"Notions of gender within the ANC Youth League (ANCYL): a key to understanding present-day responses to gender controversies"

This work discusses the ANCYL constitution, the 2001 “ANCYL and its role in the struggle for Gender Equality” and the “ANCYL Perspective on Gender Relations and Women’s Emancipation” (of 2011) and unpacks the ways in which a particular conceptualisation of gender relations (within these documents) may provide insight into ANCYL responses to contemporary gender controversies. Drawing on a Foucauldian framework, this research considers the ways in which discourses work to construct a particular understanding of gender relations (within the Youth League). These discourses include gender as a social construct, the distinction between sex/gender, the fixity of the category of sex and heterosexual desire. This work extends these insights and suggests that there is a particular shape of hegemonic masculinity at play within the Youth League – a shape of masculinity that stands at odds with the provisions of ANCYL documents that commit to the pursuit of equal gender relations.
Thesis (M.A.)--University of the Witwatersrand, Faculty of Humanities, Political Studies, 2013