Emancipation of women refers to the efforts and initiatives aimed at securing equal and just rights for women as well as eradicating and curbing gender discrimination from institutions, laws as well as the behavioral trends in the society. The women emancipation began in the 19th century as the women’s right movement which aimed at obtaining improved statuses of women in the community. The initiative was aimed at demanding for women’s rights in voting, also termed as suffrage as well as the same equal privileges as men. The movement was headed by some of the women reformers.
Gender inequality refers to the idea or circumstance in which men and women are not equal. It is also defined as the wrong perception or treatment of people partly or wholly as a result of their gender. Gender inequality is bred by arguably socially constructed variations in gender duties. Gender systems are known to be hierarchical and dichotomous, and sex binary can reflect the many dimensions of everyday life manifested by the inequalities. These differences are no different from the leadership position in Kenya where women are segregated and their rights repressed.
Women are entitled to rights and duties to take part in leadership in most nations actively. According to studies and researches conducted, other than the functions and powers, a different political scope is achieved when women participate in management and leadership. It is believed that problems related to perpetual and indefinite poverty can be solved when more women are in leadership and politics since they are affected most. Balanced decision-making processes, as well as building and development of the nation, is achieved through women’s leadership (Falola & Fwatshak, 2011). Some of the great concerns to women leaders have been found to be health, education, women’s economic empowerment, gender violence and discrimination, dignity, rights, and democracy which translate to national development.
The principality of women’s social, political and economic equality has been significantly recognized through global advances put in place. However, there is the continued marginalization of women in many communities and societies in terms the spheres of decision-making and leadership in the world. A study conducted in 2009 by the researchers, 30.9 percent of the employees in the public service in various countries is made up of women with 72 percent being in the lower calibers and positions. Political representation, the judiciary and the leadership of political parties also show similar inequalities with only a small percentage of parliaments being held by women (Okebiro, 2014). However, it is ironical to note that women have been on the lead championing for the plans and strategies in support and advocacy of their rights and equal treatment, a move that has been boosted by the 3rd World Conference of Women held in Nairobi in 1985. Despite their championship, their spirit has not only been ineffective in the achievement of active political participation and having leadership positions in the country, but also they only support and observe women’s movements succeed in neighboring states such as Uganda, Tanzania, and Rwanda grow and succeed (Okebiro, 2014). These countries, according to global statistics, are on the lead in women’s leadership and representation in elective positions with Rwanda having 56.3 percent, Tanzania got 30 % and 31 % for Uganda.
The change in women’s lifestyle led to them getting an education. They, therefore, gained reading and writing skills. This helped them in the development of education-related activities such as becoming writers and authors. Many women rose in such fields during this period. The education of women was however considered to be the one that taught them on domestic roles and social activities. Further training was not supported since its purpose was just to give the woman a better womanhood. There are some who were lucky enough to attain a level of education similar to that of men. Their rights, however, were still being passed on to their husbands upon marriage although some few alterations were made to this over time.
The educated women started advocating for the equal access to education for both genders. There was also a debate on the marriage laws since they heavily favored the men. This, however, did not favor the women as much as expected. Women have over time fought for equality, and sometimes for supreme power higher than men’s. This happens all over the world. Some prominent women led others in fighting for their justice since the 18th Century. They, however, met a lot of challenges, including execution (Bland, 1979). Madame Roland is an excellent example in this case. She was executed after being charged with treason. She had been advocating for the rights of her fellow women in France. Women have continued speaking out against the traditional roles and gender inequality in justice systems. They have been doing so through actively participating in writing and being activists.
The late 20th Century experienced a continuation of the revolution. There has been a change in the way people perceive the roles according to gender.There is a notable change in the 21st Century since then. Many women have taken up different professional careers and have gained an education. Many people now feel that the household income should be raised by both the man and the woman. There is, therefore, need for the woman to work. There has been a massive evolution of the roles and rights of women as compared to the eighteenth and twentieth century. This has taken time to cultivate, and the struggle continues since there is still a gap between men and women up to date. Statistics have revealed that participation of women in governance acts as a predictor of peace. In nations and countries where women are empowered across a variety of spheres, the states have less likelihood of going to war or conflicting with their neighbors.
Women have an extensive history in the military though not always in a uniform. For instance, in 1799 the first female soldier received her early pension due to her services during the civil war. The first women who ever enlisted in the military joined the United States Marine Corps reserves and after that woman was seen taking up combat roles for the first time. Women continued to take up combat roles without any fear, and as years went by, they began taking up leadership position like Warrant Officer. In 1967, a group of women was ordered to a combat zone in Vietnam for the first time (Bland, 1979).
Over the years, women did play a large part in the success of armed forces, and this resulted in the Defense Department lifting all gender-based rules on military services beginning in 2016. This move opened not only job opportunities for women in the military but also duty positions, promotion opportunities and schools were ready to accept women. Wilson argues that this move only meant that all women currently in the service and all recruits were going to be allowed to work in any military job of their preference as long as they meet the required gender-neutral standards and any other requirement (Bland, 1979).
Options in support and strengthening of women who desire to pursue political activities are identified. There is a dire need for well-structured mentoring projects and programs and a better and proper understanding of female politicians on the engagement with media. Acquaintance with local, national and international concerns is also required. There is also a necessity in the renegotiation of gender duties to ensure more equitable sharing of household roles and responsibilities between males and females thus giving young women an opportunity to take part in leadership as is the case with small boys (Falola & Fwatshak, 2011). The need to educate the community on the necessity of shifting their views on effective and efficient leadership is also significant. Political parties are encouraged to embrace inclusion policies in which gender develops a central ground of the composition. Formal education should also condemn and discourage any gender-related violence, particularly oppression aimed at women in leadership campaigns (Minja, 2017). The education should further re-socialize people on gender fairness and equity principles and should begin at an early stage at which boys and girls get messages encouraging them to the desire for political leadership.
From the precedent, it is evidence that there are major objectives and efforts in ensuring women are adequately represented at all governance levels. This representation has been recognized as essential and fundamentally, a legal, human right. It is also in agreement with the principality of equal democratic representation. Despite the fact that capitalism had a significant contribution, it was not the main contributor to the emancipation of women.
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