This research project will focus on Ghanaian women’s organising and campaigning strategies under military, single-party, and short-lived multi-party governments, particularly in the under-studied period between the mid 1960s and the early 1990s. During this time, Ghanaian women negotiated national priorities, cultural particularities and universalist ambitions, both at home and as part of an international women’s movement.
Ghanaian women were important players in the creation and implementation of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, and they campaigned for new national laws on marriage, divorce, inheritance, and child maintenance. By highlighting their ideas and their strategies, we will challenge the representation of women as passive bearers of timeless and essentialised ‘African culture’, and reshape public understanding of gender activism as an integral part of Ghana’s national history and international relations.
This research project coincides with a renewed debate on Affirmative Action to address the under-representation of women in public life in Ghana. By partnering with people beyond academia, we contribute to these important debates.
The Archive of Activism project is funded by the British Academy’s Sustainable Development Programme, which is supported by the UK Government’s Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF).
An additional grant for the purchase of film equipment was made by the University of Birmingham’s Institute for Global Innovation.