Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


African American Studies


Horace Campbell


African women;East Africa;Pan Africanism;ubuntu;Uganda

Subject Categories

Arts and Humanities | Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies | Women's Studies


The thesis investigates how PAWO has engaged with and defined African cultural values and practices, while also examining the social and political challenges it has faced and its prospects as a social and political organization. The research explores the formation of PAWO during liberation movements in Africa, when women played pivotal roles in the creation of new nations. As the continent transitioned from liberation movements to government development, PAWO underwent significant transformations influenced by socioeconomic events and social developments. Key factors shaping PAWO's evolution include the emergence of "femnocrats" as women gained formal political roles, a decline in local women's participation, and ongoing political discussions and conflicts related to gender roles and sexuality. The thesis aims to address two central research questions: the establishment of PAWO and its evolution over time. By charting the historical trajectory of PAWO from its origins as the All African Women's Conference to its current form, the study identifies significant epochs that have shaped the organization's development. The research conceptualizes PAWO as a Pan-African organization, drawing on the perspectives of scholars like Sylvia Tamale and Grace Bantebya Kyomuhendo. In summary, the thesis argues that PAWO emerged during Africa's liberation struggles, with women actively participating in nation-building efforts. As the continent transitioned to more established state systems, PAWO underwent substantial transformations. In addition to economic and political factors, broader societal changes, such as the rise of "femnocrats," declining local women's participation, and discussions on gender and sexuality, played a significant role in driving shifts and restructuring within the organization.


Open Access



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