Library Header Image
LSE Research Online LSE Library Services

Doing gender from top to bottom?: the South African case

Beall, Jo ORCID: 0000-0002-1898-3872 (2001) Doing gender from top to bottom?: the South African case. Women: a Cultural Review, 12 (1). pp. 135-146. ISSN 0957-4042

Full text not available from this repository.
Identification Number: 10.1080/095740401750534402


By taking gender seriously, the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party in South Africa appeared to reverse the trend set by many liberation movements elsewhere: namely, women being mobilized as agents in struggles around class and race, yet denied the imperative of addressing gender subordination. Shortly after coming to power, the ANC adopted a national strategy for advancing gender equality. By doing so it demonstrated that it could rise above the limitations of its erstwhile 'woman question' position (Beall et al. 1989) and learn from the experience of other countries that had tried to institutionalize gender policies and structures. This in turn served to place South Africa at the cutting edge of experience in state-initiated gender policies and 'national machineries' for women. Nevertheless, South Africa's National Machinery for Advancing Gender Equality merits critical scrutiny, both in terms of its intrinsic aims and objectives and in relation to its potential for making an impact, given the development policy context of contemporary South Africa. Drawing on research conducted in South Africa over a number of years--during the 1980s (Beall et al. 1987) and, more recently, since 1997 (Beall 1997, 1998), it is possible to consider what lessons are to be learned from the institutionalization of gender-sensitive policy and practice in a complex institutional environment.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2001 Taylor & Francis
Divisions: International Development
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
Date Deposited: 09 Dec 2007
Last Modified: 15 May 2024 23:56

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item