Thesis On kinship Structures and Female Autonomy Framework

Women’s Autonomy or Female autonomy has widely been acknowledged as a major factor that contributes to better demographic outcomes. Female autonomy is a multi dimensional entity, which refers to different aspects of women’s live. The well quoted study of Dyson and Moore in the Indian context on “ On kinship Structures and Female Autonomy” (1983) define Autonomy as “ The capacity to manipulate one’s personal environment and the ability technical social and Psychological to obtain information and to use it as the basis for making decision & about one’s Private concerns and those of one’s intimates.” Female education and work participation are being considered as the two major proxy variables of women’s autonomy.
A number of terms have use to indicate women’s position in relation to men across different socio-cultures the term women’s status has been used in earlier studies to express gender disparities existing in a community with respect to development indicators wither on the micro or individual indicators or macro or structural indicators. However, it is use in other studies to refer to women Vs men positions across social economic and political hierarchies (Mason, 1987) Generally the concept of women’s status implies the women’s position in the structure of a family hierarchy (Mason, 1086, Larsen 2003).

Other later studies have been used autonomy, empowerment and gender stratification interchangeably in the communities without much conceptual precision (Morgan, 2002; Mason and Smith, 2000; Jejcebhoy, 2000).

However, women’s autonomy is defined by United Nations as women’s increased control over personal environment through control over resources and in formation in order to make decisions about one’s own concerns or about close family members.” It has been defined as “ the degree of women’s access to ( and control over) material resources (including food, income, land, and other forms of wealth) and to social resources (including knowledge), power, and prestige) within the family in the community and in the society at large” (Mason, 1986: 286). In another study women’s autonomy is defined as “ the ability to obtain information and use it as the basis for making decision about one’s private concerns and those of one’s intimates” (Dyson and More, 1783:37). Indeed, autonomy is gaining power in order to achieving goals and overcome the rigid patriarchal system and general based discrimination against women.
The linkage between women’s autonomy and utilization of contraception is confronting lack of consensus on appropriate measurement across communities (Morgan, 1995) Some of this confusion may be attributed to the conceptualization of women’s autonomy which has remained a challenge due to the cultural conditions a challenge due to the cultural conditions, family system and to what extends kinship religion and tradition, affected community as well as its multidimensional nature in a sense that autonomy concept can be perceived from individual, household or societal point of view.


Population Policies and the expansion of family programs during the seventies
studies have suggested that greater equality may encourage women’s autonomy and may facilitate the uptake of contraception because of increase female participation in decision making ( Hakim et al. 203), However it has not been set as a prerequisite for wide spread adoption of contraceptives (Amin, 1998). Much of the relevant demographic literature thus has addressed be positive( eleland et al, 1996). In this study, using data from the 2007 DHS the authors investigate the effect of women’s autonomy on her contraceptive use net of the effects of socio-economic demographic and other potential confounders.

the likes between gender inequality and fertility regulation has focused on women’s “autonomy” (Furuta and Salway, 2006; Cleland et al,. 1996). The concept of autonomy is multidimensional hence the factors included within the concept has also varied between authors. For most of the work in south Asia, women participation in household decision making her mobility and control over her financial resources have been taken as indicators of “ autonomy”. And this autonomy is Highly motivated by education. Education put direct influence on women’s autonomy. It increases access to knowldege, information and new ideas. For Bangladesh, using the 1989 DHS data, the links between her mobility and the decision making has been found to