The issue of women in the society is very crucial with women being highly undermined. Their subordinate position in the current world has been strained with women being separated in all life aspects. The idea of low- grading women noticeably denies them their self-esteem and moral value. Women in the society are so far victims of prejudice and discrimination. These can be attributed to the large diversity amongst women in terms of class, traditions, sexual orientation and era.
This paper will discuss three social issues affecting women with consideration based on political representation, family stability/ disintegration and poverty feminization. Based on the three social issues, this paper will discuss on how each affects women, whether it’s possible to find a solution to this social issues and who is held responsible for this. Consequently, the paper will look at what types of strategies are being adopted by nations to curb these issues.
Feminization of Poverty
This is a social issue concerning women. It illustrates an occurrence in which women represent unbalanced proportions of worlds poverty. It is the burden of neediness borne by the feminine gender. The term poverty feminization has three different meanings. This include the fact that women have greater frequencies of poverty than men, that poverty in women is more serious than in men and that there is a bigger tendency of poverty amongst women, particularly linked to increasing rates of female- head households.
The concept of poverty feminization is simply not as a result of lack of income alone. It could be attributed to other factors such as dispossession of capacities and gender prejudices present in societies. The rising share of poverty in women is associated with the increasing occurrences of lone mother family units and the increasing level of female involvement in low revenue urban sector jobs.
Poverty feminization is a major social issue among nations due to the increasing number of the feminine gender amongst the poverty -stricken citizens and high number of female headed families amongst the poor families.
The most critical factor leading to poverty feminization is an increase in the number of single- mother households in the present world. These households are at the utmost danger of poverty due to lack of a source of earning and capital.
Research has shown that families led by females have an income of nearly half that of male led households. Single mothers are the most poverty stricken people in society and their offsprings tend to be unfortunate in comparison to their colleagues. Other factors leading to poverty feminization include an increase of male migrant workers, sicknesses and demise of husbands.
Single- mother households are, therefore, directly linked to issue of gender inequality as women are more vulnerable to poverty and run short of necessary life needs in contrast to men. Nations with clear gender distinctions and social classes restrict women access to primary education. In such nations, female education is frequently forgone to allow the male children to attend school (Nolan & Watson, 1999).
To help curb the problem of poverty, factors that lead to the increasing cases of poverty feminization should be dealt with. Since poor health is a major factor in family poverty, improvements in health services are being executed to alleviate feminization of poverty. Women education can generate greater chances for women to raise themselves from poverty and improve their social status.
Attention to the issue of poverty feminization needs to be focused not only on the degree of women’s poverty but also to the increased obligation of having small social liberties, or little access to resources.
Women living in poverty have minimal access to health care hence are at a very high menace of poor health. For instance, in southern India, females living in poverty are particularly more susceptible to sexual harassment and HIV/AIDS risks. Hardships associated with female headed households can be counterbalanced by decreasing the numbers of such households. Exceptional measures for the appointment of women candidates should be implemented.
Women and Political Representation
Women’s minimal involvement at the highest levels of political affairs is a long- term issue in sex stratification. International literature argues that women representation in politics is very low. It is a usual observation that political agents in most nations are obtained from the elite section of the society. Even where political participants are chosen through just and independent elections, it is frequently noted that legislative bodies remain unrepresentative. Specifically, these bodies are under representative of women.
Preceding research across nations has emphasized on three justifications for the discrepancy in women’s political participation. These include social structure, state affairs and beliefs. It has, however, been shown that gender beliefs powerfully affect women number in nationwide legislatures.
It is also theorized that the participation of women in politics relies on the capacity of the government to provide incentives for women promotion. It is necessary that all genders be well represented in the parliament, so that all their feelings and concerns may be better recognized and addressed.
To curb the problem of gender inequality in political representations, electoral sex quotas are today being established in a great number of nations globally. More than 30 nations have developed quotas for appointment into national parliament. Public election quotas are now laid down in key political parties, requiring that a particular number of the contestants must be women.
Modernism in a nation’s political organization is demonstrated with nations being promoted to increase the number of women in their legislatures. Enhancement of women representation in politics can be achieved by putting into consideration institutional, socioeconomic and cultural factors (Duski, 2005).
Women and family Stability/Disintegration
The role of women in family stability and disintegration is another social issue affecting women in society. Every family should have a leader. The stream of leadership moves from a supernatural being, God, to the man, his wife and eventually to their offspring’s. Improper application of leadership can spoil the loveliness of the home life resulting to family unsteadiness and disintegration.
Since family headship entails the practice of influence by one person on others, the value of leadership displayed by the family head is a significant determinant of the stability of women. However, men have lost their marital harmony and mental stability in the present families. These families are deteriorating and breaking down.
Women have been so far considered as the domestic managers and are usually kept under the guidance of the family head. Women are considered as the core managers of stability and security in the family. They have been associated with family disintegration. Their absence and lack of concentration on their families affect the stability of the family.
It has been argued that psychological security and character development among children is the role of mother and father. However, due to modernization, this significant, major role has been left to women and their failure to perform this role properly leads to family disintegration.
The present society also assumes that it is the role of women to generate and make their children strong spiritually. Women are also supposed to teach their children with respect to their social norms and value practices. They are held responsible for family stability. They are expected to direct and offer services for the satisfaction of the physical wants of the family members.
This includes food, provision of clothing and controlling all the home affairs. The woman by fulfilling her husband’s sexual wants brings in family stability. If women ignore their role of staying at home and directing all the interior issues of the family such as children upbringing, then this leads to family disintegration.
It is, therefore, clear that women are the major causes of family disintegrations and instability and that the roles assigned to them are as a result of gender inequality. Measures should be put in place that encourages men to participate in ensuring that their families are stable (Sweetman, 1996).
The research project above was about women and the social issues affecting them in the society. The social issues considered in this project include political representation, family stability/ disintegration and poverty feminization. This paper has discussed on how each of these issues affects women and the strategies adopted by nations to curb these issues. Findings of this research show that women are highly undermined in the current social society.
Research should, therefore, be done to provide an explanation for the reasons contributing to the differences in the role of women across countries. The custom of gender inequality should be broken, and women should be encouraged to work together with men and not separately.
Duski, J. L. (2005). State feminism and political representation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Nolan, B. & Watson, D. (1999) Women and poverty in Ireland. Dublin: Oak Tree Press in association with Combat Poverty Agency.
Sweetman, C. (1996). Women and the family. Cambridge, MA: Oxfam.