South-South Cooperation in Gender Politics: Trans-Regionalization as an Alternative Option for Sub-Saharan Africa

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Panel bei der VAD-Tagung "ZUKUNFT AFRIKA" an der Universität Bayreuth

12. Juni 2014, 9:00–11:00 & 11:30–13:30 Uhr, S 125

For decades, gender politics in Sub-Saharan Africa has been informed and influenced by the discourses of transnational women’s movements of which African women’s movements form a part. A second system of reference has been the gender politics of international institutions to which African women’s networks have likewise contributed a lot. Especially more recent approaches to (re-) negotiate gender relations in Sub-Saharan African countries represent efforts of translating as well as appropriating inter- and transnational norms and treaties. Nonetheless, these inter- and transnational aspects of gender politics still mirror conventional North-South relations, with Northern money and ideas dominating the discourse.

At the same time that their contributions to these known forms of transnationalization have taken place, African women and their organisations have continuously contested the frames of so-called global sisterhood. Furthermore, they have intensified different forms of regional and trans-regional South-South cooperation.

This panel seeks to explore the promise of South-South cooperation in gender politics for Sub-Saharan Africa. It also deliberates on the limitations of North-South relations, asks if different types of collaboration exist and which of these different forms of cooperation have asserted themselves. Especially on the level of civil society a host of questions are of interest, such as: whether and how the potential of existing South-South mechanisms have been exploited, how fora become pertinent and which topics in gender politics are negotiated. The panel is not limited to, but also includes, analyses on whether new forms of cooperation, new gender norms and visions of gender relations become relevant.


  • Prof. Dr. Uta Ruppert
  • Dr. Rirhandu Mageza-Barthel


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