Format: MS-Word Chapters: 1-5
Pages: 69 Attributes: Primary Data/questionnaire, Data Analysis
1.1 Background to the study
The national census (2006) put Nigeria population at 140,003,542m people, 68,293,683m being women. Despite the numerical strength, Nigerian women lag far behind men in most indicators of socio-cultural development. Women in Nigeria face a variety of constraints, many of which are gender specific. They demonstrate the lowest human indicators in the family, health wise, nutrition, economy, education and religion.
Today’s pervading sense of global space is also raising awareness of cultural particularities and diversity. Various cultural forces in different parts of the world are laying competing claims to providing institutions and groups with the framework for identity formation leaving out the place of women liberty in cultural and social decision that dictate what should be done in the society. Women appear unaware of their disadvantaged position because of culture which has set a criterion of hard work (in cooking, childcare, fetching water and firewood, etc) and consent for the ‘’Good Woman’’. The definition of feminity in our culture especially in Africa has become synonymously with domesticity, while masculinity is associated with mobility and opportunity in the supradomestic sphere.
According to Oakley (1972), ‘’ sex ‘’ refers to the biological division into male and female while ‘’ gender’’ refers to the parallel and socially unequal division into feminity and masculinity. Gender draws attention, therefore to the socially constructed aspects of differences between women and men. But the term gender has since become extended to refer not only to individual identity and personality but also, at the symbolic level, to cultural ideals and stereotypes of masculinity and feminity and at the structural level to the sexual division of labour in institutions and organisations.
However studies have shown that there is overwhelming evidence that virtually no society in the world provide women equal status with men. Although, anthropologists have found that women are given considerable society recognition and power in some societies, there exist no societies in which there publicity recognize power exceeds that of men, women, especially in developing countries are described as the “Neglected Majority’’, “ The weak” and “poorest of poorest’’. Following the United Nation decade of women in Nairobi, forward looking strategies were developed for the advancement of women.
As a guide to these strategies, Nigeria has been taking steps to improve the status of women by formatting a blue print on women‘s education, creation of women’s commission and a ministry for Women Affairs. Despite all these measures by government to reduce the marginalization of women, the subjugation of women still prevail in the Nigeria society, whereby women are seen as “social-lepers’’ and “Incompetent beings’’ in the society.
Subsequently, there has been an ongoing battle by authorities of tertiary instructions across Nigerian campuses to get rid of in-appropriate dressing especially by female students in Nigerian higher institutions. This is very vital because the pattern at which students dress especially female is an ‘’Eye-sore’’ and this calls for attention. Therefore, there is a need to examine the actual processes leading to the implementation of dress code in Nigerian universities.
1.2 Statement of the problem
Gender discrimination is a key obstacle to development and it is a major cause of social injustice. Generally, the issue of patriarchy is probably the most pronounced from of discrimination against womanhood. Consequently, the issue of gender equality in the provision of dress code and its implementation in Nigerian higher institutions has posed a great threat between the school authority and the students.
Under the 1975 sex discrimination Act, students could argue that the dress code for girls is more restrictive than those for boys. The individual right of the girls to wear what they like has been restricted, the implementation and enactment of dress code for undergraduates in some universities has posed a threat on the freedom and individuals rights of students, especially female students.
Furthermore, the issue of in-appropriate dressing in higher institutions needs a profound definition. Generally, female students tend to be discriminated against in various ways. First of all, the protection of female sexuality by the implementation and enactment of dressing codes in higher institutions tend to go beyond the purpose of promoting morality reduction in the level of moral decadence in the Nigerian society, but there must also be concern for the free expression of female students in the enactment of any dress codes.
In essence, the roles of the administrative in the Nigerian university should be that of creating a suitable environment for promoting gender equality in schools through legislative and policy reform, investing in redistribution, by targeting resource for female students and introducing special measures to reduce inequalities and reducing the high rate paranoid disorders on girls and women.
Moreover, the enactment of dress code for undergraduate in higher institutions is an action that brings about different reactions from students. Similar to these the provision of the dress code regulation has generated so many controversies that need to be examined. According to vanguard newspaper of July, 7, 2004. Popular opinion has it that the action of enacting and implementing a dress code for Nigeria universities is coming a little too late and the reasons for enacting dress code could make it difficult for students to accept the imposition of a dress code in the university.
1.3 Research Questions
In order to achieve the purpose of this research, the study will attempt to provide answers to the following research questions.
i. What are the factors leading to the enactment of dress code regulation in Nigerian tertiary institutions?
ii. what are the possible effects of the implementation of dress code on Nigerian university students?
iii. Is the enactment of dress code possible in Nigerian tertiary institutions?
iv. Could the enactment of dress code stand the test of time in Nigerian tertiary institutions?
v. What are the possible mechanism to make the enactment of dress code last?
1.4 Objectives of the study
The broad objective of this study is to identify the factors accounting for the increasing concern about the dressing pattern of students in Nigeria tertiary institutions and gender equity in the provision of dress code and its implementation. The specific objectives includes,
i. To examine the process leading to the enactment of the dress code regulation in Nigeria tertiary institutions.
ii. To examine the possible effects of the implementation of the dress code on Nigeria university students.
iii. To determine the possibility of the enactment of dress code in Nigeria tertiary institutions
iv. To ascertain whether or not the enactment of dress code will stand the test of time in Nigeria tertiary institutions.
v. To determine the possible mechanism that will make the enactment of dress code last.
1.5 Significance of the study
Foremost, this research work is significant to students as it will x-ray dress pattern of students, especially female students in Nigeria higher institutions. Regardless of the many research studies pointing to the effect of indecent dress code in many Nigerian Universities, Kogi State University inclusive, the proximate factors influencing the implementation of dress code have receives negligible attention.
In addition with the reference to Nigeria university emphasis has not been laid on the impact of articulation of various activities that highlight the interplay of socio-cultural factors on one hand and the consequence of the non-articulation of these factors on the implementation of dress code on the other.
More so, the present study investigates the complex relationship between the given milieu and the factors responsible for the increasing concern about the dressing pattern of students in Nigeria higher institutions. Besides, the association between gender discrimination and the provision of dress code a historical assessment of the dressing pattern of undergraduates will be investigated in order to highlight their individual and collective strength and weaknesses, which would serve as a guide for both interventions and further research.
Finally, the justification for the study will be in the reduction of discrimination against women in society (Nigeria) so as to bring about meaningful and rapid development of the country.
1.6 scope of the study
The study is limited to the male and female undergraduate students in Kogi State University, Anyigba Kogi State. Also, the study covers some administrative officers in the school. It concentrates on gender perception and the dress code in the Nigerian universities. It looks into how the provision of implementations and enactment of dress code, the attitude of the students towards the enactment and the view of the university administrators in relation to the issue of appropriate dressing.
In this wise, the study is directed at revealing the process leading to the enactment and implementation of the dress code, the attitude of students towards the enactment, gender differences and the social circumstances revolving around the enactment an its implications.
1.7 Conceptual Clarification
Discrimination: Treating a person or group differently (usually worse) than others.
Gender: According to Ann Oakley (1972) gender refers to the culturally specific pattern of behaviour either actual or normative which are attached to the sexes. That, in the condition of being male or female.
Higher-Institution: A tertiary institution or higher school of learning i.e. post-secondary school such as university, polytechnic and college of education.
Inequality: This refers to the difference in sizes, degree; circumstance especially an unfair difference in rank, wealth and opportunity.
Patriarchy: A society or country controlled or governed by men.
Stratification: This refers to the unequal distribution among member of a society attributes qualities and possessions that are regarded within the society as desirables. It denoted a systematic hierarchy of social positions due to the possession of certain characteristics, whose occupants are treated as superior, equal or inferior to one another and may be inform of religion, race, ethnic background, sex or gender.
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