Gender Equality in Academia: Intentions and Consequences

Gender inequality persists in academia. This review article examines how universities around the world act on gender inequalities through gender equality measures. The analytical hypothesis is that gender equality measures are a response to how problems of inequality are understood and, as such, they also reveal why inequalities are sustained in academia. A wide variety of approaches are in use, but this article focuses on three of the most common: gender mainstreaming, affirmative action, and mentoring programs. The review recognized a global pattern of gender discrimination in academia as well as differences between countries and disciplines. The article departs from a critical gender-equality approach provided by current feminist research. It concludes that gender equality measures focus mainly on women and men, ignoring intersecting categories of discrimination, and that weaknesses in implementing meritocratic practices play a key role in upholding inequalities. The article suggests that critical feminist knowledge can help lead the way toward more challenging perspectives on gender equality in academia, in which relations of power, local and national contextualizations, as well as intersecting categories of discrimination can be made visible.

Re-imagining Cosmopolitanism in Post-Apartheid South Africa: Reviving Historical “Cosmubuntuism” in Forced Removal Spaces for a Democratic Future

While the colonial-apartheid governance was obsessed with “segregation” as a policy imperative, culturally diverse communities were established in many South African urban spaces. When the National Party came to power in 1948, these culturally mixed spaces became prime targets for destruction as they represented the antithesis of apartheid segregation: integration. With the promulgation of the Group Areas Act (1950), places like District Six, South End, Fietas (Pageview), and many others, were bulldozed to the ground and their inhabitants were forcibly removed to resettle in separate, racially exclusive townships. Given the post-1994 democratic transformation and its subsequent struggle to undo the legacy of colonial-apartheid, those cultural mixed spaces represent the best examples of what contemporary South Africa needs to aspire to become a democratic society. Considering the contestation around the concept “cosmopolitan” to describe culturally integrated living spaces, this paper defines those historical communities as “cosmubuntu” communities, emerging from pre-colonial Ubuntu communities. An argument is constructed that “cosmubuntu” communities go beyond Eurocentric cosmopolitanism, but also grew out of the Khoi-san expression “!ke e: /xarra //ke”—“diverse people unite”—which informs the African humanist philosophy of Ubuntu: “I am human through other humans” Using the historical case study methodology, this article conceptualises “cosmubuntuism” and illustrates its manifestations in three communities destroyed by forced removals: Fietas (Pageview), District Six, and South End. Forced removals literature is employed to answer the research question: what are the manifestations of “cosmubuntuism” in pre-apartheid South Africa and how can this concept encapsulate “unity in diversity” in a post-apartheid South Africa? Recommendations are made to integrate the history of “cosmubuntuism” and forced removals in a post-apartheid curriculum.

Challenges of Immigrant Parents: Narratives of South Korean Mothers in the US Context

Parents of diverse students can be one of the most abundant sources for sociocultural knowledge. Therefore, this study provides experiential knowledge through the stories of immigrant parents, aimed at deepening educators’ understanding and raising their consciousness of diverse students and families, and equity in the educational system. Four South Korean immigrant mothers, who moved to the US in adulthood and were mothers of children attending public school, were purposefully selected as the participants. A narrative inquiry was employed to listen to their schooling experiences in the US. Three main challenges were identified from the Korean immigrant mothers’ narratives. Practical implications, as well as suggestions for future research were discussed.