Gender Equality Concepts 

Gender Equality Concepts 

Gender Equality Concepts 

Term Definition
Gender Refers to the socially constructed expectations, beliefs, norms attributed to girls, women, boys and men which are learnt from families and friends in the home, school, the community, workplace as well as the media, religion and the government. They vary from place to place and change over time.
Gender stereotypes These are socially constructed unquestioned beliefs about the different characteristics, roles and relations of women and men that are seen
as true and unchangeable which are reproduced and reinforced through processes such as the education and the influence of media.
 Sex Biological differences between women and men e.g. the fact that women can reproduce. Generally, these don’t change.
Gender Norms These are the standards and expectations to which women and men generally conform, within a range that defines a particular society, culture and community at that point in time. They are ideas about how women and men should be and act. Internalised early in life, they can establish a life cycle of gender socialisation and stereotyping. Failure to comply with can trigger strong social sanctions, such as ridiculing, ostracising or even violence, or less visible punishments such as exclusion from employment opportunities or marriage. People also self-regulate their own behaviour in order to conform to what they think is expected of them by others.
Women’s and girls’ empowerment This is about the expansion of women and girls’ abilities to make and influence choices that affect their lives. It is a process of transformative changes that are dynamic, iterative, and non-linear. It is about redistributing power between women and girls, and boys and men. It is context-specific and driven by women and girls themselves.
Gender sensitive Sex disaggregated data is used to highlight the differences between women and men and specific solutions to address the practical needs of women and men are considered to improve their daily condition based on an analysis of their practical needs.
Gender discrimination This describes a situation where people are treated differently simply because they are male or female, rather than on the basis of their individual skills or capabilities. Often, women and girls are disproportionately disadvantaged in all spheres of life.  For example, social exclusion, inability to participate in decision-making processes, and restricted access to and control of services and resources are common results of this.
Gender blind/unaware There is no analysis of the differing needs and concerns of women and men and data is not broken down by sex. Issues that prevent girls and women from enjoying equal rights and achieving full equality with men and boys are not identified.
Gender analysis This is a process to examine the different roles and responsibilities of women and men, their access to and control of resources and their different but equally significant experiences, priorities and capacities. It helps us understand women’s and men’s men and women’s roles and position in society, who does what and why. It can help understand the power dynamics within the household and the wider community. This analysis of relations, roles and power can help to identify what makes someone marginalised and programmes can be designed accordingly.
Gender transformative This is when an attempt is made to challenge the root causes of gender discrimination for example through addressing discriminatory gender norms, stereotypes and unequal power relationships between the sexes. Activities/methodologies might focus on more strategic needs which improve women and girls’ position in society
Gender equality This is when women and men, girls and boys enjoy the same status in society; have the same entitlements to all human rights; enjoy the same level of respect in the community; can take advantage of the same opportunities to make choices about their lives; and have the same amount
of power to shape the outcomes of these choices. It does not mean that women and men, or girls and boys are the same.
Intersectional analysis Aims to reveal multiple identities, exposing the different types of discrimination and disadvantage that occur as a consequence of the combination of identities. It aims to address the manner in which racism, patriarchy, class oppression and other systems of discrimination create inequalities that structure the relative positions of women.

 

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