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Double Marginalized Livelihoods: Invisible Gender Inequality in Pastoral Societies


  • Adugna Eneyew

    () (Department of Agricultural Economics and Extension, Jimma University, Jimma, Po. Box 307, Ethiopia)

  • Sileshi Mengistu

    () (Department of Civic and Ethical Studies, Arba Minch University, Arba Minch, Po. Box 21, Ethiopia)


Achieving gender equality is the Third Millennium Development Goal, and the major challenge to poverty reduction is the inability of governments to address this at grass root levels. This study is therefore aimed at assessing gender inequality as it pertains to socio-economic factors in (agro-) pastoral societies. It tries to explain how “invisible” forces perpetuate gender inequality, based on data collected from male and female household heads and community representatives. The findings indicate that in comparison with men, women lack access to control rights over livestock, land, and income, which are critical to securing a sustainable livelihood. However, this inequality remains invisible to women who appear to readily submit to local customs, and to the community at large due to a lack of public awareness and gender based interventions. In addition, violence against women is perpetuated through traditional beliefs and sustained by tourists to the area. As a result, (agro-) pastoral woman face double marginalization, for being pastoralist, and for being a woman.

Suggested Citation

  • Adugna Eneyew & Sileshi Mengistu, 2013. "Double Marginalized Livelihoods: Invisible Gender Inequality in Pastoral Societies," Societies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 3(1), pages 1-13, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jsoctx:v:3:y:2013:i:1:p:104-116:d:23440

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    More about this item


    (agro-) pastoral women; gender inequality; double marginalization; well-being; quantitative research; Ethiopia;

    JEL classification:

    • A13 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Social Values
    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • P - Economic Systems
    • P0 - Economic Systems - - General
    • P1 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems
    • P2 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies
    • P3 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Institutions and Their Transitions
    • P4 - Economic Systems - - Other Economic Systems
    • P5 - Economic Systems - - Comparative Economic Systems
    • Z1 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics


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