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JAMAICA: Review of Textbooks Reveals Bias

Smile Jamaica on 1 November reported that a recent gender review of several Caribbean history textbooks currently used in the Caribbean history syllabus for high schools has identified some disturbing trends that could weaken the struggle for gender equality and empowerment of women

The review, conducted by the Institute for Gender and Development Studies (Regional Coordinating Unit) at UWI in collaboration with the Caribbean Kunuku Collective (CKC), was designed to examine the extent to which history textbooks promote gender equality or replicate social inequality based on gender. The review which involved an analysis of images, language and contexts presented in the textbooks found that the majority of textbooks exhibit an absence of women as historical subjects, persistent inequalities between men and women and that masculintity was often associated with positions of power while femininity was associated with docility.

The IGDS, along with UNFPA which financed the review, will officially launch the findings on  7 November. On 1 November,  Jewel Quallo-Rosberg, Gender Specialist in the UNFPA Sub-regional Office for the Caribbean along with Susan Charles of the IGDS were guests on the television programme, Morning Time aired  on Television Jamaica. Watch in English: Smile Jamaica

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