African states continue to undergo change and upheaval.  While some struggle with authoritarian and military regimes, almost all, whether multi-party democracies or dictatorships, whether "free market" or socialist, have experienced what Mikell (1997) refers to as "the failure of male-dominated" politics.

Professor and director of Institute of African studies, University of Ghana, Akosua Adomako Ampofo claims that African countries have suffered the imposition of Western-designed, neo-liberal structural reforms and the economic dependence of our states has encouraged them to neglect the needs of women who are invariably perceived as having an inelastic supply of emotional and physical energy to deal with the increasing demands placed on them. Thus, in response to these challenges, for feminists on the continent, activism is rarely a choice - we are not able to restrict our theorizing to classrooms or the pages of books.

In this presentation Adomako will indicate some of the ways women, in Africa, have contributed to putting gender analyses on the table, both inside and outside the academy, while also seeking to undo, or at least ease, the burdens of gender that women bear.

Contact: Dr. Asuncion Lera St. Clair