Edited by Maria Alesi and Leah Eryenyu

From the Margins to the Centre: Discourses on the Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Women in Uganda.

This publication, “From the Margins to the Centre” borrows from Bell Hooks’ seminal critique of mainstream feminism’s centering of white privileged women’s issues at the expense of non-white women. With this collection of essays, we attempt to render visible the voices and experiences of women in all their diversities, and to collate and amplify demands for a pandemic response and recovery that is time-bound, inclusive and gender-conscious.

As the Covid-19 pandemic spread in early 2020, laying waste to economies, breaking critical support systems necessary for wellbeing, and casting great uncertainty on the future of humanity, it found a deeply unequal world lurching from crisis to crisis. The people on the margins, those living across the tracks were mostly women. They were existing, but not as bonafide citizens of the world with a legitimate stake in influencing policy and practice in the socio-political and economic sphere. Instead, women are living in service of the global neo-liberal capitalist machinery, providing productive and reproductive labour, consuming overpriced and unnecessary goods churned out of the rapacious system. The pandemic found a world where women lay at the bottom of the heap of the exploited, while the wealthy elite strengthened their stranglehold on finite resources. Covid-19 exposed a world order held together precariously by individualism and wealth-seeking; a world unprepared to meet the demands of a crisis that required collective action. This has been to the detriment of those on the margins.

From the margins to the centre

Discourses on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on women in Uganda
Kampala, 2021

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