Editorial Chief: Jemimah M. Njuki, Africa Centre for Gender, Social Research and Impact Assessment

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Vol 2, Issue 2, pp 33-51, 2017

Gender, land and responses to health and environmental shocks in rural South Western Uganda

Author: Rwamahe Rutakumwa1, Adam Pain2 , Dominic Bukenya1 , Grace Tumwekwase1 , Fatuma Ssembajja1 and Janet Seeley1,3*
1MRC/UVRI Uganda Research Unit on AIDS, P.O. Box 49, Entebbe, Uganda
2Department of Urban and Rural Development, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden
3London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, 15-17 Tavistock Place, London, UK
*Corresponding author: Janet.seeley@mrcuganda.org or janet.seeley@lshtm.ac.uk


We examine the gendered responses to shocks – including HIV-related illness and death, and environmental factors such as drought or too much rain – and how women in south western Uganda navigate structural barriers such as the gender constraints in land ownership, to cope with the impact of shocks. The study is based on data drawn from households selected from a General Population Cohort of 20,000 people in Kalungu District. As part of a larger study investigating the impact of HIV on agricultural livelihoods, 22 households were purposively sampled for a qualitative study. These households were stratified by sex of household head and by a death having occurred/not occurred of an HIV-positive individual in the household. Our findings show the gendered dimensions in household responses to crises are shaped by women and men’s position in the social structure in general and within their families and households. Women can make effective use of their social relations to obtain material support and information to improve their family’s livelihood.

Keywords: Agriculture, livelihoods, land, shocks, HIV, patriarchy, intersectionality, Uganda, Africa

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DOI: 10.19268/JGAFS.222017.3
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