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Title:Analysis of the problem of gender, class, and regional inequalities in peripheral states: A case study of Ghana
Author(s):Antwi-Nsiah, Cherub
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Huff, James O.
Department / Program:Geography
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Women's Studies
Abstract:This dissertation examines gender inequalities at the household level as related to overall national development thereby providing links between household research and policy analysis. The inquiry begins with the argument that institutionalized differences in access to formal education and property are two of the most important mechanisms influencing gender inequalities at the household level. Access to formal education and ultimately the level of education attained to a large extent determines access to other opportunities and resources. Property rights and relations also confer power and status on men and women differentially, which gives rise to inequalities in access to capital and credit. The empirical portion of the study built upon an in-depth survey of the activity patterns of males and females, intrahousehold dynamics relating to the division of labor and allocation of resources, and the extent to which gender, class, and region influence perceptions of status in society and assessments of life chances. This survey was completed for 1600 households in Ghana stratified by gender, class, region and sociocultural system.
The results of the study show that development has mixed effects on the status of women. The findings on education and property show that although women have limited resources relative to men, in absolute terms, women have more access to resources than they did a decade or two ago. The policy suggestions of the study revolve around improving opportunities for women to enroll in educational programs as well as improve retention rates for those enrolled. The results also show that although there is still a gender differential in control over property, women's ability to control property has improved. The key to women's access to property is through private acquisition, since access to property through inheritance is limited and women lack access to capital and credit. Further policy recommendations are made in each of these areas.
The study demonstrates an interaction effect between education and property. Women have more control over household investment decisions pertaining to education, although they may not be able to influence government policy to gain access to credit and inherited capital. Therefore to gain access to physical resources and land, women strive for more education, thereby gaining access to jobs and a significant income stream. Furthermore, women are getting around the problem of uncertain control over household resources by converting limited physical resources such as property and income into educational investment in their children, especially daughters.
Issue Date:1991
Rights Information:Copyright 1991 Antwi-Nsiah, Cherub
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog:AAI9136530
OCLC Identifier:(UMI)AAI9136530

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