Understanding Intra- and Inter- Household Gendered Power Dynamics in the Division and Time Allocation of Work and Resources: An Ethnographic Assessment of a Peanut-Farming Population in Rural Senegal

Authors: Jacqueline Banks*, Minnesota Population Center, Jessica Marter-Kenyon, University of Georgia, Codou Ndiaye, L'Université Gaston Berger, Maïmouna Diop, L'Université Gaston Berger, Samba Mbaye, L'Université Gaston Berger, Mamadou Ba, Centre de Recherche pour le Developpement Economique et Social (CRDES), Stuart Sweeney, University of California, Santa Barbara
Topics: Population Geography, Africa, Food Systems
Keywords: household, Senegal, peanuts, food security, family, demography, population, ethnography, work, time use, children, women, gender, agriculture
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2020
Start / End Time: 3:05 PM / 4:20 PM
Room: Granite A, Hyatt Regency, Third Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Achieving gender equality in agricultural development is fundamental to reductions in global poverty, hunger and malnutrition. Across the developing world, women make important contributions to farming and food systems. However, their efforts may be impacted by inefficient and inequitable allocations of labor and resources with respect to complex household structures and concomitant intra- and inter-household gendered power dynamics.
This study, a rapid ethnographic assessment of households reliant on peanut-farming in the Kaolack region of Senegal, constitutes the initial stage of a broader project to research how the initiation, timing, and spacing of births; intra- and inter-household power dynamics; and concurrent climate shocks impact engagement in various aspects of peanut production. The findings from this study will develop necessary baseline understandings of certain aspects of culture and social life situated in this place in order to move forward in examining questions regarding work, time use, and agricultural productivity. Thus, this study pays particular attention to women of childbearing age and proximate individuals that may share work and resources including her spouse, co-spouses, in-laws or older children.
Qualitative data collection will take place in February 2020 in several villages of the Kaolack region of Senegal by a mixed team of American and Senegalese field researchers. We will focus on: work and resource allocation, roles associated with gender, age, and kinship, cooperative and independent decision making, village-level leadership structure, definitions of households, aspects of the peanut value chain, and local understandings of the aforementioned constructs.

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