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.

Egypt: 10,000 March in Protest at Woman Dragged Half-Naked Through Street

Video of military attacks on women shocks world and could hasten transfer of power
December 26, 2011

World Will Miss Economic Benefit of 1.8 Billion Young People

Families and governments alike must invest in youth potential
Fiona Harvey
October 31, 2011

Asia’s Lack of Babies

Young women avoid childbirth, focusing on personal wealth rather than national economic growth
Philip Bowring
September 20, 2011

Saudis Behead an Indonesian Maid

Outrage over a woman’s story could lead to new protections for migrants
June 26, 2011

Driving Campaign for Saudi Women Challenges Custom

Testing religious edicts, women find safety in numbers
Mohammed Jamjoom
June 21, 2011