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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Discourse of Maendeleo and the Politics of Women's Participation on Mount Kilimanjaro
Author:Mercer, Claire
Year:2002
Periodical:Development and Change
Volume:33
Issue:1
Period:January
Pages:101-127
Language:English
Geographic term:Tanzania
Subjects:social inequality
Chaga
development
women's organizations
Women's Issues
Development and Technology
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Politics and Government
organizations
Cultural Roles
Sex Roles
Link:https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-7660.00242
Abstract:Studies of participatory development and empowerment often fail to place people's actions and motivations within their wider cultural, social, political and economic context. Drawing on fieldwork carried out among Chagga village-based women's groups on Mount Kilimanjaro,Tanzania, in 1996 and 1997, this article deconstructs the dominant discourse of development ('maendeleo') to show how women's participation in their local organizations is used as a strategy to boost their social status and financial gains. Local, national and global discourses on development, modernity and gender are reappropriated by Chagga men and women to produce a normative Chagga developmental subjectivity which women can demonstrate by participating in women's groups. The over-representation of better-off and higher-status women in these groups suggests that, in excluding the poorest women, participation in women's groups is serving to legitimate, and perpetuate, existing inequalities within Chagga society. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum.
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