Societal Perceptions of Women’s Education and the Related Process of Gender Disparity: A Case Study of Kakamega, Kenya

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Date

2010-12

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Abstract

This research project aims to identify which aspect of society in Kakamega, Kenya, wields the most influence over perceptions of women’s education. Through conducting primary research in the form of surveys, interviews, and focus groups, this research determines what most affects a parent’s decision to send a daughter to school. The findings reveal a dynamic process of social factors at work that create the condition of Kakamega. This process entails two opposing ideological forces, traditional thought and progressive reform, converging in an environmental context of financial stress and health disadvantages. Early marriage is both at the crux of this process and also a byproduct of the process. Trapping girls in a nearly inescapable cycle of low educational attainment and early marriage, the condition of Kakamega is undergoing transformation. Despite the presence of traditional ideologies and this repressive cycle, women’s empowerment groups and progressive reformative efforts are palpable signs of hope and change for gender parity and for the girls of Kakamega, Kenya.

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Public Policy Studies Undergraduate Honor Thesis.

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Citation

Cowan, Caroline (2010). Societal Perceptions of Women’s Education and the Related Process of Gender Disparity: A Case Study of Kakamega, Kenya. Honors thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/3165.


Dukes student scholarship is made available to the public using a Creative Commons Attribution / Non-commercial / No derivative (CC-BY-NC-ND) license.