Gender refers to the socially constructed roles, activities and attributes that a particular society considers appropriate for men and women, explains the World Health Organization. The distinct roles, reinforced by legal systems and religion, have historically given rise to gender inequalities not only in health care but with education and employment opportunities. Globalization has challenged the most archaic perceptions of gender roles through books, films and other media; new technologies in satellite television and the internet; policies of multinational corporations and tourism. Human rights groups reach across borders to lend support and inspiration to those in other lands; the United Nations and other international target gender equality as a major goal.

Human Trafficking Casts Shadow on Globalization

Traffickers reap huge profits at the expense of society's most vulnerable
Michele A. Clark
April 23, 2003

Prime Minister Abe’s New Clothes

Halfhearted apologies for past behavior can raise questions about Japan’s present and future role
Alexis Dudden
March 28, 2007

Filipino Catholic Church Continues to Fight Family Planning

Health officials estimate 70 percent of pregnancies are terminated because parents cannot afford children
Marilen J. Danguilan
January 13, 2016

How the One-Child Policy Changed China

Countries with aging populations will rethink standards on work, social insurance and pensions
Aileen Clarke
November 30, 2015

ISIS Wives and Enforcers in Syria Recount Collaboration, Anguish and Escape

Women joined brigades expected to intimidate neighbors and repeatedly married jihadists
Azadeh Moaveni
November 24, 2015

Short of Workers and Consumers, China Abandons One-Child Policy

The announcement lifted stock prices for foreign firms that make baby products
October 29, 2015

Ashraf Ghani's Bold Move for Taliban Peace

Both sides are divided; distrust runs high
David Loyn
July 10, 2015