Handbook on Gender in Asia
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Handbook on Gender in Asia

Edited by Shirlena Huang and Kanchana N. Ruwanpura

The Handbook on Gender in Asia critically examines, through a gender perspective, five broad themes of significance to Asia: the ‘Theory and Practice’ of researching in Asia; ‘Gender, Ageing and Health’; ‘Gender and Labour’; ‘Gendered Migrations and Mobilities’; and ‘Gender at the Margins’. With each chapter providing an overview of the key intellectual developments on the issue under discussion, as well as empirical examples to examine how the Asian case sheds light on these debates, this collection will be an invaluable reference for scholars of gender and Asia.
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Chapter 11: Gendering work and labor in the agriculture sector: A focus on South Asia

Cynthia M. Caron

Abstract

Increasing feminization and deepening vertical integration in the agricultural sector influences the gendered relations of production and labor regimes. This chapter focuses on gendered labor relations in the agricultural sector with respect to men and women as producers in the field and their participation as value chain actors. Drawing on peer-reviewed scholarship and the grey literature published since 2007, the chapter focuses on gender and labor in South Asian agriculture. Substantive issues examined include: sex-disaggregated trends in the agricultural labor force, the implications of male off-farm migration for women, and the feminization of agriculture. To document the role that foreign direct investment has on the gendered relations of production, the chapter examines men’s and women’s participation in contract farming. Given that ‘farmer’ is a social construct and one that is often considered a masculine endeavor in the South Asian context, whether women disrupt this masculine framing is examined.

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