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  1. 1

    Campaigning with partners for the MDGs: a case study of Brazil.

    Dimitrova D; de Oliveira MC

    New York, New York, United Nations Development Programme [UNDP], [2005]. 14 p.

    The deepening of democratic institutions, gains in macroeconomic stability and rapid expansion of prosperity contribute to an overall encouraging context for sustainable development in Brazil. Yet, despite these numerous advances, real poverty has only moderately declined, and inequality persists. In Brazil, economic and social status tends to vary by geography, race and gender, a legacy of the country's history. Imposed and de facto colonial and post-colonial divisions among indigenous peoples and descendents of Portuguese settlers, African slaves and European, Middle Eastern and Asian immigrants created persistent structures of exclusion and inequality. In the 1950s, during the military government, a strategy of import substitution prioritized rapid industrial expansion, and helped to bring about significant, sustained economic growth. Benefits, however, accrued disproportionately to the upper classes at the expense of workers and unions. The industrialization contributed to the expansion of the favelas (urban slums), one of Brazil's greatest contemporary challenges, by promoting urban migration while infrastructure and social support did not expand at the same pace. (excerpt)
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  2. 2
    Peer Reviewed

    Gender construction in the media: a study of two Indian women politicians.

    Bathla S

    Asian Journal of Women's Studies. 2004 Sep 30; 10(3):[11] p..

    This study seeks to examine the responses of the newspaper media towards two Indian women politicians and the processes of gender construction in political communication. Under a system of universal adult suffrage and the constitutional assurance of social, political and economic equality, Indian women were given rights that were the envy of women in more advanced nation states. Political parties that should play a crucial role in training and encouraging women to enter the public arena are hostile, generally dosing the gates of the upper echelons of party structures to aspiring or deserving women. How are such women viewed by society and how do the media present them? It is within this background that this paper examines the portrayal of two women politicians, that is, Jayalalitha Jayaram and Sushma Swaraj in the Indian English language press in the pre-election period of January and February 1998. Jayalalitha appeared as a calculating, opportunistic, extremely corrupt, and arrogant leader, while Sushma Swaraj was identified with a clean image and one who fulfilled traditional norms and expectations of feminine identity. The particular construction of this frame of `ideal/good woman' and `bad woman' needs to be explored within the discourses of India's colonial and nationalist past, wherein women were perceived as representatives of the `private' and their feminine virtues were perceived to be the essence of the nation. (author's)
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  3. 3
    Peer Reviewed

    Who prepares dinner tonight?

    Min X

    Asian Journal of Women's Studies. 1999 Mar 31; 5(1):[6] p..

    For many centuries, the kitchen has been regarded as the world of women. However, it has gradually become a world of both men and women. Changes in women's roles in the kitchen reflect the transforming social position of women. Accordingly, change in men and women's performance of housework mirrors a shift in the sexual division of labor. This is accompanied by changed attitudes as well. For example, according to one investigation made by the undergraduates of the university where Ms. Wang works, only 28 percent of the women undergraduates agreed with the proposition: "A woman should try her best to be a good wife and mother, whether or not she is successful in her career." This percentage is much lower than that of women of Ms. Wang's generation. Moreover, Ms. Wang's daughter, [Lian Lian], who is much younger than the undergraduates, not only has a great longing for advanced kitchen facilities in the future, but has her own views about cooking and housework. When asked if in the future, she would like to prepare meals for the whole family as her mother has done, Lian Lian replied definitely: "I would not like to." Lian Lian likes to play with one of the boys in her class, and she once told her mother: "If I get married to him in the future, I will be a very lucky girl, because his father is a chef, and I may not have to cook much then." (author's)
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  4. 4

    Local organisation, democracy and urban youth -- a case study in Zambia.

    Schlyter A


    This case study focuses on the experience of young women and men in Lusaka's George compound (Zambia) during the political transition, and their views on the transition and the organization of their community. It outlines how, in one party system, the local party organization was seen as the lowest level of local government and explores how youths in different positions have different experiences and draw different conclusions. More than 40 young men and women were interviewed, essay writings were organized in secondary schools, and figures from the 1990 census have been elaborated for this study. Based on data collected, it is concluded that the dominant attitude among the youth in George compound is disappointment in the promises of democratization, disinterest in politics, and cynicism. The study also showed that variations in views were closely related to the variations of living conditions. Moreover, the political transition has not changed gender relations. Nevertheless, there are signs of a growing understanding of the new system of multi-partyism and of an engagement with ideas about local organization.
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  5. 5

    Strength in numbers.

    Lakkis S

    LINKS. 1999 Mar; 3-4.

    A case study showing the attitudes and actions reinforcing discrimination against women's rights in Lebanon is presented. The study illustrates the way in which the public s views and the interests of families and local dignitaries can manipulate opinions. Organizations aimed at protecting women's rights have found strength in working together. The Lebanese League, an organization comprised of 17 women's and human rights associations, has established a center and a telephone hotline to encourage abused women to disclose and discuss their situation. The center provides support in the form of legal, psychological and medical assistance. Another organization working with the Lebanese League towards the same vision is the Lebanese Physically Handicapped Union. Efforts to lobby around a Lebanese legislation discriminating against women so far had no success, but all organizations involved are aware of the need to work through a range of interventions, and to take a long-term view, before they can count on any success.
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  6. 6

    Unwed mothers.

    Mary A

    In: Quest for gender justice: a critique of the status of women in India, edited by Sebasti L. Raj. Madras, India, T.R. Publications, 1991. 98-110.

    The socioeconomic factors that lead to unwed motherhood in India are complex. The way that neglect contributes to this phenomenon is illustrated by the case of a daughter of an upper-middle class family consigned to life in a boarding school while her parents lived in the Middle East. This young woman became pregnant after meeting a young man who offered her the attention and love she was missing. She had her baby and eventually married the young man. Another young woman in a similar situation choose abortion and suffers extreme guilt from her decision. Economic deprivation can also cause unwed motherhood as illustrated by the case of a young widow who worked as a housemaid. Eventually the son of the household fathered a child by the widow and then by her eldest daughter. In some cases, women are betrayed by the men who entice them into sexual relationships only to desert them when a pregnancy occurs. A fourth cause is juvenile delinquency that arises from unstable family relationships and from poverty. The problems faced by unwed mothers include psychological and emotional stress as well as social criticism, ostracism, and isolation. In addition, unmarried mothers place a burden on their families who must deal with the loss of status in society. If an unwed woman becomes pregnant as a result of rape, she should receive the help she needs and there should be no stigma attached to her children. In general, however, it is better for society to counter the conditions that lead to unwed motherhood than to deal with the aftermath. Society has a responsibility, however, for helping to restore the dignity of unwed mothers.
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  7. 7

    Religion and roll-call voting in Idaho. The 1990 abortion controversy.

    Witt SL; Moncrief G

    In: Understanding the new politics of abortion, edited by Malcolm L. Goggin. Newbury Park, California, Sage Publications, 1993. 123-33.

    This document is the seventh chapter in a book which provides a framework for considering the "new" politics of abortion in the US (created when the Supreme Court gave states more leeway in regulating access to abortion) and the second of four chapters in a section devoted to an exploration of conflict in a variety of institutional settings. This chapter analyzes the legislative behavior of politicians in Idaho during a 1990 abortion controversy caused by the passage and veto of bill H625 which would have created the most restrictive abortion law in the US. In this study, the unit of analysis was the individual legislator and the dependent variable was the vote. Independent variables were the legislator's gender, party affiliation, and religion and the legislative district's religious composition. After an introduction, the chapter describes the Bill and its legislative journey from its introduction on February 9th to its veto on March 31st. The literature on legislative decision-making is reviewed to explain that this vote can be categorized as an "abnormal" decision based on factors which differ from the norm. It was found that 41/46 members of the Mormon church, 21/59 Protestants, and 10/20 Catholics voted for H625. The pro-choice position was supported by 65% of the female and 36% of the male legislators and by 26/39 Democrats but only 27/86 Republicans. In the subsequent 1990 election, the primary sponsor and author of the Senate version of the bill and the Senate Majority Leader were defeated by pro-choice women. The sponsor won reelection in 1992 after promising not to pursue abortion legislation. Anti-abortion groups have indicated that they will again seek legislation to restrict abortion rights if a pro-life governor is elected in the state.
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  8. 8

    Environmental contamination, public hygiene, and human health concerns in the Third World: the case of Nigerian environmentalism.

    Adeola FO

    ENVIRONMENT AND BEHAVIOR. 1996 Sep; 28(5):614-46.

    Recent evidence suggests that people in Third World countries have similar environmental concerns as their counterparts in developed countries. This paper examines responses to a public opinion poll in Nigeria, discusses the development of national environmental policy, and provides a theoretical explanation for the evolution of Nigerian environmentalism. Although the Nigerian government has a bureaucracy for dealing with environmental issues, only 1% of the total budget is allocated to environmental management. Nigeria is experiencing soil erosion, deforestation, problems related to urban solid waste generation, industrial pollution, illegal importation of toxic chemicals, and uncontrolled dumping of hazardous materials. Rural ecological problems differ from urban ones. Environmental contamination and poor sanitation result in soil- and water-borne diseases. Several environmental groups operate at the state, regional, and national levels. Membership appears to be among elites. The anthropocentric belief in human supremacy over nature led to the world view known as the Dominant Social Paradigm (DSP); in western societies, the Human Exceptualism Paradigm (HEP), and in nonwestern societies, the Traditional Environmental Paradigm (TEP). In 1992 the Gallop International Institute conducted a Health of the Planet Survey in 24 industrialized and nonwestern nations. Findings in Nigeria indicate that 76% of the adult population sampled considered the economy the most important problem. Only 1% identified the environment as the most important. On specific environmental questions, 45% rated environmental problems in Nigeria as very serious, and 87% said they were personally very concerned. Global environmental problems were of lesser importance than local problems. Although the survey did not identify the sources of environmental concerns, the evidence suggests the persistence of traditional environmental conservation values.
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  9. 9

    Defining the features of sustainable development for a developing country: the Zimbabwe case.

    Hoole A; Milne G


    Despite two decades of efforts by planners and researchers to define the concept of sustainable development, most definitions remain too general. The definition of sustainable development must be more narrow in order for attainable goals to be set and realized. Such definitions will likely vary among countries according to countries' differing domestic contexts and national development policies. A national Delphi survey, using two sequential questionnaires, was conducted in Zimbabwe during late 1992 with a broad cross-section of stakeholders. The survey identified, clarified, and ranked 34 national objectives for environmentally sustainable development in Zimbabwe. Survey respondents weighted environmental objectives in development planning higher than both economic and social objectives. The authors expect this ranking of objectives to help guide Zimbabwe's efforts to implement environmentally sustainable development and associated policies.
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  10. 10

    Family planning goes public.

    Merritt AP

    INTEGRATION. 1992 Jun; (32):41-3.

    The Center for Family Orientation (COF), a private family planning agency with clinics in 8 provinces of Bolivia, initiated a bold, scientifically planned, and successful mass media campaign in 1986. As late as 1978 the Bolivian government had been hostile to COF. The Johns Hopkins University/Population Communication Services helped COF determine that the Bolivian public and its leaders were open to more information about family planning. Bolivia, the poorest Latin American country, then had 7 million people, expected to double in 27 years. There are 2 distinct indigenous groups, the Aymara and the Quechua, and Spanish-speaking people, centered in the cities of La Paz, Cochabamba, and Santa Cruz, respectively. Only 4% of couples use modern family planning methods. Initial surveys of 522 opinion leaders, 300 family planning users, focus groups of users, and a population survey of 1300 people in 8 provinces showed that 90% wanted modern family planning services. Radio was chosen to inform potential users about COF's services, to increase clinic attendance, and to involve men. To obtain support from public leaders, 10 conferences were held. The 1st series of radio messages focused on health benefits of family planning and responsible parenthood; the 2nd series gave specific benefits, information on child spacing, breast feeding, and optimal ages for childbearing. Besides 36,800 radio spots broadcast on 17 stations, booklets, posters, calendars, promotional items, and audiotapes to be played in public busses, were all designed, pretested, and revised. New acceptors increased 71% during the 11-month campaign. Success of the project influenced the start of the National Reproductive Health Project and new IEC efforts planned through cooperation of public and private institutions.
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  11. 11

    Public opinion and the adoption of family planning in a village ward in West Java, 1970-1973.

    van Norren B

    In: Profession: demographer. Ten population studies in honour of F.H.A.G. Zwart, [edited by] B. van Norren and H.A.W. van Vianen. Groningen, Netherlands, Geo Pers, 1988. 155-79.

    Based on case studies in a village ward in West Java, this paper gives an account of how local public opinion developed concerning family planning and how the process of family planning adoption was shaped by it. The events described took place in the early 1970s in the Cianyar ward of the village of Ciendah, on the southern border of the plain of Bandung. By the end of 1969 a family planning program was started in the village. From 1970-1973 about 35 couples became acceptors, 22 of whom were studied afterwards. 15 of these couples belonged to the non-orthodox group and 7 to the orthodox group of the community. According to the data, the adoption process started early but slowly among the non-orthodox community members and relatively late but rapidly among the orthodox. The description starts with a sketch of the sociopolitical relations in the community. Subsequently the opinions of the leaders and the influence thereof on the course of public opinion are extensively discussed. Then the influence of public opinion on the community members' motivating activities and on the adoption process are described. Within the non-orthodox group the adoption process started in all 3 social classes well before public opinion turned in 1972. In the process the couples of the higher class began quite early (beginning 1970) after which the couples of the middle and lower classes followed rather slowly (after about 1 1/2 years in the course of 1971). On the other hand within the orthodox group the adoption process started in all 3 social classes only during or after the turn of public opinion in 1972. In this case the couples of the higher and middle classes began late (1972) after which the couples of the lower class followed rather quickly (after about a good half year, beginning 1973). So long as public opinion was anti-family planning in Cianyar, it prevented the start of an adoption process among the orthodox and slowed down its take-off among the non-orthodox in the community. During and immediately following its turn to being pro-family planning, public opinion sped up considerably the adoption process among the orthodox members of the community.
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  12. 12
    Peer Reviewed

    The health guide scheme--the Mysore District, India: the community's perspective.

    Clay RM

    Medical Anthropology. 1985 Winter; 9(1):49-56.

    In order to make health services more accessible at the village level, the State of Karnataka began a Primary Health Care (PHC) Program involving Health Guides (HGs). These are local villagers who are trained in basic health services and who work in their own village. This research was conducted among village community members living in the Mysore District, where HGs had been working for 1 year. A total of 240 household members were interviewed using pretested, semi-structured survey instruments in 30 selected villages. Results indicate that 70% of the household members surveyed were aware of the HG scheme, and 58% said the HG was always or often available to them. According to the official guidelines set down by the State of Karnataka, the village community was requested to recommend 2 or 3 persons considered suitable by them to become HG candidates. However, survey results indicate that 99.6% had not been involved in the selection process in any way. When asked what the 4 most important functions of the HGs were, the household members responded overwhelmingly (98.3%) that the sole function was treating minor ailments. More of the household members surveyed went to the HGs to receive medical services than to any other persons. Of those who made HG contact, 52.2% reported that they were very satisfied and 44.4% said they had been partially satisfied by the medical services they had received. The vast majority of the community reported that they felt very little work was being done in the area of prevention (soakage pits, sanitary latrines, water supply, family planning and immunization). But these items were not perceived to be very important and seem to have little impact on the community's acceptance of the HG scheme and on its further continuation and expansion. A large majority of those interviewed wanted the HGs to visit their homes more often for health-related services. 20% of the community household members said they would be in favor of financing the HG honorarium or the HG drug supply, currently provided by the Government of India and the State of Karnataka. Finally, 92.1% felt the HG scheme should be continued in their area and 91.7% felt it should be expanded to other areas of the State. Suggestions are offered regarding ways to improve the community participation in this pilot area. Examples include regular home vistis by the HGs to all households using complete up-to-date household surveys; pictorial signs aroung the village area to advertise HG services; spending more time during training sessions on preventive aspects of the HG job and the adequate explanation of the philosophy of the HG scheme, with particular stress on the importance of preventive and promotive services. Such steps will ensure relevancy of the programs, ensure success of immediate activities, and pave the way for long-term changes in the communities themselves.
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