Outline your understanding of the concept of discrimination, analyses the discrimination faced by Individuals and groups In Afghanistan society and then assess ways of reducing that discrimination. In your answer, refer to Gender discrimination in Afghanistan. Discrimination is the common occurrence of negativity towards a particular group or individual, based on their ethnically background, racial beliefs, appearance, or even the anticipated perception of these. One of the most common forms of discrimination is gender inequality, and this occurs very frequently in third world, or developing countries, such as Afghanistan.
Throughout Afghanistan's history, the country has experienced tribal and political divisions and instability from conflict, thus a social tradition of inequality towards women has formed. This Is emphasized through employment and wages, education, health care and power and authority. The continuous oppression of women has been denoted as part of Afghanistan's culture, and therefore the progress of decreasing gender discrimination In the country, regardless of the efforts made by Afghans women, does not appear to be Improving with any major significance.
Discrimination s also a feature of the Australian society, and although it is all around us, it is easy to be dismissive or naive to the fact that almost everyone is effected by discrimination in some way. Although discrimination can be more subtle in our society than in Afghanistan, there are still elements of racial, religious or gender Inequality all throughout Australia's history.
Through a content analysis conducted of the Sydney Morning Herald Newspaper of the 24th of Marc...
h 2014, I discovered that the total number of articles relating to Discrimination and Inequality was only 4. 3% of the Newspapers total content. From the results of this primary research It can be concluded that the total media coverage of adulterations Issues are not considered as important as the total percentage of popular culture articles, such as sport and entertainment. Some of the discrimination issues covered in the Sydney Morning Herald Include the articles 'Poor left further behind.
' And 'Defense a better place for women, but still a work In progress. '- these articles are prime examples of discrimination experienced in Australian society.
I have personally witnessed a form of discrimination while being in the work force. The restaurant I was working at had a mix of multi-cultural kitchen hands, and the abusive boss constantly threw racist slurs at the Lebanese and Iraqi men.
This had quite a strong Impact on me. As I later discovered that not only were those men (10-20 years older than me) working under constant discrimination due to their ethnic backgrounds, they were also being paved lower wages than myself. Unfortunately, racial discrimination like this is very common In the Australian work force, and this was identified In a focus group I helped conduct. On the topic of discrimination, the focus group participates identified the issues of racial, religious and gender inequality, and stated that they believe these issues will always be present in Australia as "Australia is such a multicultural society, racial difference is constantly surrounding us".
This applies to the other forms of discrimination, as one participant asked the question "We stil
seem to notice cultural difference, therefore have we quite reached this acceptance? " 1 OFF say they are comfortable and excepting of religious and racial differences, however that person may still demonstrate discrimination against a person or group without even meaning to. Regardless of the negative connotations about discrimination, the general consensus from the focus group was that racial discrimination will improve over time, as people are starting to realism that we are all equal.
This was suggested to be due to the rising awareness through education. Women in Afghanistan have been faced with constant pressure from men in their society.
As men are the more powerful gender in Afghans culture, contemporaries have criticizes that this is Just their culture and we cannot label it as gender discrimination. However, women have been faced with constant oppression regarding education, the workforce, and religion. In terms of wages, Afghans women generally make 50% and lower of the wages given to men for doing the same Jobs.
This includes: planting (51 making handicrafts (41 and work on farms (50%). Thus 2/3 of the Afghans people are living on less than $2 American Dollars per day.
The high number of Afghans women whom are being paved lower wages than men (for doing the same Job) could be based on the very little accessibility to education. As Afghanistan has a struggling economy overwhelmed with mass unemployment ND poverty, women often cannot find work where they receive sufficient pay.
This is a very common form of oppression for Afghans women. In education, 90% of young boys who start elementary school complete grade 6, however Just over half of the girls who start, finish grade 6. The main factors for this are a lack of transport to and from school, poverty and child marriage.
During the early 20th Century, education was extremely hard for women due to the low number of female schools. However women were given more opportunities with help such as the Kabul University which opened to girls in 1947.
Unfortunately in the post-civil war period, Afghanistan was taken over by the extremist-Islam group The Taliban, and women were stripped of these opportunities and sent back to lives where they were to stay at home and be controlled by their husbands and fathers. Thus Additional gender discrimination was facilitated from the lack of education women were offered. As power and authority in Afghanistan has developed from military power to legitimate power through the establishment of a democratic Government, the battle for more involvement from women has started to make some progress.
As 28% of delegates from the Government are women, this makes Afghanistan on of the leading countries in terms of representatives. Regardless of this, men hold the majority of Government power due to the set back of cultural norms, gender roles and expectations. Although there are these strongly influential setbacks to the progress of decreasing gender discrimination, efforts are currently being undertaken to ensure a change in the oppression of women.
One example is the Afghanistan Compact (drafted in 2006), which is fully supported by the United Nations, the UK an Afghanistan.
argues for- greater security, the safe and systematic removal of land mines, the development of a consistently fair and honest democratic government and reducing gender inequalities- the Afghanistan Compact hopes to achieve a more balanced society for the Afghanistan people, and with additional help from the United Nations, An element of hope for the oppression on women may also come from Globalization.
With the notion of globalization comes increased exposure to western ideas of freedom and safety, clothing and the media. It is hoped that this influence may help evolve gender roles from what they are today. This would also contribute to more access to education via transportation, higher wages and more religious and social freedom, thus contributing to the efforts of decreasing the oppression of Afghans women. There are multiple reasons for the development of gender inequality within Afghans society, a major one being the Islamic religion.
Extremist groups from this popular religion, which is followed by both genders, such as the Taliban have attracted much attention from the media and international community.
This is due to the extreme beliefs and actions of said groups. The Islamic bible (the Curran) inspires many interpretations and controversies, as one Muslim women states "It is an unfortunate reality that the Curran has frequently been used to Justify the social status quo and gender inequality'.
This reinforces the common misuse of religion to enforce gender imbalance and superiority over women- one of the most famous symbols of this is the Burk. The long cloth which covers the majority of the female body (with tiny holes for sight and breathing) has been criticizes for it dehumidifying effect, but as a part of Afghans culture which has been around for centuries, there has been no rush from the women to remove it. This has been considered to be due to fear of males and the Taliban, or due to heavily enforced expectations from the culture of Afghans society.
It was pointed out by an Afghans women, that ".
.. Ironically the Burk became a means to move unnoticed and to TA part more activity in social life than most people would imagine". This being said, there are differences present in the sects of Islam religion, including the Sunnis Muslims and the Shiite Muslims, allowing for differing opinions on the Burk and its oppression for women. As religion, and particularly the Islamic religion, is highly influential on the religiously active society of
Afghanistan, the habit of wearing a Burk along with the safety of being completely hidden appeals to many Afghans women, and therefore may stand in the way of progress and the future of gender equality. As Afghanistan fights towards a more equal future for women regarding education, the work force and freedom within religion, it is important to stay informed on this topic in order to stay socially and culturally literate.
However, this may prove a task as the local and international newspapers inside Australia have an extremely low count for informative articles based on discrimination and inequality.
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