Is microfinance an effective tool of empowerment for women living in the developing world? Discuss with reference to at least two case studies.
Module title: Gender and Development
Essay counts for 50% of a module and 1/5th of my final year grade so VERY important!
4 areas to focus on: Comprehension, Anaylsis, Critique, Presentation
COMPREHENSION: Demonstrates exemplary command of the subject matter including, where appropriate, methodological, technical and scholarship skills.
ANALYSIS: Presents a completely focused, relevant and well-structured answer with full and accurate development of concepts/theories, and excellent use of evidence.
CRITIQUE: Understands and evaluates relevant arguments, debates and/or interpretations in a manner that demonstrates an exceptional capacity for independent thought. This may amount to an extension of existing arguments, debates and/or interpretations.
PRESENTATION: Demonstrates complete command of techniques of academic writing with particular reference to structure, referencing/sourcing and spelling/grammar.
There are reading questions and assigned reading for this essay.
What opportunities do microfinance schemes offer to women living in the developing world?
Are such schemes a means of empowering or disciplining the economic activities carried out by women?
Often people structure essays around reading questions.
Bateman, M. (2010) Why Doesn’t Microfinance Work? The Destructive Rise of Local Neoliberalism, Zed Books
Chant, S. (ed. 2010) Part IX in The International Handbook of Gender and Poverty: Concepts, Research, Policy, Edward Elgar
Kabeer, N. (1998) ‘Money Can’t Buy Me Love’? Re-evaluating Gender, Credit and Empowerment in Rural Bangladesh’, IDS Discussion paper No 363 available to download at http://www.ids.ac.uk/files/Dp363.pdf
Johnson, S. (2005) ‘Gender Relations, Empowerment and Microcredit: Moving on from a Lost Decade’, The European Journal of Development Research, 17, pp. 224–248
Lairap-Fonderson, J. (2002) ‘The Disciplinary Power of Micro-Credit: Examples from Kenya and Cameroon’ in J. L. Parpart, S. M. Rai and K. Staudt (eds. 2002) Rethinking Empowerment: Gender and Development in a Global/Local World, Routledge
Mayoux, L . (1998) ‘Women’s Empowerment and Micro-Finance Programmes: Strategies for Increasing Impact’, Development in Practice, 8(2) pp. 235–241
Rankin, K. N. (2002) ‘Social Capital, Microfinance and the Politics of Development’, Feminist Economics, 8(1) pp. 1–24
Visvanathan, N. and K. Yoder (2011) ‘Women and Microcredit’ in N. Visvanathan, L. Duggan and L. Nisonoff (eds. 2011) The Women, Gender and Development Reader – second edition, Zed Books
Vonderlack, R. M. and M. Schreiner (2002) ‘Women, Microfinance, and Savings: Lessons and Proposals’, Development in Practice, 12(5) pp. 602–612
Dichter, T. and M. Harper (2007) What’s Wrong with Microfinance? Practical Action Publishing
Goetz, A. M. and R. Sen Gupta (1996) ‘Who Takes the Credit? Gender, Power and Control over Loan Use in Rural Credit Programmes in Bangladesh’, World Development, 24(1) pp. 45–63
Hunt, J. and N. Kasynathan (2001) ‘Pathways to Empowerment? Reflections on Microfinance and Transformation in Gender Relations in South Asia’, Gender & Development, 9(1) pp. 42–52
Islam, T. (2007) Microcredit and Poverty Alleviation, Ashgate
Johnson, S. (2000) ‘Gender Impact Assessment in Microfinance and Microenterprise: Why and How’, Development in Practice, 10(1) pp. 89–93
Mills, S. (2010) ‘Renegotiating the Household: Successfully Leveraging Women’s Access to Housing Microfinance in South Africa’ in S. Chant (ed. 2010) The International Handbook of Gender and Poverty: Concepts, Research, Policy, Edward Elgar
Momsen, J. (2010) Chapter 8, Gender and Development – second edition, Routledge
Mosley, P. and J. Rock (2004) ‘Microfinance, Labour Markets and Poverty in Africa: a Study of Six Institutions’, Journal of International Development, 16(3) pp. 467–500
Mushtaque, A., R. Chowdhury and A. Bhuiya (2004) ‘The Wider Impacts of BRAC Poverty Alleviation Programme in Bangladesh’, Journal of International Development, 16(3) pp. 369–386
Shantana R., S. R. Halder, and P. Mosley (2004) ‘Working with the Ultra-Poor: Learning from BRAC Experiences’, Journal of International Development, 16(3) pp. 387–406
Wilson, K. (2011) ‘From Missionaries to Microcredit? ‘Race’, Gender and Agency in Neoliberal Development’ in N. Visvanathan, L. Duggan and L. Nisonoff (eds. 2011) The Women, Gender and Development Reader – second edition, Zed Books
Zohir, S. and I. Matin (2004) ‘Wider Impacts of Microfinance Institutions: Issues and Concepts’, Journal of International Development, 16(3) pp. 301–330
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