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Economics | Global Majority E-Journal

Global Majority

Volume 1, Number 2 (December 2010)—download Full Issue

Maternal Schooling in Pakistan:
The Girl Effect in Action

By Lisa Gabrielson
In Pakistan, women have long been second-class citizens due to a deeply embedded set of religious and cultural values that have prevented equality between men and women, and between boys and girls. Recently, the Pakistani government has been investing a large amount of funds into education. While in the past most of the Pakistani Government’s segregated education funding went mostly to boys’ schools, there has been increased international pressure to expand the availability of primary education to girls. The collateral effect of women’s education expands far beyond the ability to read and write. Women with an education have more influence and more bargaining power when it comes to making decisions, which is beneficial for their families as well as society. When women are educated there is a drastic decrease in fertility, maternal mortality, infant mortality, and child mortality. This is called the girl effect. This paper reviews the girl effect based on the recent experience in Pakistan.

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Effects of Neoliberal Reforms on Small-Scale
Agriculture in Brazil

By Alexandra Huddell
Following the 1980s debt crisis, many developing countries like Brazil were pushed by the International Monetary Fund to adopt a variety of neoliberal reforms which limited government interventions, reduced subsidies, and opened up the economy to international competition and trade. This article reviews the effects these neoliberal reforms had on small-scale agriculture in Brazil, by looking specifically at coffee farmers. It shows that even though production increased initially for all coffee producers, market competitiveness soon favored capital-intensive landowners and foreign interests and thus marginalized small rural farmers. The reforms also had the unintended consequences of an accelerated urban migration and environmental degradation.

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Climate Change in Zambia: Impacts and Adaptation

By Couroche Kalantary
This article summarizes the impacts of climate change in Zambia as well as Zambia’s adaptation efforts, both of which are detailed in Zambia’s National Adaptation Programme of Action (NAPA) of September 2007. The article provides also (1) a brief review of the Zambia-specific climate change literature and (2) some empirical background on Zambia’s socio-economic status and Zambia’s agriculture. Among others, the article comes to the conclusion that in addition to international assistance, the Zambian government needs to become more capable of providing some sort of security for its people.

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The Caste System:
Effects on Poverty in India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka

By Jasmine Rao
Though mostly outlawed, the caste system continues to be one of the key drivers of poverty and inequality in South Asia. This article reviews the linkage between poverty and the caste system in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka. It also discusses the situation of the so-called Dalits (untouchables), which are typically considered to fall outside of the caste system. In addition to secondary evidence based on recent literature analyzing the relevance and impact of the caste system on poverty, the article is also based on an interview with a young male Indian, who experienced the impact of the caste system as well as the impact of the recently adopted reservation system for India's Dalits.

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