Martha Akawa: The sexual politics of the Namibian liberation struggle

PhD-thesis, Institute of History, University of Basel (2010)

Women’s contributions against apartheid under the auspices of the Namibian liberation movement SWAPO and their personal experiences in exile take center stage in this study. Male and female leadership structures in exile are analysed whilst the sexual politics in the refugee camps and the public imagery of female representation in SWAPO’s nationalism receive special attention. The party’s public pronouncements of women empowerment and gender equality are compared to the actual implementations of gender politics during and after the liberation struggle.

“It is my contention that unless we rewrite history from a woman’s perspective and by ourselves, we will not have a complete recollection of our past and be in a position to negotiate a space on the independence agenda. Martha Akawa has made us aware of this responsibility and asks of us what legacy we as women who fought in the liberation struggles will leave to future generations of women?” Advocate Bience Gawanas, Windhoek

Martha Akawa is the Head of the Department of Geography, History and Environmental Studies at the University of Nambia in Windhoek. She obtained her PhD in History from the University of Basel with support from the Kantonale Stipendienkommission für Nachwuchskräfte aus Entwicklungsländern.

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“It is my contention that unless we rewrite history from a woman’s perspective and by ourselves, we will not have a complete recollection of our past and be in a position to negotiate a space on the independence agenda. Martha Akawa has made us aware of this responsibility and asks of us what legacy we as women who fought in the liberation struggles will leave to future generations of women?”

 

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<dd> Advocate Bience Gawanas, Windhoek </dd>

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Martha Akawa: The Gender Politics of the Namibian Liberation Struggle. Basel Namibia Studies Series Vol. 13. Basel (Basler Afrika Bibliographien) 2014.