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Overcoming Intersectional Barriers: Lessons From “Inspirational” Women in Nepal

Overcoming Intersectional Barriers: Lessons From “Inspirational” Women in Nepal
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Author(s): Sara L. Parker (Liverpool John Moores University, UK) and Kay Standing (Liverpool John Moores University, UK)
Copyright: 2019
Pages: 23
Source title: Gender Economics: Breakthroughs in Research and Practice
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Information Resources Management Association (USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-7510-8.ch019


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This chapter discusses the complexity and challenges of exploring the impact of gender on women's ability to realise their potential in Nepal. It demonstrates the limitations of using binary divisions to exploring ‘gender' as a key factor that impacts upon women's lives. By analysing interviews with ‘inspirational' women in Nepal conducted between 2009 and 2012 the chapter highlights the importance of exploring intersectional factors that also influenced women's life experiences. Based on interviews with 34 ‘inspirational' women in Nepal the chapter explores how the term ‘inspirational' is defines and discusses the range of work being done by so many women in Nepal that is truly inspiring. Through a discourse analysis of their stories of childhood and education we can see what key factors have played a role in enabling these women to realise their potential and to overcome intersectional barriers to work in a range of diverse positions, from the first female District Development Officer to the first women to gain her doctorate from overseas, to women who have set up NGOS working towards a more equitable and just society to others who have set up their own businesses or becoming leading academics. The conclusion draws together some key recommendations for future research and policy makers as well as those seeking to promote more equitable sustainable development that truly includes women in the process as autonomous, heterogeneous actors in the development process

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