Integration of Gender Issues into the University Curriculum
Gender as a field of study started with the premise that the conventional established academic disciplines present male world view.
By this we mean that the female perspective has not been included e.g. History – the history of wars and achievements etc have given us names of great generals and leaders, scientists – most of whom are male.
In the curriculum, important areas such as research methods have used the conventional accepted methods which leave out women’s emphasize getting data from ‘heads of households’, statistical data etc.
Gender as a cross-cutting field has encouraged scholars and researchers to examine the various fields side by side to include the missing variable. Therefore it could be said to have promoted integration.
Gender / Biology
Until recently there has been a widely held belief that there is a biological basis for women’s status in society and that psychological and social differences between the sexes can be attributed to biological causes, (Andersen, M.L, 1982). This included both beliefs and values attached to femininity and masculinity, roles and expectations about men and women. Cross-cultural research, however, has shown that, other than child-bearing, all such characteristics have been socially constructed and are not inherently biological as is corroborated by the widely different concept of femininity and masculinity form one society to another and the changing and dynamic nature of gender roles and identities over time.
Gender mainstreaming was established as a global strategy for promoting gender equality through the Platform for Action at the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995. It is defined as ‘the process of assessing the implications for women and men of any planned action, including legislation, policies or programmes, in all areas and at all levels. It is a strategy for making women’s...