FCWSRC | Women, Money, Death and Patriarchy: The Kenyan Experience

Monday, April 8, 2019 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm
83 College Street | Mount Holyoke College

Sharon Otieno was a second year student at Rongo University in Kenya. She was raped, brutally murdered, and deposited in a bush in Uriri, Migori County, on September 3, 2018. Okoth Obado, her rich boyfriend and governor of Migori County, was arrested and accused of the murder. Sharon was thought to be involved in a phenomenon locally known as "sponsorship" where rich men sponsor young girls’ expensive lifestyles. Sharon’s story provoked Kinyanjui to interrogate the issue of women, money, death and patriarchy in Kenya in the context of women's financial uncertainty. Kenyan women are excluded from global financial circuits and have been struggling to earn money in difficult and dangerous terrains, including engaging in precarious work in domestic services, quarrying stones, picking tea, coffee and flowers or spending time in fish markets to make money. This is a contradiction to the lived experiences of girls in sponsored relationships where beauty, youth and sex play a role in accessing money. In this talk, Kinyanjui will trace the reality of Kenyan women's financial precarity from its introduction during the colonial time to the present day Kenya. Kinyanjui will aim to answer the following questions: How were women incorporated into the global money culture? What were the women’s reactions to the introduction of money? What are the emergent male female relationships in relation to money? How has money affected women’s lived feminists’ lives?

Sponsored by the Five College Women's Studies Research Center. Dinner provided. RSVP to https://marykinyanjui.eventbrite.com *