Status Of Women’s And Gender Studies in Pakistan
The discipline of Women’s Studies has emerged in west especially after the Second Wave Feminism while Gender Studies emerged in 1990s due to the expansion of the scope of Women Studies. The basic purpose behind the creation of these fields of study was to appraised and acknowledged the importance of women in society. In Pakistan both the discipline got roots in early Ninety’s and since then it has been taught in many universities across the country. The status and importance of these disciplines in perspective of Pakistan can be analyzed under the following heading.
Origin Of Women’s And Gender Studies In Pakistan
In Pakistan women issues got much public attention in 1970s due to the sincere efforts of some committed feminists of that time which resulted in the creation of Women’s Division. In 1989 the Division decided the opening of centers of Women’s Studies in some universities. In response to their application Pakistan’s Ministry of Women Development established “Center of Excellence for Women Studies” (CEWS) in 1989, in five public universities. Since then the discipline of Women’s and Gender Studies have been taught regularly and the number of students’ enrolment in these fields have increased with the passage of time.
Status Of Women’s And Gender Studies In Pakistan
The establishment of Center of Excellence for Women Studies in universities has not only helped in elaborating women’s issues in society but also has suggested many steps for their solutions. Both theoretical and practical struggle in the field has not only produced great feminist leaders but also has led to the development of many new feminist organizations in the country such as CircleWomen and Women In Struggle for Empowerment (WISE).
Over the years Women’s Studies and its feminist organizations have helped in the empowerment of women in Pakistani society. In this regard many indoor work programmes such as sewing, cooking and teachings have been introduced from time to time.
Public awareness about women in general and maternal health care in particular has increased by the literary work of Women’s Studies centers. Similarly an enormous work has also been done by these centers and their graduates in the provision of equal education and job opportunities to both men and women in society.
Problems Of Pakistan With Women And Gender Studies
Both the discipline of Women’s and Gender Studies have emerged in the west and therefore all the literary work and theories of these disciplines have been formulated and designed in perspective of the western culture. Pakistan is an Islamic Republic country having its own customs and traditions which contradict altogether with the western concepts about women and their freedom. It is very unfortunate that despite of passing more than three decades of the opening of Women’s Studies Centers in the country these disciplines are still taught in universities based on western thoughts which totally contradict with our society. Therefore there is a dire need of the modification of these views and ideas in perspective Pakistani culture and society.