Patriarchal influences on the lives of African adolescent girls from child-headed households

Charmaine Leatham, Jace Pillay, Helen Dunbar-Krige

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


This study examined the gendered experiences of patriarchal family life by adolescent girls from a low socio-economic status (SES) neighbourhood in South Africa. The informants were nine girls from an urban setting, three of whom were from child-headed homes. The six others lived with extended family and served to provide typical experiences for girls from the same community. Data on the girls’ experience of patriarchal values were gathered using focus group discussions and a photo-voice booklet. Thematic analysis of the data suggested pervasive patriarchal value influences on the adolescent girls–including pressure from within themselves to prove their academic abilities, as well as being competent and responsible in daily living responsibilities. The informant girls perceived their greater educational aspirations to be discounted by their male peers, who did not seem to take them seriously.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)470-472
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Psychology in Africa
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • black African adolescent girls
  • career aspirations
  • educational psychologists
  • endarkened feminism
  • gender-roles
  • patriarchal culture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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