Wendy Simonds examines what the phenomenon of self-help reading reveals about gender relations in contemporary American culture. She interviews women readers and editors of self-help books, and looks at bestsellers since 1963--those offering advice about managing relationships, enhancing sexuality, developing self-esteem, becoming assertive, and improving spiritual life--including Betty Friedan's The Feminine Mystique, Robin Norwood's Women Who Love Too Much, Robert Bly's Iron John, and Alex Comfort's The Joy of Sex. She argues that the genre's continued success is indicative of readers' search for meaning. Drawing on feminist theory and critical cultural studies, Simonds explores the appeal of self-help books, and asks what readers are making of them. She looks at how these books affect the social construction, cultural consumption, and transmission of ideas about gender and the self. She includes discussions of readers' assessments of the meaning and effectiveness of self-help reading; the interaction between religious and therapeutic ideology in the activity of reading this genre; and creators'--both authors' and editors'--views of their work. Are self-help books politically conservative or liberating, feminist or anti-feminist? Simonds finds that the genre tends to recommend individual change, not social change; yet it can also validate caring and can encourage a sense of community among women. In the end, though, these books provide "only an illusory cure for what ails us, collectively, as a culture."
Advancement and empowerment of women has been a leading objective of state policy ever since the attainment of Independence in 1947. Institutions of different types -- Central, State and Local Governments, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), civil society and other bodies -- are active to ensure gender equality as laid down in the Constitution of India. The underway Eleventh Five Year Plan (2007-12) of India recognizes women, for the first time, not just as equal citizens but as agents of economic and social growth. The Plan's approach to gender equity is based on the recognition that interventions in favour of women must be multi-pronged and that they must be provided with basic entitlements. Self-help Groups (SHGs) have emerged as an effective instrument to promote entrepreneurship and self-confidence among women, particularly in rural areas. The Self-help Group (SHG)-Bank Linkage Programme, since 1992 has become a well-known tool for bankers, developmental agencies and even for corporate houses. This book provides a vivid account of the various measures taken by the Government of India for the economic, social and political empowerment of women. More importantly, it examines the role of SHGs in women's development, thereby envisaging a synthesis of formal financial system and informal sector.
The book is an in-depth study of Empowerment of Women Through Self Help Groups. It covers the problems and perspectives of Self Help Groups and suggest several measures. The study has evaluated the implementation of several schemes in Anantapur District in particular and in Andhra Pradesh in general such as rearing goats, dairying, petty business activities, making of soft toys and so on. The findings are very much encouraging, such as Women are now managing their families, Panchayat Raj Institutions, are able to concentrate on their children s education and health. Contents include: Introduction, Public Policy Theoretical Perspectives, Evaluation, Aims and Objectctives of Self Help Groups in Anantapur District, Socio-Economic Background of the Sample Study, Problems and perspectives of Self Help Groups, Performance of Self Help Groups and Conclusion. This outstanding Text-cum-Reference book will be of great use to Scholars, Administrators, Planners, Policy-makers, Statesmen and Students of Political Science, Economics, Sociology, Commerce and Women Studites.
All over the world there is a realization that the best way to tackle poverty and enable the community to improve its quality of life is through social mobilization of poor, especially women into Self Help Groups. Ever since Independence a number of innovative schemes have been launched for the upliftment of women in our country. Indian Government has taken lot of initiatives to strengthen the institutional rural credit system and development programmes. Viewing it in the welfare programmes of Ninth Five Year Plan (1997-2002) and shifting the concept of Development to Empowerment. The Indian Government adopted the approach of Self Help Groups (SHGs) to uplift the rural women. The empowerment of women through Self Help Groups (SHGs) would lead to benefits not only to the individual woman and women groups but also the families and community as a whole through collective action for development. The book will be highly useful to students of social studies especially Women Studies, Social Work, Sociology, Economics and also to the students and research scholars specialising in Human Development and NGO s and also other functionaries dealing with women.
Rebuilding Elder Networks Through Personal Empowerment
Author: Lenard W. Kaye
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Category: Social Science
This collection of essays and reviews represents the most significant and comprehensive writing on Shakespeare's A Comedy of Errors. Miola's edited work also features a comprehensive critical history, coupled with a full bibliography and photographs of major productions of the play from around the world. In the collection, there are five previously unpublished essays. The topics covered in these new essays are women in the play, the play's debt to contemporary theater, its critical and performance histories in Germany and Japan, the metrical variety of the play, and the distinctly modern perspective on the play as containing dark and disturbing elements. To compliment these new essays, the collection features significant scholarship and commentary on The Comedy of Errors that is published in obscure and difficulty accessible journals, newspapers, and other sources. This collection brings together these essays for the first time.
Women population constitutes nearly 49% of the total population of India. Empowerment of rural woman is necessary for the development of each and every society & country. Author has focused on ‘Self Help Group and Comprehensive Empowerment of Women in Rural Area, because it is very significant for development of women in rural area. Present subject is related to commerce, Economic, Sociology, Human Science, Human Rights, and Social Welfare also. Present book is useful to study the Empowerment of women and performance of SHGs in Maharashtra and all over country. Women are indivisible or integral part of society. Without women society is incomplete. Investigation of working process of SHGs is useful to Government Implementing agencies /Institutions and member of Self Help Groups in deciding their policy and implementing it for Socio Economic development. This book is designed to Provide guidance to the student, research scholars, social workers, women and government at large. It is the humble desire of the author that the students, researchers, women and social workers will make it convenient to study this boon on empowerment of rural women. The book has been designed with a multidimensional approach towards the significance, implementation procedure, drawbacks, socio-economic analysis and ways for improving SHGs Schemes of the Government. The book consists valuable data collected from various agencies implementing the schemes of the Government. Various statistical methods have been used to reach the result. So, the book will be useful & helpful to all the relevant people working on rural development, socio-economic planning &development.
The self-help groups are practical alternatives to achieve the aims of rural development and to get community involvement in all the rural development programmers. SHG is an organizational setup to disburse micro-finance to the women for the purpose of making them creative women and encouraging them to enter into commercial activities. The work of women should not be restricted to kitchen room only. Now she is coming out from kitchen and showing her ability in each and every sector of economy. She finds pleasure in independent living and also she is enjoying economic independence. Spread of education and faster growth in mass media has awakened the women to get equal justice in society like men. SHGs are intermediates for routing a broad range of government-sponsored development policies and schemes. NGOs and Government have increasingly been adopting SHGs as a strategy to bring women together for their development. This book is based on the minor research project carried out in Chandrapur District. Sample of the study was women self-help groups and the SHG members in Six Talukas of Chandrapur District. 300 SHGs and 200 SHG respondents are evaluated from this study. Monetary and Social evaluation of the women SHGs was the primary objective of the study. This Book is based on economic and social status of women in rural area therefore it is useful for the students of social science, economics, rural development and also useful for social workers and NGOs Prof. Akash Shriram Meshram
Theories on the eradication of poverty abound. Self-help, self-reliance and self-sufficiency are touted as solutions, and are indeed critical to an economically stable life. Yet, for economically disadvantaged women (America’s poorest citizens), self-help is not as simple as grabbing sturdy boot straps or climbing elusive ladders. Creative ideas for self-sufficiency do not flower and flourish in environments that are void of resources. This book, first published in 1995, examines the questions raised around the concept of self-help by introducing microenterprise and exploring its relevance to poor women.
Microfinance, as a concept, involves providing financial services, particularly small credit, fund transfer, and insurance to the unemployed, low-income group, and those who do not have easy access to the banking system. It has emerged as an active agent of financial inclusion, ensuring economic, and social upliftment of the unprivileged. Microfinance is being operated through two channels Self-help Group-Bank Linkage Programme (SBLP) and Micro-finance Institutions (MFIs). The special characteristic of SBLP is its direct connection with the clients at the grass-root level and working towards poverty reduction by providing financial support. The paper is based on a field study on SBLP undertaken for women in the Varanasi District of Uttar Pradesh, India. The increase in women’s participation in economic activities and decision-making reveals that SHGs have made an impact. SHGs have also helped them to create a common platform to participate, discuss, and find a solution of their problems. Women’s income and occupation structure under SHGs have also influenced the standard of living and empowerment level significantly.
Governments and development organizations worldwide are considering group-based platforms as alternatives to government- or market-based approaches for service delivery. This paper analyses the correlates of women’s membership in self-help groups (SHGs) using two datasets from India. Older women and those in villages without banks are more likely to join SHGs. Different findings across the two datasets highlight the drawbacks of using program evaluation data for guiding geographic targeting and placement of SHG programs. Our results emphasize the need to understand regional variations in membership and the unique characteristics of women, households, and villages when designing and targeting SHG platforms, particularly when using them for service delivery.
This research was undertaken as part of the Women Improving Nutrition through Group-based Strategies (WINGS) study, and was aimed at understanding ways to improve agricultural practices among women farmers in India. Effective agricultural extension is key to improving productivity, increasing farmers’ access to information, and promoting more diverse sets of crops and improved methods of cultivation. In India, however, the coverage of agricultural extension workers and the relevance of extension advice is poor. We investigate whether a women’s self-help group platform could be an effective way of improving access to information, women’s empowerment in agriculture, agricultural practices, and production diversity. We use cross-sectional data on close to 1000 women from 5 states in India, and employ nearest-neighbor matching models to match self-help group (SHG) and non-SHG women along a range of observed characteristics. We find that participation in an SHG increases women’s access to information and their participation in some agricultural decisions, but has limited impact on agricultural practices or outcomes, possibly due to financial constraints, social norms, and women’s domestic responsibilities. SHGs need to go beyond provision of information to changing the dynamics around women’s participation in agriculture to effectively translate knowledge into practice.
Women’s self-help groups (SHGs) have increasingly been used as a vehicle for social, political, and economic empowerment as well as a platform for service delivery. Although a growing body of literature shows evidence of positive impacts of SHGs on various measures of empowerment, our understanding of ways in which SHGs improve awareness and use of public services is limited. To fill this knowledge gap, this paper first examines how SHG membership is associated with political participation, awareness, and use of government entitlement schemes. It further examines the effect of SHG membership on various measures of social networks and mobility. Using data collected in 2015 across five Indian states and matching methods to correct for endogeneity of SHG membership, we find that SHG members are more politically engaged. We also find that SHG members are not only more likely to know of certain public entitlements than non-members, they are significantly more likely to avail of a greater number of public entitlement schemes. Additionally, SHG members have wider social networks and greater mobility as compared to non-members. Our results suggest that SHGs have the potential to increase their members’ ability to hold public entities accountable and demand what is rightfully theirs. An important insight, however, is that the SHGs themselves cannot be expected to increase knowledge of public entitlement schemes in absence of a deliberate effort to do so by an external agency.
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Although self-help has been an integral strategy of the women's movement, the burgeoning self-help publishing industry and growing popularity of talk shows encouraging personal confession have provoked vicious attacks on self-help from many feminists. Rock-a-By Baby examines the postpartum depression support group movement and exploring the relationship between gender, the ideas and strategies of women's self-help groups and feminism. Taylor uses interviews and personal letters, talk show transcripts, organizational newsletters and a survey of postpartum group leaders to illuminate conflicts played out in the arena of women's self-help.