Building on earlier projects that documented gender activism since Ghana’s return to multi-party democracy in 1992, this project will focus on the preceding - and severely understudied - three decades: 1966-92. Through oral history and archival research, the project aims to identify how Ghanaian women organised under military, single-party and short-lived multi-party governments; and how they negotiated national priorities, cultural particularities, and universalist ambitions through the international women’s movement.
The project looks to push back against older approaches to heritage, which represented women as passive bearers of timeless and essentialised ‘African culture’. It will carve out a space for gender activism and ‘political women’ within Ghana’s public history. By centring on the experiences of Ghanaian gender activists, and exploring their negotiation of national priorities, cultural particularities and universalist ambitions, this project will also counter delegitimising and disempowering discourses.