, 2015;Baily, 2011;Ben Chucks, 2004;Carmichael, 2011;Dutt, 2017;Eldred et al., 2014;Erulkar & Muthengi, 2009;Eweniyi & Usman, 2013;Falola & Abidogun, 2014;Fuhriman et al., 2006;Konate, 2011;Maddox, 2015;Odok, 2020;Pitikoe & Preece, 2016;Robson, 2006;Udo et al., 2020;Ukwuaba & Igbo, 2013), insights and understandings (Afolayan, 2016a(Afolayan, , 2016b(Afolayan, , 2017Akpama et al., 2011;Alhassan, 2010;Angko, 2013;Csapo, 1981;Fayokun, 2015;Frankema, 2012;Galvan, 2001;Kainuwa et al., 2013;Kaufmann et al., 2019;Kuran, 2018;Monkman, 2011;Murphy-Graham, 2012;Murphy-Graham & LIoyd, 2016;Ogunjuyigbe & Fadeyi, 2002;Parr, 2001;Stromquist, 1990Stromquist, , 1992Stromquist, , 1997Stromquist, , 2007Stromquist, , 2011Thurston, 2016;Tvdet, 2006;Uddin, 2017;Vega & Bajaj, 2016) to signify the extent to which current studies redefine existing knowledge purposefully on the subject matter (Afolayan, 2019;Bano, 2009Bano, , 2018Bano, , 2019Bano, , 2020Belete, 2011;Chilisa & Ntseane, 2010;Coombs & Ahmed, 1974;Dighe, 1985Dighe, , 1992Hoppers, 2006;Jackson, 1997;Jenkins & Idele, 2020;Kolawole, 2010;Mayombe, 2017;Mfum-Mensah, 2003;Mulenga et al., 2018;Nath, et al., 1999;Olateju, 2010;Ololube & Egbezor, 2012;Taylor et al., 2012;The Brookings Institution, 2018;UNESCO, 2015;Unterhalter et al., 2013;Usman, 2009Usman, , 2010Walker, 2012). The other parts in this chapter are organised in five parts. ...
... Whilst there are different interpretations and emphasises with respect to NFE, some common features have also been identified in the literature (Fordham, 1993;Mfum-Mensah, 2003;Murphy-Graham, 2012;Murphy-Graham & LIoyd, 2016). They are as follows: ...
... Empowerment framework is aptly relevant for this study as it is evidenced by its extensive contemporary use in the field of education to analyse how NFE programs have enhanced the capabilities of rural girls and women; in terms of financial autonomy, literacy skills and raising of consciousness about women's rights (Bandiera et al., 2012;Eldred, et al., 2014;Hashemi, et al., 1996;Moll et al., 2015;Murphy-Graham, 2012;Stromquist, 2015). These contemporary studies further lay credence on the appropriate choice of this framework for the study as it involves perspectives of different stakeholders that are relevant in the implementation of non-formal education program for girls and women in Islamic conservative communities. ...
Thesis
Non-formal education has been attributed with many benefits for rural women who are unable to participate in formal schooling. However, little is known about the perspectives of non-formal education programs (NFEPs) from the lived experiences of females—especially in Nigerian Islamic conservative communities. To address this gap, this thesis explored multiple perspectives of NFEP from the lived experiences of females in a region with high rates of child marriage. Using a qualitative case study design, the data were collected through focus group discussions and interviews in two rural communities in northern Nigeria. Participants comprised two leaders from each community; three NFEP personnel; 28 females who had participated in a NFEP, and 24 females who had not participated in a NFEP (n=59). The findings provide unique insight that can guide the phenomenon of NFEPs for rural females in religiously conservative communities. The participants reported a need for literacy skills and economic independence and were generally quite positive about NFEPs in their communities. Most participants in NFEPs reported having increased knowledge, positive attitude and behaviours, improved ability to express themselves, partake in decision-making in the family, and to organise themselves for collective action—all of which resulted to empowering experiences. Also, most male partners (spouses), parents of the participants and male participants (community leaders) were supportive of the NFEP, supportive of women working outside the home and women earning money. The program participants reported that NFEP has been a positive influence on their self-worth, role in the society, future aspirations and dreams for their daughters because of their relative economic independence and the status they seem to enjoy within their communities. Female program non-participants support NFEP but many of them could not participate because their spouses and parents did not allow them. Thus, while many males supported the participation of women and girls in NFEP, gendered barriers still existed. In conclusion, females can be empowered in these conservative communities if it is done in a way that respects socio-cultural traditions.
... The government approved the SAT curriculum and pays teacher salaries, but Bayán retains much autonomy to hire, train, supervise, and occasionally dismiss teachers. Prior qualitative research suggests that SAT improves students' sense of social responsibility (Honeyman, 2010) and the empowerment of female students (Murphy-Graham, 2012). ...
... In Honduras, the SAT model has already expanded to multiple departments within Honduras, and its effects are the subject of considerable interest in the Secretaría de Educación, international organizations, and other countries where SAT is already or might be implemented, including its Colombian birthplace (IDB, 2004;Murphy-Graham, 2012). Although a randomized experiment was not feasible in this instance, we suggest that a well-designed quasi-experiment, building in design elements such as strong falsification tests (Rubin, 2008), strikes a credible and policy-relevant balance between internal and external validity. ...
... The textbooks emphasize rural and agricultural topics, and require students to develop community projects (e.g., teaching literacy classes or planting crops). Students purchase each textbook for 60 Lempiras (about US$3), and use them as workbooks to complete assigned exercises (for examples of SAT lessons and detail on the curriculum, see Murphy-Graham, 2012). In the typical SAT classroom, students read aloud and discuss textbook lessons with the teacher and then work individually and in small groups to complete written exercises. ...
Article
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This article evaluates the impact and cost-effectiveness of offering an innovative middle school model—the Sistema de Aprendizaje Tutorial (SAT)—to Honduran villages instead of traditional middle schools. We identified a matched sample of villages with either type of school and collected baseline data among primary school graduates eligible to enroll in middle schools. After 2 years, the test scores of children residing in SAT villages were 0.2 standard deviations higher than children in other villages, though the per-student cost in SATs was at least 10% lower than traditional schools. The article is one of the few studies to rigorously evaluate a scaled-up instructional reform in a poor country, implemented with an alternative model of teacher recruitment and contracting.
... Previous studies worldwide evidence the link between education, empowerment and socio economic transformation (Bandiera 2012, King and Hill 2010, Kober 2016, Malik and Courtney 2010, Mc.Lean and Modi 2016, Murphy-Graham, E. 2012, Sperling, and Winthrop 2015, Swarna 2010. ...
... In the same line of reasoning, Murphy -Graham (2012) proposes that empowered individuals through good education understand, and are aware of their worth and the obligation and ability to contribute to individual and social wellbeing. Through her book, "Opening Minds, Improving Lives: Education and women empowerment in Honduras", Murphy-Graham contends that education empowers individuals to contribute to their personal and social transformation. ...
... The focus was on mature women students who combine studies and work occupations. The findings in the present study are in line with earlier research on the link between education of women in general and development (Kober 2016, Graham-Murphy 2012, 2008. In addition, the present study brought to light some empirical evidence that, if given opportunities, women in Rwanda and probably elsewhere stand to positively contribute towards societal advancement through higher education studies. ...
Article
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The Objective of the present study is to document the contribution of University studies towards empowering mature women students in Rwanda. Specifically, this study documents how University education has contributed to improve individual and social lives of women mature students in Rwanda. Interviews and questionnaires were used to collect data from one hundred and twenty mature women students located in six higher learning institutions in Rwanda. Thematic analysis was used to analyse data. Findings reveal that, at individual and community levels, participants in the present study maintain that university studies helped some to maintain their jobs, others to create their own jobs or take part in activities that aim to reduce poverty, develop and increase literacy as well as healthcare awareness in the community. They felt to be morally satisfied as role models to younger generations in general and their own children in particular by using their time for academically rewarding activities instead of spending time gossiping for no personal or community advancement. They advocate for continued support to the policy of open access to higher education with flexible programmes that accommodate both working and non-working women. Higher education studies increase women competitiveness and provide opportunities for better networking. Also, findings in the present study break the established stereotype that only males are destined for higher education and for specific academic domains. The study recommends the extension and sustainability of such flexible programmes to afford capacity development of mature students. Overall, the majority of respondents converge on the "better late than never" saying, and are grateful of the open access to university studies policy regardless of the students' age.
... In HEY!, we wanted to support critical thinking specifically with regards to gender inequality and child marriage. The lessons created followed a similar pedagogical approach to the SAT curriculum, often starting and ending with questions and activities that encouraged discussion (for a more detailed description of the SAT curriculum, see Murphy-Graham, 2012). In addition to questions and discussions aimed at hunting for and checking assumptions, the curriculum includes the introduction of new concepts and ideas to aid in the critical thinking process, including "multiplicity of perceptions" and exposing students to alternative ideas and ways of thinking (Brookfield, 1997, p.19). ...
... Mercedes was able to challenge her own hegemonic assumptions -of her inferiority because she was a girl, and she was naturally weaker than boys -and reimagine what she was capable of. Her response shows that Mercedes now has a framework to understand, explain, and reject gender inequality, and to recognize her inherent worth, a key component of empowerment (Murphy-Graham, 2012). Mercedes' account suggests that she experienced cognitive dissonance as a result of the lessons, and that she was exposed to a new set of beliefs that were different to those she held before participating in HEY!. ...
Chapter
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This chapter presents findings from a design-based research project between the University of California, Berkeley and a Honduran non-governmental organization, Bayan Association called Holistic Education for Youth (HEY!). We explain why critical thinking is a crucial life skill to prevent child marriage in rural areas of Honduras and illustrate how critical thinking (specifically around gender inequality and marriage) was incorporated into a secondary school curriculum. We describe the pedagogies used to develop this curriculum and offer insights about its implementation. Finally, using classrooms observation and interview data, we discuss how students developed critical thinking and decision-making skills related to the gender inequality in society that has perpetuated the practice of child marriage.
... Bu dönüşüm, kadınların insan olarak doğuştan sahip oldukları değer nedeniyle kendilerine borçlu olunan yaşamın yaratılması için verilen bir mücadele sürecidir. Bu süreçte kadınların yaşamlarını ve koşullarını eleştirel bir şekilde analiz etme kapasitelerine ve bireysel, sosyal ve toplumsal değişime katkıda bulunma yeteneklerine güvenilmesi gerekir (Murphy-Graham, 2012). Bu nedenle kadının güçlenmesi, tüm kadınların yaşamlarının pek çok farklı alanında kontrol sahibi özneler olarak yeniden varlık kazanma sürecidir. ...
... Eğitimin, kadının güçlenmesi açısından oldukça büyük bir öneme sahip olduğu ve eğitim düzeyinin, kadınların kapasitelerini ortaya çıkartmalarında, ekonomik, sosyal ve politik hayata katılımlarında önemli bir rol oynadığı muhakkaktır (Demirdi-rek & Şener, 2014). Zira kadınların eğitimi, yalnızca ekonomik veya sosyal yararları nedeniyle değil, daha ziyade, kadınların yaşamlarını anlamlı kılma fırsatlarını genişletmenin ve güçlenmelerinin bir yolu olması bakımından önemli görülmektedir (Murphy-Graham, 2012). Bununla birlikte güçlenme ve eğitim arasındaki ilişkin boyutlarına ilişkin tartışmalar da bulunmaktadır. ...
Article
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In this study, it was aimed to examine that perspectives of female university students on women’s empowerment and the problems of empowerment of women living in Turkey. In this context, quantitative research was conducted on a sample of 219 female students studying at different departments of Hacettepe University. First, via questionnaires were received the assessment of the students about the factors that played a role in the empowerment of women, the responsible actors and the importance of participation in the decisions for women’s empowerment, and the origins of the problem of women’s empowerment. Then, it was tried to understand, in the eyes of students, what are the limitations of movement freedom of women, and which factors diminish women’s power of the participation in decisions and their power to control their own lives. As a result of the research, the importance of the areas that can provide transformation at the social level as well as the empowerment of women at the individual level was presented. According to the research, it is essential for women to make choices that will make them strong, to participate in an empowering education, to take part in the field of politics, and to work paid improving the social and economic situation of women.
... In this report the term 'empowerment' is used to signal processes of social transformation, which include personal, social, political and economic changes in relation to access to resources, agency and outcomes that tend in the direction of substantive gender equality (DeJaeghere et al., 2013;Monkman, 2011;Murphy-Graham, 2012). It includes changes at the level of families, communities, institutions and social movements. ...
... A second node of the ToC postulates that an outcome of expanded and improved education for girls would be enhanced opportunities for women to participate in reshaping gender relations in economic, political, social, cultural and technological fields; this would feed back to changes in the law and the enabling environment. We use 'empowerment' as the term for this process, although we acknowledge that there is considerable controversy regarding its meaning (Eyben et al., 2008;Monkman, 2011;Murphy-Graham, 2012;Unterhalter et al., 2013). Duflo (2012) reviewed the literature on economic development and empowerment and found that education is a necessary but not sufficient condition for empowerment: continuous policy commitment to equality for its own sake may be needed to bring about equality between men and women. ...
... Feminist scholars also argue that the impact of education and labor market participation on gendered roles in the domestic sphere can be uneven as well as difficult to observe. As a result, the attention to study such changes, or lack of them, in the domestic sphere has not been as extensive as the focus on women's role in public spaces (Murphy-Graham, 2012;Sullivan, 2004). ...
... The lived experiences of the participants highlighted the uneven impact of education and labor market participation on the feminized domain of home (Hochschild, 1997;Murphy-Graham, 2012;Sullivan, 2004). The parhi likhi women experienced gender equality as they participated in male-dominated decisionmaking processes in their families. ...
Article
Grounded in a gender equity perspective, this ethnography of educated women professionals from rural and low-income communities of Pakistan examines the impact of women's education on gender relations in the domestic sphere. The analysis shows how education can produce contested practices of gender equality through providing educated women access to new roles in public spaces while further integrating them in the domestic sphere. It questions the current emphasis on gender parity among international educational policies and projects as the key to empowering women. Instead of approaching gender equality as the ability of educated women to participate in public institutions, this article emphasizes the need to examine how education can reproduce certain gender hierarchies while transforming others in the domestic sphere.
... By and large, in both empowerment and capabilities literature, edu- cation is seen as a way to expand women's opportunities; to empower women; to improve women's rights; and-most importantly-to achieve gender equality. Education, however, does not always result in women's empowerment, due to the socio-economic context in which women's lives are situated (Murphy-Graham 2012 ), or to processes and norms and learning practices dominated by power and gender relations, histori- cal contradictions (Walker and Unterhalter 2007 ) and the dominant state ideologies. These processes may not always necessarily enhance freedoms, but may rather cause capability deprivation (Unterhalter 2003a ). ...
... As argued before, education can both reproduce and interrupt inequali- ties. The lives of the women in this book uphold the link between educa- tion and women's empowerment and agency (Alkire 2002 ;DeJaeghere and Lee 2011 ;Kabeer 1999 ;Murphy-Graham 2012 ) and show how edu- cation played a critical role in expanding the capabilities and opportunities of women to live meaningful lives, providing an avenue for the cultiva- tion of mind and processes of recognition, capacity building and action (Nussbaum 2003a ). Through education, they developed the capacity to make strategic life choices, enjoyed the agency to be in charge of their lives, had self-determination and confi dence and accessed employment opportunities. ...
Chapter
This chapter will take a closer look at Turkey’s past in terms of political, feminist and education history, to offer insight so that readers can better understand the emerging injustices and social conversion factors in different eras in women’s lives as well as in the history of Turkey. The chapter does not aspire to offer a detailed historical account, but rather to briefly present a historical context of the interviewees’ lives. The first part of the chapter presents the key historical events which help us to contextualise women’s lives within the three eras (The Republic period, 1923–1950; the multi-party democracy era, 1950–1980; contemporary times, from 1980 to present) examined in this book. The second part puts the lives of women into historical context and presents the ongoing and recent discussions on gender issues and equality in Turkey. It starts with the modernisation process, when feminism was under the control of the state, and then moves to the post-1980 feminist awakening in Turkey during which women broke the glass ceiling and started to voice their demands. Finally, it draws attention to the recent neo-liberal and neo-conservative policies which have reduced women’s status in society and increased their vulnerability. The third part offers and defines the key and problematic aspects of education—such as gender insensitive education or discriminatory aspects of education which enhance prejudices against some social groups and minorities (such as non-Muslims, Kurds, Greeks and Armenians).
... Therefore, the limiting factor of education and the wider structural coercion against the empowerment of girls raise an issue regarding the quality and the content of education. Researchers Aikman and Unterhalter 2013 ;Goetz 2007 ;Monkman 2011 ;Murphy-Graham 2012 ;Robeyns 2010a ;Unterhalter 2007a , b ) emphasise that a quality education requires gender equality and equity in guiding women to challenge traditional gender roles, norms and stereotypes. Assessing the quality of education should involve addressing questions of how schooling articulates labour market opportunities, how the media depicts gender, how women's exclusion inside and outside the school is addressed, and how the social, cultural, political and economic processes that cause gender discrimination in the public sphere and in labour markets are challenged (Aikman and Unterhalter 2013 ). ...
... What is needed even more than the equalisation of rights or the transformation of institutions is the capability improvement on the basis of human diversity, and a reciprocal relationship between social policy formulations, capabilities and agency (Sen 1999 As argued before, education can both reproduce and interrupt inequalities. The lives of the women in this book uphold the link between education and women's empowerment and agency (Alkire 2002 ;DeJaeghere and Lee 2011 ;Kabeer 1999 ;Murphy-Graham 2012 ) and show how education played a critical role in expanding the capabilities and opportunities of women to live meaningful lives, providing an avenue for the cultivation of mind and processes of recognition, capacity building and action (Nussbaum 2003a ). Through education, they developed the capacity to make strategic life choices, enjoyed the agency to be in charge of their lives, had self-determination and confi dence and accessed employment opportunities. ...
Chapter
This chapter aims to pull together the key findings from the women’s experiences and insights concerning factors that supported them to become who they are or do what they value. Drawing on their experiences, I reflect on possible interventions that schools and policy-makers should consider to regulate gender-sensitive social policies and to create a more women-friendly society and school environment, and to establish gender justice both as an outcome and process. The chapter argues for the value of the capabilities framework and list to form road maps and solutions for gender justice and provide a new language for thinking about gender justice and education in Turkey while arguing for the universality of experiences described in this book. The chapter concludes by discussing limited understandings of freedom and development in Turkey based on legislation, and proposes a number of social, welfare and education policies for the development of women from a capabilities perspective.
... Therefore, the limiting factor of education and the wider structural coercion against the empowerment of girls raise an issue regarding the quality and the content of education. Researchers Aikman and Unterhalter 2013 ;Goetz 2007 ;Monkman 2011 ;Murphy-Graham 2012 ;Robeyns 2010a ;Unterhalter 2007a , b ) emphasise that a quality education requires gender equality and equity in guiding women to challenge traditional gender roles, norms and stereotypes. Assessing the quality of education should involve addressing questions of how schooling articulates labour market opportunities, how the media depicts gender, how women's exclusion inside and outside the school is addressed, and how the social, cultural, political and economic processes that cause gender discrimination in the public sphere and in labour markets are challenged (Aikman and Unterhalter 2013 ). ...
... What is needed even more than the equalisation of rights or the transformation of institutions is the capability improvement on the basis of human diversity, and a reciprocal relationship between social policy formulations, capabilities and agency (Sen 1999 As argued before, education can both reproduce and interrupt inequalities. The lives of the women in this book uphold the link between education and women's empowerment and agency (Alkire 2002 ;DeJaeghere and Lee 2011 ;Kabeer 1999 ;Murphy-Graham 2012 ) and show how education played a critical role in expanding the capabilities and opportunities of women to live meaningful lives, providing an avenue for the cultivation of mind and processes of recognition, capacity building and action (Nussbaum 2003a ). Through education, they developed the capacity to make strategic life choices, enjoyed the agency to be in charge of their lives, had self-determination and confi dence and accessed employment opportunities. ...
Chapter
This chapter conceptualises gender justice, drawing on the different perspectives of selected feminist political philosophers, who illuminate different approaches and conceptualisations to thinking about gender justice globally. The chapter leads into a discussion of gender equality in relation to education and then critically reviews the frameworks which offer a different understanding of gender equality in education. Lastly, I connect these discussions with the human development and capabilities perspective of Martha Nussbaum and Amartya Sen and use the capabilities approach as an ‘umbrella’ gender justice approach to offer a normative and global framework. The chapter ends with a formulation of a capabilities list taking into account the socio-cultural/political context of Turkey and drawing from the empirical literature and research in a Turkish context.
... Only few of them use it for business capital [13,15,16]. For that reason, a movement is required to change their habit jointly [17][18][19]. ...
... There is no different relationship between female and male members of organization; there is equality in accessing information and capital. Former migrant women participate maximally in organizational activity, have equal right to the men, and no compulsion from any party in running entrepreneurship activity [13,18,27]. In establishing group business, they also have equal right in implementing joint activity without discrimination, thereby having an opportunity of implementing development in order to be independent and powerful and abandoning their adverse behavior [28]. ...
... A second strand emerging from the literature on education and empowerment (e.g. Monkman, 2011;Murphy-Graham, 2012;Loots and Walker, 2015) tries to highlight the potential of the capability approach for this work, but does not fully engage with the debate about capabilities and empowerment. In this section I first discuss these two complementary literatures and then turn to my own reading of some of the work on empowerment and capabilities drawing out the potential this suggest to me for thinking about education, gender and participation. ...
... The nature of structures, and how they shape agency becomes particularly salient. Whether approaches stress the nuanced and contextualized notion of agency, she associates with work on the capability approach, or whether it is associated with more schematic mappings of relationship between individuals, groups and organisational forms, she highlights a complex relationship between education and empowerment now documented in a number of empirical studies (Unterhalter, Heslop and Mamedu, 2013;Murphy-Graham, 2012), Monkman (2011) points out that all this work shows that this relationship is neither linear nor direct. Indeed the relational dimensions, for example with differently situated men, with historically constituted and changing groups, with institutions understood both as organizations and sets of rules or norms, and with different meanings of power, are a key component of the kinds of social change which may or may not transpire. ...
Chapter
In this chapter, Elaine Unterhalter considers four brief moments in the history of the concept of ‘empowerment’ and links these with the capability approach. To ‘empower’ in a pessimistic sense dates to the English civil war and was initially used to describe the illicit exercise of authority on behalf of powerful actors. In the twentieth century, ‘empowerment’ came to be reframed optimistically to describe Black Power and liberation theology, and later a kind of solidarity and activism associated with the women’s movement. Since then the term has been increasingly criticised by feminists and social activists due to its co-optation by the status quo, which typically involves suppressing its transformative potential. Unterhalter draws on Gramsci’s notion of hegemony to help explain this process. But her main contribution is to show how three conceptual links with the capability approach (along with reflexive comparative education) can bolster the notion of empowerment by helping to ensure that it continues to engage with equality and social justice. The three conceptual connections in question involve emphasising the importance of context and human diversity for articulating capabilities, stressing the role of human agency in promoting fairness and solidarity, and embracing deliberative democracy and participation for evaluative purposes.
... Women's status is a multidimensional construct representing women's level of power, access, and resources within the contexts of relationships, families, communities, and societies (Tlapek 2014). It comprises how women are perceived and valued by themselves and others within these contexts which determines their capacity and state of self-governing and exerting power in their lives (Kishor and Subaiya 2008;Murphy-Graham 2012). Women's social and physical environments, as well as their intrapersonal characteristics, are strongly associated with women's status. ...
... Descriptive characteristics of 12-16-year-olds, Honduras, 2011-2012 ...
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Maternal decision-making autonomy has been linked to positive outcomes for children’s health and well-being early in life in low- and middle-income countries throughout the world. However, there is a dearth of research examining if and how maternal autonomy continues to influence children’s outcomes into adolescence and whether it impacts other domains of children’s lives beyond health, such as their education. The goal of this study was to determine whether high maternal decision-making was associated with school enrollment for secondary school-aged youth in Honduras. Further, we aimed to assess whether the relationships between maternal autonomy and school enrollment varied by adolescents’ environmental contexts and individual characteristics such as gender. Our analytical sample included 6579 adolescents ages 12–16 living with their mothers from the Honduran Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) 2011–2012. We used stepwise logistic regression models to investigate the association between maternal household decision-making autonomy and adolescents’ school enrollment. Our findings suggest that adolescents, especially girls, benefit from their mothers’ high decision-making autonomy. Findings suggest that maternal decision-making autonomy promotes adolescents’ school enrollment above and beyond other maternal, household, and regional influences.
... Thus the actions of educated girls always need to be understood in terms of gendered norms that constrain the possibilities for change ( National Research Council, 2005;Mascarenhas, 2007;Maslak, 2008;Ross et al., 2011). Some authors, in bringing together elements of GAD and capabilities analysis highlight how a simple stress on distribution and education provision fails to take account of what is learned and how this learning can be used ( Stromquist, 2002;Unterhalter, 2003;Monkman, 2011;Murphy-Graham, 2012). A notable critique is that in monitoring school systems and the provision of opportunities to learn primarily in units of resource, that is how many years of enrolment or what level of attainment, analysts miss aspects of situatedness, collectivity, emotion, and the sense of vulnerability which has been a key component of postcolonial feminist assessments of inequality and experience of education whether or not there have been achievements. ...
Article
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The article considers the analytical connection between two approaches to discussing girls’ schooling and gender justice. One trend considers injustice primarily as a question of inequalities in distribution and raises few questions about the nature of the gender norms associated with inequitable distribution. A second approach looks at issues of empowerment, the ways in which structural gendered inequalities in the political economy and socio-cultural formations constrain the capacity of girls inside and outside school to claim the rights promised by education, but tends to underplay issues of distribution. The article considers what the relationship between these two approaches to gender justice might be though a detailed discussion of baseline data collected in 2008 for the NGO led TEGINT (Transforming education for girls in Nigeria and Tanzania) project. Girls’ identification of the obstacles to claiming education rights and possible solutions are used as proxies for empowerment, while different features of distribution are examined with regard to gender parity in access and progression, governance and management, and teacher qualifications. Quantitative data based on responses to a survey allows for correlation between aspects of distribution and empowerment to be considered across different contexts. The strongest association between empowerment and distribution is found with regard to the levels of teachers’ qualifications, although there is not sufficient data to explain the reasons for this. The conclusion highlights the importance of contextual factors in understanding the relationships between distribution and empowerment evident from the data and the importance of designing future studies to look more closely at the dynamic two way relationship of distributional and empowerment aspects of gender justice in education.
... Education has been found to be a crucial intervention in challenging the reproduction of socially determined gender roles (e.g. Munoz Boudet et al. 2013;Murphy-Graham 2012). However, the experiences of the participants in this study are ambiguous, both showing the expansion of opportunities afforded by higher education, but also its limits in addressing (or understanding) socially embedded gender norms and resulting discriminatory behaviours. ...
... Field research (e.g. ethnographic studies and localized projects), on the other hand, points to a much more complicated set of concerns (DeJaeghere and Lee, 2011;Holmarsdottir et al., 2011;Molyneaux, 2011;Murphy-Graham, 2012;Shah, 2011). Reasons why girls are (or are not) in school are complex, and the integral relationship of education to social context (including structural inequities, discrimination, patriarchy, etc.) are not fully addressed in policy discourse (UNICEF/Miske Witt and Associates, 2007;Herz and Sperling, 2006). ...
Article
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Girls’ education has been a focus of international development policy for several decades. The discursive framing of international organizations’ policy initiatives relating to girls’ education, however, limits the potential for discussing complex gender issues that affect the possibilities for gender equity. Because discourse shapes our understanding of reality, the emphases and omissions of policy language can affect our understanding of complex issues such as the challenges of girls’ education in international development. Using feminist critical policy discourse analysis, this study analyzes 300 policy documents, published between 1995 and 2008, that represent the ‘public face’ of 14 organizations active in the field of international development education. We examine three types of discursive arguments given in the documents for educating girls: justice arguments, utility arguments, and empowerment arguments. We show that the robustness of ‘gender’, and related concepts such as equity and equality as theoretical constructs, are limited, which is a factor constraining what can be understood as important in gender equity in education. Policy remains focused on girls and not gender (or boys), and on easily measurable indicators (counting boys and girls in school). This policy discourse does little to recognize that gender as a social process reproduces – or has the potential to challenge – social inequities.
... Furthermore, it recognizes that education can either work to reproduce or change social structures and norms that create inequalities. The transformative component of social learning is oriented toward creating equitable and just ways for all to live a good life (e.g., Murphy-Graham, 2012). This use of transformative social learning calls attention to how we think about and teach life skills relationally as well as the outcomes desired from learning them. ...
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This chapter examines how life skills education draws on a dominant individualistic behavioral approach that aims to teach skills to young people so they can overcome various social and economic problems. Life skills are taught to girls so that they can be empowered to overcome health issues, such as HIV/AIDs or early pregnancy. They are also targeted at boys who are deemed ‘at risk’ of engaging in asocial behaviors in efforts to reduce violence and to contribute to the economy. Yet many of these societal problems are linked to changing social, economic and environmental relations. To think differently about how to use life skills to foster a good life that is just, equitable, and sustainable, the chapter offers a transformative framing based in a critical and relational approach. Such an approach requires a reframing of skills to consider the values and perspectives that are often implicitly taught, such as individual responsibility and self-promotion, and to reorient these skills around values that youth desire and need within their challenging contexts. It concludes with a discussion of some common life skills and how they can be reframed to achieve transformation in society so youth can live life well – oriented toward greater justice, equality and peace.
... Interventions that seek to enhance the capacity of poor or marginalized women and girls to participate in discussing school practices and reflecting on their experiences are not well documented, but the few studies there are indicate the potential for work in this area 50,51,58 . ...
Technical Report
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1 Girls' education and gender equality Issue Date EVIDENCE BRIEF A mix of interventions to provide resources, change institutions or shift norms, works more effectively than trying to isolate a "silver bullet". About this Brief This brief summarises evidence from Interventions to enhance girls' education and gender equality: A rigorous review of literature 1 by Unterhalter, E et al (2014). The evidence reviewed indicates the importance of a mix of combined interventions which work to change institutions. Evidence suggests the following interventions:  resource interventions to support girls' education (eg. conditional cash transfers or in-kind support) depend on careful targeting of students most unlikely to attend school. Complementary in-kind health interventions can enhance enrolment and may result in learning gains for girls and boys.  infra-structural interventions (eg.sanitation, school building) improve enrolment and potentially learning but more research is needed to show how.  interventions for institutional change require well trained teachers, gender equitable schools and administrators.  interventions to shift gender norms are under-researched. Girls' clubs, engaging faith communities, working with boys, and strategies to include marginalised women in decision-making appear promising. The relationship between the expansion of girls' education, social change and empowerment is under-researched. A key finding concerns the importance of understanding contexts at local, national and global levels including the climate of support for girls' schooling, complementary legal, regulatory and security frameworks, state capacity to implement policy and engage in inclusive dialogue.
... In addition, as has been discussed, the rates of sexual violence I have found suggest that young women's ability to refuse is highly constrained and, too often, ignored. What complicates the situation further is that refusal of sex on the part of the girl/woman is expected of feminine sexuality even when she feels desire (and perhaps indicated agreement indirectly), and therefore may not necessarily indicate a lack of consent (p'Bitek, 1964;Porter, 2013, pp. 166-201). ...
Article
This article explores the role of schools in the formation of sexual identities and incidence of sexual violence in the Acholi sub-region of northern Uganda, a conflict and post-conflict setting. It reflects three years of participant observation and in-depth interviews with 187 women, and primarily draws on interviews with 17 teachers in five primary schools. The evidence shows how the experience girls have in school builds a paradoxical paradigm with irreconcilable dimensions. Girls are charged to take control of their bodies and sexuality. Simultaneously, they are scripted into feminine sexual identities that reinforce subordinate gender roles where violence is an ever-present possibility. Boys learn masculine notions of sexuality that emphasize paternity and customary exchanges while consent is downplayed.
... Education has been found to be a crucial intervention in challenging the reproduction of socially determined gender roles (e.g. Munoz Boudet et al. 2013;Murphy-Graham 2012). However, the experiences of the participants in this study are ambiguous, showing both the expansion of opportunities afforded by higher education and also its failure in addressing gendered norms and the resulting discriminatory behaviours, such as sexual harassment. ...
Article
South African institutions still confront gendered inequalities, irrespective of transformative national policies, compounded by the absence of a national gender equality policy for higher education. We therefore explore the potential of the capabilities approach (CA) to inform policy formation and argue for the development of a policy for higher education institutions based on opportunities for valuable functionings as the informational basis for gender equality. Using one university as our case study, data from 38 interviews with female and male students were analysed as part of a longitudinal study on Gender, Empowerment, Agency and Higher Education. The data reveal which opportunities these women and men find important for their personal development and directly and indirectly for gender equality. We conclude by discussing the implications of the data for stimulating public dialogues towards formulating a capabilities-based gender equality policy, as well as reflecting on the broader contributions the CA brings to policy development.
... They develop the capacity to critically examine their lives and broader society and take action toward personal and social transformation" (Murphy- Graham, 2012) As life skills in adolescent girls are likely to evolve out of constructive processing of information, encounters and experiences, enhancing social, emotional, ethical and independent living skills should be predominantly emphasized during their empowerment (Dowd, 2005).The transitional period of adolescent development is characterized by psychological turmoil; a period of 'storm and stress' (Hall, 1925), a period of lower self-control and higher sensitivity. Providing a supportive environment by imparting skills education to adolescents in this phase of life can usher an innovative conceptual shift in the thinking that women problems are the hurdles to women empowerment into women empowerment is the most efficient strategy to solve their problems (Pittman and Fleming, 1991). ...
... Empowerment has been described as a concept of acknowledging who is capable of taking a decision (Naz, 2006), being able to manage their own lives with their own strategies (Young, 1993), with freedom to take their own decisions and acquire the ability to handle different life problems (Rowland, 1997). Murphy (2008) identifies three components of women's empowerment: self-awareness, understanding, and recognition. These components are the results of educational processes that make women more self-confident, self-possessed, and decisive (Maslak & Singhal, 2008). ...
Article
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The empowerment of women is an essential objective to fully engage them in economic life and achieve sustainable growth throughout the world. Providing basic facilities to women is one form of empow-erment. This paper examines the extent of women's empowerment in Punjab, Pakistan and its divisions, along with rural and urban regions. In addition, we check the effect of the gender wage differential on the current dilemma by implementing Alkire et al.'s [2013.The women's empowerment in agriculture index (Working Paper No. 58). Oxford, UK: Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative. Retrieved from https://www.ophi.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/ophi-wp-58.pdf.] indexing on HIES 2013-14 datasets. Our results show that 34.91% of women are empowered in Punjab overall, with independence being the highest dimensional contributor, and ownership of assets being the least. Women are 31.43% more empowered in urban regions. The results indicate that Islamabad has significantly more women's empowerment, while Dera Ghazi Khan has the lowest percentage of empowered women. To assess particular impacts of different socioeconomic and demographic variables on women's empowerment, logistic regression model is applied, revealing that most socioeconomic and demographic variables have significant impacts on the current scenario, and variation in any variable causes significant variations in the status of women's empowerment, with increased wage differential in particular, decreasing the probability of women being empowered. ARTICLE HISTORY
... What is needed even more than the equalisation of rights or the transformation of institutions is the capability improvement on the basis of human diversity, and a reciprocal relationship between social policy formulations, capabilities and agency (Sen 1999 As argued before, education can both reproduce and interrupt inequalities. The lives of the women in this book uphold the link between education and women's empowerment and agency (Alkire 2002 ;DeJaeghere and Lee 2011 ;Kabeer 1999 ;Murphy-Graham 2012 ) and show how education played a critical role in expanding the capabilities and opportunities of women to live meaningful lives, providing an avenue for the cultivation of mind and processes of recognition, capacity building and action (Nussbaum 2003a ). Through education, they developed the capacity to make strategic life choices, enjoyed the agency to be in charge of their lives, had self-determination and confi dence and accessed employment opportunities. ...
Chapter
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The introduction sets the scene for the study and briefly presents the rationale and aims of the book. It focuses on current debates on gender, education and development, and problematises the contested definitions of gender justice, drawing on the work of Naila Kabeer, Nelly Stromquist and Ramya Subrahmanian to develop a conception of empowerment in relation to gender and social justice literature, and presents an overview of the capabilities approach. Then, it introduces the Turkish context in relation to issues of gender and education and teases out how the capabilities approach coupled with feminist theories can offer a better understanding of gender and education in Turkey and be used to make recommendations to policy-makers in order to improve social and educational policies. Lastly, a short overview of feminist methodology on ways to reach women’s voices is presented and the key arguments that unfold in the book are stated and explained.
... I suggest that teacher training programmes offer a more global perspective to highlight successful initiatives around the world to inspire critical reflection and action. Practices and initiatives from resource-poor and post-conflict societies (Apple 2010;Lazar 2010;Murphy-Graham 2012) could inspire teachers to recognise their potential roles as educators to foster social change. By learning from cross-cultural studies, teachers may identify the ways in which they can motivate the next generation of citizens to demand and create a better world. ...
Article
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South Africa has risen to the forefront of educational debates that claim schooling can promote social justice and social cohesion. By drawing on Freire’s (1970) theory of critical pedagogy, this paper examines how South African teachers in rural and township schools encourage students to reflect critically upon their own lives and take action to improve issues of inequality, violence, and insecurity. It argues that teachers understand their roles as agents of social change primarily as encouraging respect, morality, and racial reconciliation among learners. The ways in which the youth take up the teachers’ efforts to promote change depends upon how the teachers’ practices speak to the students’ own life circumstances. When the youth relate to the teachers’ life stories and course material, they engage in the process of moral translation. In other words, the youth rework their lessons into ideas of how they should behave as moral human beings. Yet, frequently young South Africans do not learn a morality based on a Freirean notion of social justice – a seemingly central component to the national curriculum – but instead a morality based on individualised notions of personal responsibility and hope for a better future. The paper concludes with several suggestions to improve educational practices for social justice.
... Furthermore, women are agents of reproduction and procreation, this places them at a position of life blood of the entire humanity [1]. According to the International Centre for Research on Women (ICRW) 2005, Education strengthens the wellbeing of women and creates an opportunity for them to air their voices in household decisions and have better opportunities to participate in the labour market and community as a whole [2]. Sufficient evidences from the 21 st century have proven that women have the capacity of holding and managing key leadership positions in the economy for sustainable development [3]. ...
Article
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This study examines the role of Education in women empowerment for effective participation in National Development. Education is a very important tool in improving the status of women in any society. It is indispensable as it enables women to gain Knowledge about the world which helps women upgrade their status, gain positive self-esteem, self-confidence, and necessary strength needed to face challenges in life. Therefore, educated women have a vital role to play in governance, agricultural sector, industrial sector, and the commerce sector for the nations building. Although Nigeria women are faced daily with some grassroots challenges that have hindered their participation in the nations building. The challenges faced by women daily which have limited their contributions to the development of Nigerian economy includes; cultural and traditional belief system, religion, illiteracy and low standard of living. The study concluded that, across the country women access to education is still low as the gender disparity in the enrolment of women into all level of educational institutions has widened over the years. To bridge this gap, the government should as a matter of urgency create and implement policies capable of promoting gender balance in access to education across the country, by insisting on the enrolment of a higher percentage of girl child in schools from primary schools. The government should also create policies that can remove institutional and artificial barriers based on culture, religion and traditional considerations impeding women from contributing to economic development.
... This feature -linking life skills competencies to social change -is not commonly present in most work on life skills, particularly from the other two discourse communities. An explicit focus on social change -and the life skills needed to foster change processes -is a more recent feature of scholarship that is consistent with earlier work on education for youth empowerment (see DeJaeghere et al., 2016;Murphy-Graham, 2012). ...
Chapter
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Drawing from a review of theoretical, methodological, and empirical literature on life skills from the fields of education, public health, psychology, economics, and international development, this paper attempts to clarify basic definitional and conceptual issues that relate to life skills education. It addresses the questions: (1) What are life skills, and how has the term emerged in academic and donor agency literature? And (2) What bodies of practice and research evidence converge in the rise of ‘life skills’ programming and increased interest in ‘life skills’ among thought leaders and donors in the field of international education? The paper identifies implications from this analysis to be considered in research and interventions that focus on life skills for adolescents, particularly in light of global efforts to improve the quality of education.
... Notable exceptions, which will be discussed in Chapter Two, include Vavrus (2003), Bajaj (2005), Bajaj and Pathmarajah, (2011), Murphy-Graham (2008; and Shah (2011). Still fewer studies have explored this process longitudinally by following the same young women over time as Seeberg (2011), Murphy-Graham (2012) and Shifting attention from female empowerment toward schooling itself, the push to ensure girls have access to schooling has, as of late, given way to a focus on gender equity and increasing educational quality within and through schooling. This shift has been in response to a combination of increased access to school for girls worldwide and the growing focus on girls' and women's empowerment alongside evidence of persistent gendered inequalities as measured by a variety of global indicators. ...
Thesis
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In this dissertation, I explore the interplay of education and empowerment as it is lived by seven young Tanzanian women and developed at a unique all-girls’ secondary school in Tanzania. Drawing on interviews and participant observation from eight trips over four years, this study offers a longitudinal, ethnographic exploration of the school, Sasema Secondary School for Girls, to explore the rationale and production of curricula, pedagogies and practices that draw on global, national and local notions of empowerment and education. This study illuminates the tensions, vulnerabilities, feats and aspirations in young women’s lives through employing a life history approach focusing on three young women’s complete life histories. It examines the role that schooling has played, and has not played, in what these women describe as a contingent movement from vulnerability toward increasing security and well-being. This dissertation advances two main arguments: First, by exploring the practices and pedagogies at Sasema that young women have found to be valuable in their lives both at and beyond school, it demonstrates the significance of, and possibilities for, emotional and social learning through schooling while underscoring the importance of care in schools. As such, this research reinforces calls to conceptualize educational quality beyond the metrics of academic knowledge or vocational skills, traditionally thought of as schooling’s raison d’être, toward more holistic notions of education for the whole person. Second, this study complicates and adds nuance to accepted notions of empowerment through education by offering deeply contextualized portraits of young women’s lives as they understand them to be unfolding. Although empowerment is frequently analyzed in economic or political terms, this work reveals that, for these young women, empowerment is also profoundly psychosocial and even corporeal. Furthermore, additional forces, such as family, religion and community, are at play in their notions of processes that advance their well-being and the well-being of others. As such, this study reveals disjunctures between empowerment through education as it lived by young women in Tanzania and as discussed by scholars of international development, education and gender.
... The unemployment rate in Indonesia is high due to a limited job opportunity, but the number of productive age populations increases, so that the poverty rate increases as well. The gap insocial life can be dealt with community empowerment [1]- [3]. Every member of society contributes to improving economic and wellbeing levels, thereby competitive in getting a job. ...
... In the summer of 2015, Claudia was invited to Cornell University to speak about CCFC's environmental education program at the Lab of Ornithology BirdSleuth Educators conference. Her development provides compelling evidence of the recognition and action components of empowerment advocated by Murphy-Graham (2012). The young women who participate in WALC clearly appreciate the process of learning through the program and its tangible benefits in their lives. ...
Article
Programs to keep young women in school across the developing world have become widespread. Education is key to improving their quality of life, but keeping them in school is a significant challenge. This article examines a scholarship program that provides 25 days of intensive leadership training for young indigenous women using a peer tutorial system. The program offers a unique experience, a variety of practical training, opportunities for personal growth, and evidence of empowerment. This study demonstrates that social change is occurring and that young women are promoting change in their own lives, as well as those of their families and communities.
Article
Trust in others is a foundational feature of a prosperous and flourishing society and serves as the basis for collective action and cooperation. In this paper, we emphasize that trust is a learned capacity, one that educational efforts should attempt to cultivate among students. We provide an in-depth discussion of how trust is conceptualized, as well as how it relates to the capabilities approach in education. Drawing from qualitative data collected in Honduras and Uganda, we identify four potential ways that education can build trust: (1) teacher/student relations that emphasize shared learning; (2) peer relations that emphasize collaboration rather than competition; (3) direct engagement with the community through service projects; and (4) the incorporation of lessons about trust and community in the curriculum.
Chapter
TThis chapter introduces several influential perspectives on gender within the field of Comparative and International Education from the last fifty years. We draw on Unterhalter’s (2007) observation that the term ‘gender’ has been variously used as a noun, adjective, and verb in the field of CIE and the closely related field of international development. Even as gender continues to be used all three ways, each usage – each part of speech – can be seen as corresponding to the development of different theoretical paradigms at the nexus of gender, education, and development, whereby WID and WAD scholars treat gender as a noun, GAD scholars view it as an adjective, and various post-scholars conceptualize it as a verb. We employ this grammatical framework to examine these approaches to gender in the hopes of historicizing and enlivening their contributions within the field of CIE.
Article
The issue of education for Muslim women has become central to many global discourses and policies focusing on Muslim countries. These paradigms present education for Muslim women as the solution to issues ranging from poverty to religious extremism. Embedded in these narratives is not only the image of Muslim women as oppressed victims of their culture, but also the image of Islam as a patriarchal religion. Education becomes an instrument to empower these women through enabling them to challenge their “oppressive” cultural and Islamic traditions. In other words, education becomes a site, tool, and institution to arrange the empowerment of Muslim women against their families, communities, and Islam.
Chapter
This chapter explores the development of youth agency and its relationship to community transformation by focusing on the Preparation for Social Action (PSA) program, an educational program developed by a Colombian NGO, FUNDAEC. Correa and Murphy-Graham draw on qualitative data from a study conducted in 2014 to describe how students develop a sense of agency and how this becomes a catalyst for individual and community change. The authors focus their findings around two elements of the program: How students begin taking action in small and concrete steps through community service and the use of individual and collective reflection exercises that allow for greater self-awareness.
Article
Is empowering peace education primarily about providing individuals with skills to respond to violence they experience and capabilities to enhance their own lives? Or is inspiring social transformation to alter forms of injustice that contribute to violence an equally valid and important dimension of an empowering peace education program? This article draws upon the authors’ experiences researching peace education programs implemented by local nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in two different contexts: Jamaica and Peru. The basis for comparison is grounded in the discourse key actors in these NGOs utilized in reference to their respective educational initiatives, explicitly emphasizing empowerment for marginalized groups. Using critical qualitative techniques and troubling the idea of ‘empowerment,’ the authors analyze the discourse of empowerment to look beyond explicit truth claims and unveil tacit assumptions regarding the purpose and desired outcomes for the beneficiaries of their respective programs. The authors interrogate what definitions of empowerment – social and/or individual – the program stakeholders envision as well as how they believe such empowerment comes about. The study’s findings contribute to the need to critically unpack the commonly uncritical use of the term ‘empowerment’ as necessarily directed toward addressing social inequalities and altering unjust power relations.
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O presente artigo analisa o processo pedagógico da luta de gênero que ocorre dentro da luta pela terra a partir do protagonismo das mulheres trabalhadoras do campo. Com base na literatura da temática da educação, gênero e movimentos sociais e, a partir de extensa pesquisa de campo desenvolvida no Sul do Brasil com mulheres e homens do Movimento dos Trabalhadores Rurais Sem Terra (MST) e com o Movimento de Mulheres Camponesas (MMC), este estudo evidencia os principais elementos que contribuíram para o empoderamento das mulheres camponesas e a mutação das relações de gênero na luta pela terra. Ao examinar o impacto da intencionalidade socioeducativa na transformação das relações de gênero, argumenta-se que o saber social produzido na luta político-organizativa, a partir de uma leitura de classe e da influência da teoria feminista, promove a organização das mulheres camponesas em torno das demandas estratégicas de gênero com vistas ao enfrentamento das desigualdades e da subalternização da mulher. Evidencia-se, no entanto, que apesar de sua importância, este processo pedagógico que emerge na dinâmica da luta social não é o suficiente para a transformação das relações de gênero. Há a necessidade de leis e políticas afirmativas que garantam à mulher condições efetivas de participação política, econômica e social.
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Women's empowerment is a concept that has acquired substantial recognition in the past decade. However, it is better known among international development organisations, NGOs, and grassroots groups than in academic circles. This article examines the concept of women's empowerment as a foundational element in a theory of social change in which the oppressed must be key actors in the change process. On the basis of empirical evidence, it highlights four dimensions of empowerment: economic, political, knowledge, and psychological. The knowledge dimension is fostered by one of the most respected and universal of institutions: formal education. Yet schools do not always provide friendly or even safe spaces for girls; moreover, the school curriculum emphasises academic subjects and avoids ‘life skills’ discussions. Most successful cases of empowerment through education have occurred in non-formal education programmes that specifically promote critical reflection on gendered social norms and encourage corrective responses. The article argues that the empowerment process must consider the close connection between the private and the public arenas, as the private space seriously constrains women's availability and possibilities for transformative action; therefore, both macro- and micro-level interventions are needed to create a modified gender division of labour. The promotion of agency — at both the individual and collective levels — plays a major role in the development of women's empowerment. Such a process requires the engagement of non-state actors, particularly women-led NGOs. The article ends with challenges for policy.
This article proposes a conceptual framework for how education can promote adolescent girls’ empowerment and, by mapping the field, highlights promising examples of empowering education programs. We conclude by identifying both research and programmatic opportunities for the future that will harness the expertise of a range of specialists from the interdisciplinary fields of gender studies and adolescent development in collaboration with experts from the fields of education, health, and labor.
Book
Governments in sub-Saharan Africa face increasing pressure to educate young people through secondary school, supposedly equipping them with knowledge and skills for employment and their future. At the same time, many youths do not complete their education and there are insufficient jobs to employ graduates. The development community sees entrepreneurship education as one viable solution to the double edged problem of inadequate education and few jobs. But while entrepreneurship education is aligned with a governing rationality of neoliberalism that requires individuals to create their own livelihoods without government social supports, the two NGO programs discussed in this book draw on a rights-based discourse that seeks to educate those not served by government schools, providing them with educational and social supports to be included in society. The chapters explore the tensions that occur when international organizations and NGOs draw on both neoliberal and liberal human rights discourses to address the problems of poverty, unemployment and poor quality education. Furthermore, when these neo/liberal perspectives meet local ideas of reciprocity and solidarity, they create friction and alter the programs and effects they have on youth. The book introduces the concept of entrepreneurial citizens-those who utilize their innovative skills and behaviors to claim both economic and social rights from which they had been previously excluded. The programs taught youth how to develop their own enterprises, to earn profits, and to save for their own futures; but youth used their education, skills and labor to provide for basic needs, to be included in society, and to support their and their families' well-being. By showing the contradictory effects of entrepreneurship education programs, the book asks international agencies and governments to consider how they can go beyond technical approaches of creating enterprises and increasing income, and head toward approaches that consider the kinds of labor that young people and communities value for their wellbeing. This book will be of interest to scholars and practitioners of education and international development, youth studies, African Studies and entrepreneurship/social entrepreneurship education.
Technical Report
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Millions Learning: Scaling up quality education in developing countries tells the story of where and how quality education has scaled in low- and middle-income countries. The story emerges from wide-ranging research on scaling and learning, including 14 in-depth case studies from around the globe. Ultimately, Millions Learning finds that from the slums of New Delhi to the rainforest in Brazil, transformational change in children’s learning is happening at large scale in many places around the world. We find that successful scaling of quality learning often occurs when new approaches and ideas are allowed to develop and grow on the margins and then spread to reach many more children and youth.
Chapter
This chapter investigates the ways youth employed their agency to resist, transgress, and undo traditional gender norms within their homes and communities. Building on the gender, education, and development literature, the ethnographically informed case study followed 19 young men and women in two peri-urban areas outside of Tegucigalpa, Honduras as they contested and negotiated their response to the gendered expectations that family, friends, and community members had for them as young women and young men. The chapter delves into the experiences of Arianna, Milton, and the Sport and Culture subcommittee of the CARE youth program as they negotiated aspects of their gender, and understanding of gender equity. The youth’s self-described ways in which their agency was enacted in quotidian life provides insights on local-level change, which occurred through individual and group action, and how their agency affected gender norms within home and community spaces.
Chapter
This chapter explores the ways in which youth in Nairobi, Kenya shape their livelihood trajectories upon obtaining vocational training. In a setting where schooling does not always adequately prepare youth for the workforce and youth face high unemployment rates, Kenyan youth need to seek out alternative opportunities that enable them to secure income-generating activities. In recent years, both governmental and nongovernmental initiatives have emerged to train youth in vocational and entrepreneurial skills and relevant knowledge in an effort to facilitate their entry into and movement within the economic marketplace. Using concepts of agency, including everyday agency, and empowerment this chapter explores how youth engage with the skills they have learned, along with new notions of self, to navigate their opportunities in the marketplace and make decisions about their livelihoods. The chapter also examines the social and economic realities that influence youths’ livelihood opportunities and decisions.
Chapter
This introductory chapter to the volume sets out the differing conceptualizations of youth agency and the role that education plays in fostering or constraining agency. The adjective of youth adds particular import to the concept of agency because it is a social and physiological construct reflecting both age and critical junctures and affects how they imagine themselves and enact their identities in relation to peers, family, schooling, and society. The chapter considers and critiques various perspectives of agency, attempting to move beyond the binary of the individually agentic person or the vulnerable youth toward a conceptualization of agency as socially embedded and constructed. It considers agency as not only holding beliefs or taking action, but also as imagining valued futures, and responding to one's social, cultural, and economic environments.
Chapter
The Sustainable Development goals (SDGs) and Vision 2030 is a thought provoking issue after un-accomplishment of MDGs 2015. This study was conducted by considering goal 5 of SDG vision 2030 about Empowering Women and girls in the perspectives of Education. The design of the study was descriptive in nature. A sample was selected in three different regions of Punjab (south, central and upper). A stratified random sampling technique was used to collect a proportionate sample size of 600 educated and uneducated women to collect data for the study. Data was collected by questionnaire, and focus group discussions. The results were collected using SPSS version 16 and inferential conclusions were made by content analysis. The main objective of the study was to identify the factors which play a pivotal role in empowering women and girls through education. The findings of the study revealed that the factors which riveted educated and uneducated women were different and varies by the area of Punjab they belong. Factors which affected the women of Rural South Punjab were ignorance and poverty, patriarchal thinking and the caste system. In Rural Central Punjab and the Rural Upper Punjab women were confronting economic status and gender discrimination in their inclination towards Education and Empowerment. Therefore it was concluded that Education may act as a vector to awareness, equity and equality for girls and women in their transformative process of empowerment and sustainable development of a country. The beneficiaries of the study are educated and uneducated women, stake holders, Policy makers and the future researcher.
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Purpose of the study: The empowerment of women is an important aim for them to be fully engaged in economic life and to achieve sustainable growth worldwide. One form of empowerment is to provide women with basic facilities. Methodology: The study also analyzed the impact on women's empowerment by primary data taken via multi-phase cluster sampling methods of household socioeconomic and cultural characteristics in Punjab. Given the diversity of nature and context, the 6-dimensional empirical polychoric principles of empowering women generate a stringent cumulative index of women's autonomy. Main Findings: The empirical findings show that empowering women and their six-dimensional effects are positive for women's years and jobs, legal advertisements, health care institutions, social participation, safe, smooth surroundings, communication, politics and residential negative participation, unpaid housekeeping, and the fear of violence. The results show that women's empowerment is positive. Applications of this study: This study can be more effective in the manner that to offer women free advice about their rights through electronic media, the government should establish an integrated legal cell with the local government. Novelty/Originality of this study: This research contribution in the field of women empowerment that how women can deal with legal advisory, to get jobs, protection in health and institutions.
Article
Aims and objectives Despite considerable interest in second language (L2) relative clauses (RCs)—one of the most difficult grammatical structures to learn—and in learner agency, few research efforts have been made to investigate how the latter informs the acquisition of the former. The current study looks at a native-like adult L2 Korean learner’s comprehension/production of Korean RCs and the trajectory of his acquisition of the RCs. Methodology The research instruments consisted of RC comprehension/production tasks and autobiographic interviews. Data and analysis The L2 learner’s responses in the comprehension task and those in the production task (audio-recorded) were reviewed for their accuracy. The processes of analyzing the interview data involved labeling themes/concepts forming from the data and interlinking categories to create larger, more general categories. Findings The results indicated that the L2 learner’s performance on the tasks was native-like, and that he had actively exercised his learner agency which had dynamically interacted with context to achieve such native-likeness. Originality This study distinguishes itself from the few previous studies on exceptional adult L2 learners by focusing on grammatical competence in relation to agency. Significance The current interpretive study—which used autobiographical interviews to examine the dynamic trajectory of L2 RC acquisition—indicates the importance of an L2 learner’s agency.
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Based on Martha Nussbaum’s list of central human functional capabilities, this chapter is an empirical study of the links between education and the development of girls’ and women’s capabilities in Bangladesh. The study arises from the expansion of girls’ education in Bangladesh; the widespread assumption that education helps lead to empowerment (which I take to be the development of capabilities); the claim by some that Bangladesh has already achieved the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of the empowerment of women, and the evidence indicating otherwise. Through interviews with adolescent girls about what going to school and “being educated” means to them, there is an exploration of which capabilities are enhanced by the educational process in Bangladesh, and which are not. I argue that education cannot be regarded as a basic capability unless it specifically addresses the process of developing the capabilities necessary to live a life one has reason to value.
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As human pressures on the environment increase and as conflicting demands on education become focused, schools have a greater responsibility to educate children to care for their environment. Results from this study demonstrated that students who were involved in the actual propagation and restoration of ecosystems, and who had positive experiences in doing so, were more likely to have positive environmental attitudes.
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