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Women's Voices from the Margins
Diaries from Kibera, Kenya
Women’s Voices from the Margins explores the coping strategies, agency, and resilience of women living in Kibera, Kenya—one of Africa’s largest slums. Based on a multi-year research project in which the author analyzed the diaries of 20 young women from Kibera, this thought-provoking book describes the women’s lives, the realities of gender-based violence, and their responses and coping strategies. Drawing on both qualitative journal accounts and quantitative surveys, Elizabeth Swart reveals the agency and strength of these women, who create opportunities for themselves and their children despite the violence and extreme poverty that are a daily actuality of life in Kibera. Taking a global feminist perspective, the author considers the women’s lives in the larger context of urbanization, globalization, and neo-liberal social policies. By presenting the voices of the young women alongside rich scholarly analysis, this engaging text will be a valuable resource to students and scholars of gender and women’s studies, sociology, international social work, and global studies.
Table of Contents
PART ONE: THE PLACE
Chapter 1: Kenya and Gender
Chapter 2: Kibera in the 21st Century
Chapter 3: Ethnographic Reflections and Decolonization
PART TWO: THE DIARIES
Chapter 4: Working with Diaries as Texts
Chapter 5: Hoping God Agrees
Chapter 6: Escape
Chapter 7: Betting Against the House
Chapter 8: Gender and Political Violence in Kibera
PART THREE: THE IMPLICATIONS
Chapter 9: Learning from the Diary Data
Chapter 10: Learning from the Survey Data
Chapter 11: Moving Forward