Reflect and discuss: Gender inequality in Mercy’s story

Homepage Forums Prevention Essentials Refresher Discussion Board Session 4: Causes Reflect and discuss: Gender inequality in Mercy’s story

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    Atusaye Nyondo

      In what ways does gender inequality enable violence in Mercy’s life and community?

      By reinforcing exclusionary social norms that undermine women and girl’s opportunities for education, income and independence. For instance, in Mercy’s life and community gender inequality started from her childhood, robbed her childhoods and limit the chances of girls in her community. Mercy and a number of girls in her community are denied their rights, kept from school, forced to marry and subjected to violence. The gender discrimination displayed in Mercy’s life and community gives unequal treatment, including privilege and priority, on the basis of gender. It appears there is deeply entrenched gender prejudices from the moment girls are born where girls and boys face unequal gender norms regarding expectations and access to resources and opportunities, with lifelong consequences in their homes, schools and communities. For example, in Mercy’s life and community boys are encouraged to go to school and get an education to prepare for work, while girls carry heavy household responsibilities that keep them from school, increasing the odds of child marriage and pregnancy.

      In what ways could violence worsen gender inequalities in her life?

      Violence is both a cause and a consequence of gender inequality. As observed from Mercy’s case study, violence shift power relations within her households and community. This can result into abuse of the power imbalance between her and her husband. This can become a means for her husband and the community at large to use it as a social control norm that maintains unequal power relations between women and men and reinforce women’s subordinate status. Violence against could be is used to enforce gender roles and norms, assume that women are inferior to men, and that men have the right to control women. As a result, gender inequalities could be perpetuated across generations.

      Batamuliza Gloria

        Gender inequality enable violence in Mercy’s life and community in a way that Mercy did not have the opportunity to continue school like her brother and ended up with un planned pregnancy and got married un planned as well which caused her to encounter difficulties with family cores to cater for her family and at the same time go to market ant earn some money. All these was violent to Mercy and could affect the community because Mercy is not able to contribute anything to the community since she is busy with family cores. or is always in private cores.

        Having been persuaded by a boy leading her to have unplanned pregnancy worsened gender inequality all caused by not having same opportunity with her brother of attending school.

        Langi Malamba

          1. Gender inequality as enabler:

          There are ascribed roles which further disposes women like Mercy and relegates them to being baby making machines . Girls are discouraged for seeking education and access is only limited to boys (they get resources, opportunities and are positioned to be powerful (provider status) which is how Clinton managed to use SEA to gain favour with Mercy and later married her and continued to physically, emotional and probably economically abused her as she ended up doing all the chores , raising the children as unpaid labour nd also going to the markets to sell. The church also played a role in preaching chastity and submissiveness etc in relationships.

          2. Violence and inequality
          She is objectified in the loveless relationship with no voice as she is perceived as having no rights, and the family will probably ostracize her if she returns home to flee the abuse and violence (stigma), the church will also admonish and shame her for being a bad wife and she may suffer secondary victimization and abuse.

          Anne Ngunjiri

            Gender inequality enable violence in Mercy’s life and community: Being female in a patriachal society, mercy feels like she cannot speak up about anyhitng, particulalry anything she may want; her husband is the one to control all apects of her life. Also by virtue of being female, she is discriminated against and not allowed to go to school which limits her development, future status.
            There are clear geidner roles that ar eupheld in her society, which discriminate against the girls and not for the boys. This stamps the patriachal authority where the men, boys are treated as greater beings/memebrs of socety and women/girls are subordinate. Therefore Mercy experiences GBV due to these inequitable spcial and cultural norms in her upbringing and society.

            ways violence could worsen gender inequalities in her life: The kind of violence Mercy experences for example controlling behaviours from her husband over the family’s resources, roles that inhibit her desires, and does not offer a safe space fo rher to speak out. As long as she cannot guarantee her and her children’s safety, she will not voice her needs and concerns.This silence, in turn, is interpreted as tolerance to the violence she is going through and the socity normalises it. thus men are allowed to contiue with their controlling behaviour and have power and control in the relationships. similarly, boys in families are allowed to think, feel they are superior to girls at a tender age and the same narrative is observed when they are adults.

            Joan Lanyero

              Gender inequality reinforces VAW in the following ways;
              1. The boys being valued than the girls e.g playing football while girls are cooking, going to school while girls stay at home, girls being looked at as liability in the sense that they are married off and will give birth. This compromises and automatically demeans the girls while placing the boys at a higher level in getting good jobs like being a doctor and thus earning better than girls if at all they get a job!! This therefore reinforces VAW like economic violence as you are denied education, better income, emotional as you keep comparing and wonder what life would be like.
              2. At community level – the socialization of patriarchy, boys and men looked at as the ones who are vital affects the way community looks at this as normal and okay and thus perpetuates VAW e.g women are beaten and nothing is done about it.

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