African Women, the Vision of Equality and the Quest for Empowerment: Addressing Inequalities at the Heart of the Post-2015 Development Agenda and the Future


The history of women has been defined by a world enmeshed in woes, frustration, oppression, maltreatment and inequalities. Feminism as a philosophy of change sought to fight, end and change this woeful scenario of women that denied their self respect, dignity and led to a loss of self confidence. Fundamentally, feminist philosophy sought for explanations and justifications why women were denied a voice and why they were historically not treated as coequals of men. The basis of inequality is historically rooted in cultural and philosophical falsities that were not evidenced based but were used to justify oppression against women. The Universal Declaration of human rights gave women and the world the platform that empowered them with rights and led to fresh processes that sought to end oppression and their underdevelopment inspired by inequality, iniquities, denial of opportunities for growth and empowerment. The millennium development goal of ending inequality and oppression against women should achieve equality and women’s empowerment in Africa. Since the declaration of the MDGS, considerable gains had been made inAfricabut challenges and problems are still identified in the areas of cultural inequality complicated by the weakness of the major governance institutions and corruption. Other challenges centre on women’s lack of genuine empowerment, violence against women, trafficking in women, denial of human rights, lack of participation in policy and governance. Since empowerment is the key to achieving mainstreaming and gender equality, this paper seeks to redefine the concept of empowering women as the platform to ending inequality, social injustice and achieving equality in the context of the unique challenges of underdevelopment facingAfrica. It will identify the policy implications of establishing empowerment structures that address multiple challenges facing gender inequality and how these structures will assist in building the necessary feminine human resources that will make women as partners of sustainable growth and development after 2015.

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Casimir, A. , Emmanuel, O. and Okpara, M. (2013) African Women, the Vision of Equality and the Quest for Empowerment: Addressing Inequalities at the Heart of the Post-2015 Development Agenda and the Future. Open Journal of Philosophy, 3, 466-474. doi: 10.4236/ojpp.2013.34068.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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