3gender roles in the households it was shown that men must never been seen doing ‘women’s jobs’such as household domestics, additionally it was thought that a women could never be a householdhead. In the area of economic independence, worries were expressed, if a woman becomeseconomically independent, it would threaten the male position of power. This was also reflected indecision making and boys felt that if you allow a girl to make decisions she is making a fool of you.On issues of sexual relations some boys felt that a man should have multiple girlfriends and someexpressed the opinion that they can force a girl into marriage. The boys expressed anunderstanding that they are the privileged sex in Zambia, in that they get more respect, educationand jobs, overall many shared the opinion of one boy who stated;
‘I am happy God made me a boy’
(Dahlbäck, E et al, 2003:56). Due to these issues in Zambia and many parts of Africa, developmentactors viewed empowering women as imperative to the future of development.
1.3. Defining Empowerment
To be disempowered is to be socially excluded. Sociologist Burchardt (1999) empirical definition of social exclusion was ‘
If an individual is (i) geographically resident in a society (ii) cannot participatein the normal activities of citizens in that society (iii) would like to participate, but are prevented from doing so by factors beyond their control’
(Richardson and Le Grand, 2002:498). The process of social exclusion serves to exclude social groups from benefits and rights that are considerednormal. Often social exclusion operates from
yet women’s disempowerment stems frompatriarchal structures and norms at the community level. Empowerment has been defined as
‘theexpansion in people’s ability to make strategic life choices in a context where this ability was previously denied to them’
(Kabeer, 2004:18). In this sense empowerment is about thetransformation of power relations between men and women at four distinct levels; the household,the community, the economy and the state (Odutolu et al, 2003). In summary empowerment istaken to mean a process by which women may have the opportunity to access educational,economic and health resources, to engage in decision making on an equal basis, participate insocial spaces, and over all the ability to exercise agency over their lives without their sex beingviewed as a disadvantage.