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Closing the Gender Gap in South Africa
In South Africa, women are not equal. The fight to end apartheid has been waged and won, but the fight for gender equality continues.
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Launched August 22, 2012
It has been less than 20 years since South Africa abolished apartheid and embraced democracy. The rainbow nation is now recognized for having the strongest economy on the African continent and one of the most progressive, liberal constitutions. Laws calling for gender equality have been passed, gay marriage has been legalized, and violence against women outlawed.
However, statistics show violence against women in South Africa is still a major societal problem. Violence against the LGBTI community also often goes unpunished. Ingrained attitudes in this traditional, patriarchal society have not changed and in rural areas tribal courts still reign over the rights of women.
By telling stories of South African women of all sexualities, Melissa Turley shows how these women fight not only for the equal rights afforded them in their constitution, but also for their basic human rights and dignity.
Melissa Turley
Student Fellow
Melissa Turley is a student at George Washington University where she was features editor of The GW Hatchet, the student-run campus newspaper. Also an intern at the Department of State,...
Region
Africa
Country
South Africa
Topics
Culture, Human Rights, Youth
Subjects
Africa, Gender issues, LGBT issues, Social Studies, Prejudice, Discrimination, and Stigma, The Political and Social Conditions of Developing Nations
Campus Consortium
The George Washington University
GATEWAYS
Recently​Articles​Slideshows​Audio
October 4, 2012 / Untold Stories
South Africa: Life in Langa
MELISSA TURLEY
Although apartheid has ended, its legacy lives on. Many South Africans still make their home in townships, segregated areas where they relocated after being forcibly removed from "white only" land.
September 26, 2012 / Untold Stories
South Africa: Law of the Land
MELISSA TURLEY
Women in rural South Africa are often ruled by two sets of law—traditional and constitutional. Their rights are protected under one, denied under the other. Many search for the in-between.
September 24, 2012 / Untold Stories
South Africa: Life in Ulundi
MELISSA TURLEY
Ulundi is a village like hundreds of others in South Africa but some of the women are different. They are members of the Rural Women's Movement and they are willing to stand up for their rights.
September 7, 2012 / Untold Stories
Women's Month in South Africa: Celebrations and Frustrations
MELISSA TURLEY
While South Africa celebrated women during official "Women's Month," organizations that provide counseling, support and shelter for female victims of rape and domestic violence struggled to stay open...
September 5, 2012 / Untold Stories
South Africa: Motherhood Denied to HIV-Positive Women
MELISSA TURLEY
HIV-positive women in South Africa are coming forward, reporting they have either been forcibly or coercively sterilized because of their HIV status.
August 31, 2012 / Untold Stories
MELISSA TURLEY
South African sex workers say it isn’t the clients they service they are most afraid of – it’s the police. Abuse is rampant and includes assault, exploitation, and bribery.
August 31, 2012 / Untold Stories
South Africa: President Zuma on Marriage and Motherhood
MELISSA TURLEY
Some South African women express dismay after President Zuma airs his thoughts on marriage and motherhood.
August 22, 2012 / Untold Stories
South Africa: In a Time of Mourning, a Call for Truth and Faith
MELISSA TURLEY
Faith leaders joined with members of South Africa's parliament in a service mourning the 34 protesters killed in a clash with police at Lonmin's platinum mine near Johannesburg.
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