Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index


Select areas to restrict search in scientific publication database:
10007452
Analyzing Culture as an Obstacle to Gender Equality in a Non-Western Context: Key Areas of Conflict between International Women’s Rights and Cultural Rights in South Sudan
Authors:
Abstract:
International human rights treaties ensure basic rights to all people, regardless of nationality. These treaties have developed in a predominantly Western environment, and their implementation into non-western contexts often raises questions of the transfer-ability of value systems and governance structures. International human rights treaties also postulate the right to the full enjoyment and expression of one’s own culture, known as cultural rights. Many cultural practices and traditions in South Sudan serve as an obstacle to the adaptation of human rights and internationally agreed-upon standards, specifically those pertaining to women’s rights and gender equality. This paper analyzes the specific social, political, and economic conflicts between women’s rights and cultural rights within the context of South Sudan’s evolution into a sovereign nation. It comprehensively evaluates the legal status of South Sudanese women and –based on the empirical evidence- assesses gender equality in four key areas: Marriage, Education, Violence against Women, and Inheritance. This work includes an exploration into how South Sudanese culture influences, and indeed is intertwined with, social, political, and economic spheres, and how it limits gender equality and impedes the full implementation of international human rights treaties. Furthermore, any negative effects which systemic gender inequality and cultural practices that are oppressive to women have on South Sudan as a developing nation are explored. Finally, those areas of conflict between South Sudanese cultural rights and international women’s rights are outlined which can be mitigated or resolved in favor of elevating gender equality without imperializing or destroying South Sudanese culture.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):

References:

[1] African Development Bank (2016) Infrastructure action plan in South Sudan: A program for sustained strong economic growth - African development bank. Available at: http://www.afdb.org/en/countries/east-africa/south-sudan/infrastructure-action-plan-in-south-sudan-a-program-for-sustained-strong-economic-growth/ (Accessed: 10 December 2016).
[2] Ali, N. (2011) Gender and State Building in South Sudan Special Report. Available at: http://www.usip.org/publications/gender-and-statebuilding-in-south-sudan (Accessed: 09 October 2016).
[3] Arnold, M. and LeRiche, M. (2012) South Sudan: From revolution to independence. London: C Hurst & Co Publishers.
[4] Asomah, J.Y. (2015) ‘Cultural rights versus human rights: A critical analysis of the troksoi practice in Ghana and the role of civil society’, African Human Rights Law Journal, 15(1), pp. 129–149. doi: 10.17159/1996-2096/2015/v15n1a6.
[5] Ayton-Shenker, D., (1995) The Challenge of Human Rights and Cultural Diversity. United Nations Department of Public Information, 5.
[6] Beshir, M.O. (1968) ‘The southern Sudan: Background to conflict’, African Historical Studies, 2(1), p. 175. doi: 10.2307/216349.
[7] Bubenzer and Lacey (2013) Opportunities for Gender Justice and Reconciliation in South Sudan. Available at: https://www.cmi.no/file/2433-IJR-Brief-No-10-South-Sudan-Gender-Justice-and-Reconciliation-Bubenzer-and-Lacey.pdf (Accessed: 12 October 2016).
[8] Care International (2014) The Girl Has No Rights: Gender Based Violence Report. Available at: http://insights.careinternational.org.uk/media/k2/attachments/CARE_The_Girl_Has_No_Rights_GBV_in_South_Sudan.pdf (Accessed: 10 December 2016).
[9] Care International (2013) Gender in Brief. Available at: http://www.care.org/sites/default/files/documents/Gender%20in%20Brief%20South%20Sudan%20.pdf (Accessed: 10 December 2016).
[10] Chazan, N., Mortimer, R., Ravenhill, J. and Rothchild, D. (1992) Politics and society in contemporary Africa. 2nd edn. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers.
[11] Choudhury, C. (2014) ‘Beyond Culture: Human Rights Universalisms versus Religious and Cultural Relativism in the Activism for Gender Justice’, Berkeley Journal of Gender, Law, & Justice, (14), pp. 226–268.
[12] Collins, R.O. (1971) Land beyond the rivers; the southern Sudan, 1898-1918. New Haven: Yale University Press.
[13] Copnall, J. (2014) A poisonous thorn in our hearts: Sudan and South Sudan’s bitter and incomplete divorce. London: C Hurst & Co Publishers.
[14] Cornwall, A. and Molyneux, M. (2006) ‘The politics of Rights—Dilemmas for feminist Praxis: An introduction’, Third World Quarterly, 27(7), pp. 1175–1191. doi: 10.1080/01436590600933255.
[15] Donnelly, J. (1984) ‘Cultural relativism and universal human rights’, Human Rights Quarterly, 6(4), p. 400. doi: 10.2307/762182.
[16] Edward (2014) A Strategy for Achieving Gender Equality in South Sudan. Available at: https://www.suddinstitute.org/publications/show/a-strategy-for-achieving-gender-equality-in-south-sudan (Accessed: 11 October 2016).
[17] Embassy of the Republic of South Sudan in Washington DC, (2011). A Short History of South Sudan. Washington DC.
[18] Fortin, J. (2016) Is there any hope for peace in South Sudan? Available at: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/23/world/africa/south-sudan-kiir-machar-peace-civil-war.html?_r=0 (Accessed: 22 November 2016).
[19] Gender Concerns International (2011) Women in South Sudan. Available at:http://www.genderconcerns.org/images/gal/Women%20in%20South%20Sudan.pdf (Accessed: 22 September 2016).
[20] Government of the Republic of South Sudan (2012) South Sudan Development Plan. Available at: http://faolex.fao.org/docs/pdf/ssd149673.pdf (Accessed: 05 October 2016).
[21] Government of the Republic of South Sudan (2011) South Sudan Bill of Rights
[22] Grabska, K. (2013) ‘The return of displaced Nuer in southern Sudan: Women becoming men?’, Development and Change, 44(5), pp. 1135–1157. doi: 10.1111/dech.12051.
[23] Griffin, J. (2008) On human rights. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
[24] Hanzich, R. (2011) ‘Struggles in South Sudan’, World In Review, pp. 38–41.
[25] Herskovits, M.J. (1972) Cultural relativism - perspectives in cultural pluralism. New York, NY: Random House, Inc, New York, NY.
[26] Human Rights Watch (2015) World Report 2015: South Sudan. Available at: https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2015/country-chapters/south-sudan (Accessed: 22 September 2016).
[27] Human Rights Watch (2013) Child and Forced Marriage in South Sudan. Available at: https://www.hrw.org/report/2013/03/07/old-man-can-feed-us-you-will-marry-him/child-and-forced-marriage-south-sudan (Accessed: 26 September 2016).
[28] Human Security Baseline Assessment for Sudan and South Sudan (2011) Human Security Baseline Assessment. Available at: http://www.smallarmssurveysudan.org/facts-figures/overview.html (Accessed: 18 September 2016).
[29] Hunt, R.C. (2007) Beyond relativism: Comparability in cultural anthropology. United States: AltaMira Press,U.S.
[30] Hursh, J. (2012) ‘Advancing Women’s Rights Through Islamic Law: The Example of Morocco’, Berkeley Journal of Gender, Law, & Justice, 27(2), pp. 252–306.
[31] Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (2005) Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Available at: https://unmis.unmissions.org/Default.aspx?tabid=515 (Accessed: 11 December 2016).
[32] Ishay, M. (2004) ‘What are human rights? Six historical controversies’, Journal of Human Rights, 3(3), pp. 359–371. doi: 10.1080/1475483042000224897.
[33] Kabeer, N. and Khan, A. (2014) ‘Cultural values or universal rights? Women’s narratives of compliance and Contestation in urban Afghanistan’, Feminist Economics, 20(3), pp. 1–24. doi: 10.1080/13545701.2014.926558.
[34] Klineberg, O. (1972) ‘Cultural rights as human rights’, Leonardo, 5(1), p. 79. doi: 10.2307/1572481.
[35] Leonardi, C. (2013) Dealing with government in South Sudan: Histories of Chiefship, community and state. New York, NY, United States: Boydell & Brewer.
[36] Lund, C. (1998) ‘Development and rights: Tempering universalism and relativism’, The European Journal of Development Research, 10(2), pp. 1–6. doi: 10.1080/09578819808426712.
[37] Margalit, A. and Halbertal, M. (1994) ‘Liberalism and the right to culture’, Social Research, 61, pp. 491–510. doi: 10.2307/40971045.
[38] Mégret, Frederic (2010) International Human Rights Law Theory. Available at SSRN: http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1539591
[39] Ministry of Gender, Child, and Social Welfare (2012) South Sudan Comprehensive Country Gender Assessment. Available at: http://mgcswss.org/wp-content/uploads/Comprehensive-Country-Gender-Assessment-2012.pdf (Accessed: 03 October 2016).
[40] Ministry of Gender, Child, and Social Welfare (2012) South Sudan National Gender Policy.
[41] Ministry of Gender, Child, and Social Welfare (2013) Women’s Peace and Security Resolution 1325 in South Sudan Baseline Study.
[42] Ministry of Gender, Child, and Social Welfare (2014) National Evaluation on the Implementation of the Beijing Platform. Available at: http://mgcswss.org/wp-content/uploads/National-Evaluation-on-Implementation-of-the-Beijing-Platform.pdf (Accessed: 11 October 2016).
[43] Mutua, M. (2002) Human rights: A political and cultural critique. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.
[44] National Bureau of Statistics (2010) The Republic of South Sudan: The Sudan Household Health Survey 2010. Available at: http://www.southsudanembassydc.org/PDFs/others/SHHS%20II%20Report%20Final.pdf (Accessed: 12 October 2016).
[45] OHCHR (2016) Terrorized, killed, raped and starving: The fate of civilians in South Sudan’s continued civil war. Available at: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/SouthSudanReport.aspx (Accessed: 11 October 2016).
[46] Omer, R. (2016) ‘South Sudan: From Independence to a Detrimental Civil War’, Harvard International Review, 37(3), pp. 11–12.
[47] O’Reilly, M. (2014) With legal protection stalled, traditional chiefs key to preventing child marriage in South Sudan. Available at: https://theglobalobservatory.org/2014/08/traditional-chiefs-preventing-child-marriage-south-sudan/ (Accessed: 11 October 2016).
[48] Oxfam (2013) Country Profile: South Sudan. Available at: https://www.oxfam.ca/sites/default/files/imce/country-profile-south-sudan.pdf (Accessed: 10 October 2016).
[49] Rachels, J. (1934) The elements of moral philosophy. 2nd edn. New York: McGraw-Hill Inc.,US.
[50] Radon, J. and Logan, S. (2014) ‘South Sudan: Governance Arrangements, War, and Peace’, Journal of International Affairs, 68(1), pp. 149–167.
[51] Rolandsen, Ø.H. and Daly, M.W. (2016) A history of South Sudan: From slavery to independence. Cambridge University Press.
[52] Scott, J., Averbach, S., Modest, A., Hacker, M., Cornish, S., Spencer, D., Murphy, M. and Parmar, P. (2013) ‘An assessment of attitudes toward gender inequitable sexual and reproductive health norms in South Sudan: A community-based participatory research approach’, Conflict and Health, 7(1), p. 24. doi: 10.1186/1752-1505-7-24.
[53] Shapcott, R. (2010) International ethics. ; A critical introduction. Cambridge, UK: Polity Press.
[54] Southern Sudan Centre for Census, Statistics, and Evaluation (2009) Poverty in Southern Sudan. Available at: http://static1.1.sqspcdn.com/static/f/750842/10005391/1293722618113/Poverty_Southern_Sudan.pdf?token=7fIbi8bFX2B2LMv8AD2kzQKtAoQ%3D (Accessed: 25 September 2016).
[55] The Southern Sudan Centre for Census, Statistics, and Evaluation (2010) Key Indicators for Southern Sudan. Available at: http://www.ssnbs.org/key-indicators-for-southern-su/ (Accessed: 10 October 2016).
[56] Transitional Constitution of South Sudan, 2011. Government of South Sudan.
[57] UN MISS Security Council (2016) Security Council South Sudan Report. .
[58] UN Population Fund (2016) UNFP South Sudan. Available at: http://www.unfpa.org/transparency-portal/unfpa-south-sudan (Accessed: 11 November 2016).
[59] UN Women (2013) South Sudan: Strengthening women’s role in the new nation. Available at: http://www.unwomen.org/en/news/stories/2013/7/south-sudan-nationhood (Accessed: 11 October 2016).
[60] UNDP (2013) Gender Inequality Report.
[61] UNDP (2014) South Sudan Annual Report 2014. Available at: http://www.ss.undp.org/content/south_sudan/en/home/library.html (Accessed: 09 October 2016).
[62] UNESCO (2016) Culture and Human Rights. Available at: http://www.unesco.org/new/en/culture/themes/culture-and-development/the-future-we-want-the-role-of-culture/culture-and-human-rights/ (Accessed: 13 October 2016).
[63] United Nations (1945) United Nations Charter
[64] United Nations Office of Sexual Violence in Conflict (2015) Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Sexual Violence in Conflict in South Sudan. Available at: http://www.un.org/sexualviolenceinconflict/countries/south-sudan/ (Accessed: 12 October 2016).
[65] World Bank (2016) South Sudan Data. Available at: http://data.worldbank.org/country/south-sudan (Accessed: 10 December 2016).
[66] Yupsanis, A., (2008) The concept and categories of cultural rights in international law-their broad sense and the relevant clauses of the international human rights treaties. Syracuse Journal of International Law and Commerce.
Vol:12 No:06 2018Vol:12 No:05 2018Vol:12 No:04 2018Vol:12 No:03 2018Vol:12 No:02 2018Vol:12 No:01 2018
Vol:11 No:12 2017Vol:11 No:11 2017Vol:11 No:10 2017Vol:11 No:09 2017Vol:11 No:08 2017Vol:11 No:07 2017Vol:11 No:06 2017Vol:11 No:05 2017Vol:11 No:04 2017Vol:11 No:03 2017Vol:11 No:02 2017Vol:11 No:01 2017
Vol:10 No:12 2016Vol:10 No:11 2016Vol:10 No:10 2016Vol:10 No:09 2016Vol:10 No:08 2016Vol:10 No:07 2016Vol:10 No:06 2016Vol:10 No:05 2016Vol:10 No:04 2016Vol:10 No:03 2016Vol:10 No:02 2016Vol:10 No:01 2016
Vol:9 No:12 2015Vol:9 No:11 2015Vol:9 No:10 2015Vol:9 No:09 2015Vol:9 No:08 2015Vol:9 No:07 2015Vol:9 No:06 2015Vol:9 No:05 2015Vol:9 No:04 2015Vol:9 No:03 2015Vol:9 No:02 2015Vol:9 No:01 2015
Vol:8 No:12 2014Vol:8 No:11 2014Vol:8 No:10 2014Vol:8 No:09 2014Vol:8 No:08 2014Vol:8 No:07 2014Vol:8 No:06 2014Vol:8 No:05 2014Vol:8 No:04 2014Vol:8 No:03 2014Vol:8 No:02 2014Vol:8 No:01 2014
Vol:7 No:12 2013Vol:7 No:11 2013Vol:7 No:10 2013Vol:7 No:09 2013Vol:7 No:08 2013Vol:7 No:07 2013Vol:7 No:06 2013Vol:7 No:05 2013Vol:7 No:04 2013Vol:7 No:03 2013Vol:7 No:02 2013Vol:7 No:01 2013
Vol:6 No:12 2012Vol:6 No:11 2012Vol:6 No:10 2012Vol:6 No:09 2012Vol:6 No:08 2012Vol:6 No:07 2012Vol:6 No:06 2012Vol:6 No:05 2012Vol:6 No:04 2012Vol:6 No:03 2012Vol:6 No:02 2012Vol:6 No:01 2012
Vol:5 No:12 2011Vol:5 No:11 2011Vol:5 No:10 2011Vol:5 No:09 2011Vol:5 No:08 2011Vol:5 No:07 2011Vol:5 No:06 2011Vol:5 No:05 2011Vol:5 No:04 2011Vol:5 No:03 2011Vol:5 No:02 2011Vol:5 No:01 2011
Vol:4 No:12 2010Vol:4 No:11 2010Vol:4 No:10 2010Vol:4 No:09 2010Vol:4 No:08 2010Vol:4 No:07 2010Vol:4 No:06 2010Vol:4 No:05 2010Vol:4 No:04 2010Vol:4 No:03 2010Vol:4 No:02 2010Vol:4 No:01 2010
Vol:3 No:12 2009Vol:3 No:11 2009Vol:3 No:10 2009Vol:3 No:09 2009Vol:3 No:08 2009Vol:3 No:07 2009Vol:3 No:06 2009Vol:3 No:05 2009Vol:3 No:04 2009Vol:3 No:03 2009Vol:3 No:02 2009Vol:3 No:01 2009
Vol:2 No:12 2008Vol:2 No:11 2008Vol:2 No:10 2008Vol:2 No:09 2008Vol:2 No:08 2008Vol:2 No:07 2008Vol:2 No:06 2008Vol:2 No:05 2008Vol:2 No:04 2008Vol:2 No:03 2008Vol:2 No:02 2008Vol:2 No:01 2008
Vol:1 No:12 2007Vol:1 No:11 2007Vol:1 No:10 2007Vol:1 No:09 2007Vol:1 No:08 2007Vol:1 No:07 2007Vol:1 No:06 2007Vol:1 No:05 2007Vol:1 No:04 2007Vol:1 No:03 2007Vol:1 No:02 2007Vol:1 No:01 2007