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From property to care

In an interview with the NGO Sonke Gender Justice we explore how men understand relationships to women in terms of property and protection.

In the previous step you gained insight into how gender inequality between men and women in marriage is tied to religiously legitimized practices of bride price, lobola. Bride price emphasizes marriage as a transactional relationship, in which a husband provides and a wife gives. While some couples may be be able to navigate such meanings and develop a relationship of mutual care, respect as well as love alongside this, other couples may struggle to navigate this transactional dynamic.

In this video Vusi Cebekhulu gives further explanation of how men may come to understand their roles in the relationship as that of a protector and provider. Please note Vusi’s suggestions for how such cultural notions of protection can be transformed in a more gender equal understanding of the relationship.

What do you think about Vusi’s ideas for redefining what it means to provide to your partner? What examples does he give? Can you think of other things that people provide to their partners?

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Religion and Sexual Wellbeing: Pleasure, Piety, and Reproductive Rights

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