Mapping Gender Norms In Social Media In South Africa

Preliminary findings of social media discourse evaluation performed by the heCareZa challenge have linked discriminatory gender norms in South African society to an overemphasis on the function of the male “financial provider”. These findings are the results of an intensive evaluation of gendered conversations South Africans have had on social media channels over the interval 2020-21.

The heCareZa challenge, supported by Innovation Edge, goals to achieve an intensive understanding of gender discrimination, gender-based violence (GBV) and paternity in South Africa. The finish objective is to tell focused GBV interventions and contribute to wider information round this ubiquitous downside.

“Cycles of GBV violence are perpetuated by unequal gender norms and reinforced by the attitudes and behaviors an individual learns in childhood,” stated Jenna-Lee Strugnell, challenge supervisor for heCareZa.

“Our ultimate goal is to challenge attitudes and behaviors by engaging citizens as change agents. We will support change agents to contribute online and offline gender dialogue with positive messages around preferred attitudes and behaviors, as well as possible solutions to violence.”

“These preliminary findings, along with further online research we will conduct throughout the rest of the year, will inform the positive messages,” Strugnell added.

The social media discourse evaluation, performed by heCareZa, used key phrase evaluation and recognized three predominant themes in gender-focused conversations. All three themes positioned males in modern South Africa ready of monetary companies, which is difficult for a lot of given the excessive unemployment and financial fallout of Covid-19.

Theme 1: Lobola in modern South Africa

Stories surrounding Lobola mentioned the worth of lobola in uniting prolonged households and affirming the intention for a long-term marriage bond, the emancipation of girls from patriarchal societal norms after they select to help their husband-to-be with lobola fee, in addition to hyperlinks between intimate companion violence and lobola.

Theme 2: Girlfriend allowance

The findings revealed a number of accounts of monetary exchanges between a person and his intimate companion with out marriage. This is also called girlfriend profit, blessing and sugar daddies/infants. These discussions revealed each the management males can have over the ladies they assist, and the frustration and failure of males who can not “afford” to pay girlfriends.

Theme 3: ATM (Automated Teller Machine) daddy

An ATM father is somebody who contributes financially to their kid’s life, however could also be bodily and emotionally absent. Meanwhile, males who do not need the means to contribute financially could also be denied entry to their little one, which might generate emotions of anger, failure and frustration within the man.

“GBV thrives in silence and social media can play an important role in exposing the severity of GBV,” stated Strugnell.

“As we continue to analyze social media discourse, we will identify men who oppose GBV, recruit them as allies, train them in facilitating dialogues and support them to create safe spaces where men can come together to share their experiences and to develop solutions to address the critical problem of GBV in South Africa.”

The preliminary findings and evaluation of the heCareZA research have been revealed by theUniversity for Peaceof their guide Mapping Online Gender-based Violence. Click right here to obtain the chapter.


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