An ethnographic exploration of the relationship between women and development in Ghana

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Lambert, Heather K.
Lassiter, Luke E.
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Thesis (M.A.)
Department of Anthropology
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This study was an attempt to identify the relationship between women and non-governmental organizations in Ghana. It was conducted over a period of one year in the capital city of Accra. Ethnographic and feminist methodology were the framework for the fieldwork and text. Interviews, observations and discussions with aid workers and development recipients determined the perimeters and rendered meaning. Women dominated both sides of development and aid work in Ghana; however, there was limited interaction between them. Female recipients of development were not consulted regarding development projects and were not familiar with the scope and implications of international aid. Female development personnel from both Ghana and the United States were separated from the communities and people they worked for personally and professionally. The development workers did not consider consultation with female clients a necessity or an obligation. Both groups of women struggled to incorporate the concepts and implications of development into their situated reality.