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Book chapter Book chapter Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue
Title:Costs and Rewards: Exchange in Relationships: Experiences of Some Ghanaian Women
Author:Ampofo, Akosua AdomakoISNI
Book title:Transforming female identities: women's organizational forms in West Africa
Year:1997
Pages:177-194
Language:English
Geographic term:Ghana
Subjects:women
household income
sexuality
Cultural Roles
Abstract:While love, affection, sexual desire and the desire for children continue to play important roles in partner selection, at the same time it appears that increasingly many young women in contemporary Ghana choose partners depending on the latters' ability to support them financially. This chapter explores the relationship between low income and the nature of sexual relationships among a group of young single women in contemporary Ghana. It is based on an analysis of a total of 46 interviews with women in Accra and Kumasi. The data suggests that to different degrees and in varying forms, women in low-income sectors such as the informal economy, or low-paying salaried employment such as the civil service, have begun to see sexual relationships as an economic strategy. As women's income-earning options decline, they may view sexual relationships as either a direct means of support, or as a means of gaining access to capital. In order to place the discussion in context, the author begins by offering a background to the economic situation in Ghana and a description of traditional and changing marriage patterns, particularly among the matrilineal Akan, who make up 63 percent of the study sample. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in French.
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