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08 December 2011

Gender and the Media in Africa (1-3 Nov 2011) - CODESRIA

Gender and the Media in Africa
CODESRIA
1-3 November 2011, Cairo, Egypt
In line with its mandate to promote high-level scientific and academic debates on various aspects of socioeconomic development in Africa, the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA) hereby announces the 2011 edition of its Gender Symposium which will be held from 1st to 3rd November, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. The Gender Symposium is a forum organized annually by CODESRIA to discuss gender issues in Africa, and the theme of this year’s edition is Gender and the Media in Africa.


The objective of the 2011 Gender Symposium is therefore to renew the reflection and interrogation on the media, using the gender paradigm. Do the media contribute to the deconstruction of gender inequality relations, or do they only reproduce stereotypical images of masculinity and femininity that leave intact the power relations between men and women? What and how do they contribute to the building of the civic capacities of women and the construction of their leadership? Are they incorporating the gender dimension or just following the existing dominant ideology which plays down on the visibility of women? Are the alternative media (community radio, private radio and television stations, etc.) more sensitive to gender issues than the state-controlled media? Do the Web, the blogosphere, social networks (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) offer new spaces for women to express themselves or do they operate like the traditional media? How can we rate women’s access to ICT and the policies of African states in terms of the promotion of women and gender issues through it? Do media pluralism and the commodification of information increase gender inequalities by crystallizing more the stereotypical images, especially those of women? What exactly can be done as a way of checking the so-called tabloids which use degrading images of women as illustrations? How do we resolve the issue of gender disparity in the media, with low number of women at the decision-making level of media outlets, resulting also in a poor representation of women in the contents?

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