The gender-technology divide or perceptions of non-use?
First Monday

The gender-technology divide or perceptions of non-use? by Neha Kumar



Abstract
There exists a widely acknowledged gender divide in rural India that is perceived to complicate, often cripple, women’s access to various new media technologies, including mobile devices that their male counterparts have been using for several years. My research takes a deeper look at this divide to offer a more nuanced understanding that extends beyond the dualism of use and non-use and deconstructs the popular notions that rural Indian women are digitally illiterate, have little time or inclination to use technology, or would find it to be of little use. I analyze the role that patriarchal practices play in structuring the perceptions of women’s interactions with mobile phones using qualitative data collected over multiple site visits to Raebareli district in rural Uttar Pradesh (India).

Contents

Introduction
Methodology
Ownership, access, and use
Seeing is believing?
Not enough time?
Shared spaces, shared learning
Intermediated access
The gendered mobile phone
Hiding from men
Conclusion

 


 

Introduction

The penetration of mobile technology is rapidly extending to diverse, remote regions of use around the world. There persists a ‘gender-technology divide’ however, in low-resource regions where patriarchal structures are still prevalent, seen as disempowering women from engaging freely and openly with existing, available technology. Just as there are problems that have been widely discussed in relation to the ‘digital divide’ (Keniston, 2004), so is it problematic to see the women in these parts as occupying one side of this supposed gender-technology divide. This article aims to complicate this notion of the gender-technology divide and offer a deeper perspective into what this divide looks like and is in the context of mobile technology practices of rural Indian women.

Fortunati (2009) suggested that mobile media will intensify the gender and generational logics that are already at play. Oreglia and Kitner (2013) have highlighted the cultural differences that lead to gender disparities in mobile use in India, explaining the “agreed-upon but unspoken norms” that govern women’s behavior and the impact on mobile adoption by women in these parts. Tacchi, et al. (2012) have also studied the everyday use of mobile phones by women in rural India, discussing the role of the mobile as an active agent in complex and evolving gendered relationships. Tenhunen (2008) conducted an ethnographic study of the appropriation of the mobile phone in rural West Bengal (India) and how its use has led to a real and perceived reduction in domestic violence. The themes of patriarchy that surface in these works were prevalent in my findings as well, as I explored rural Indian women’s mobile phone ownership, access, and use. In this paper, I focus on how these patriarchal values play themselves out into creating popular perceptions of technology non-use by the women. I present findings from our study of mobile practices of women in rural India. I examine how men in these areas are inclined to believe that women in their communities are incapable of being technologically savvy, while women — on the contrary — frequently devise their own mechanisms to negotiate authority within the limiting patriarchal structure for their explorations with available technologies such as mobile phones. This paper then is not about the actual non-use of mobile phones and their various features; it focuses instead on the perceived non-use of mobiles by women. It uncovers the factors that lead to mistaken perceptions.

I used ethnographic methods to investigate the technology practices of women in rural India. Access to technology for both men and women in these parts mostly means having access to a mobile phone. In each of the villages I visited, there were roughly three to five youth (at most) who owned a laptop, but this ownership appeared to be limited to male youth. For women, the mobile phone was the only technological device that they had access to and frequently engaged with, partaking of and sharing mobile media with each other. In this paper, I examine the perceptions of non-use that persist among men whose wives or mothers were part of my study, analyzing the underlying reasons for their existence. Finally, I highlight the factors that may lead to the disparities between the technologic engagements of these women and common perceptions.

 

++++++++++

Methodology

This article draws on qualitative data collected over multiple site visits over the year 2014 that were part of a sustained engagement with communities in three blocks of the Raebareli district (Bachhrawan, Khiro, and Sareni) in rural Uttar Pradesh for a public health project targeting maternal health. Bachhrawan is most centrally located (on the state highway to Lucknow), Khiro is marginally less accessible, while Sareni is the most remote of the three. The aim of this study was to ascertain the nature of technologic engagements that the women in these parts have developed with the increasingly prevalent mobile phone. The organizations operating the public health project — Gram Vikas Sansthan (GVS) and Nehru Yuva Sangathan Tisi (NYST) — were my primary sources of access into these communities and helped me to reach out to my study participants. Being a woman and a Hindi speaker, originally from the state of Uttar Pradesh, gave me some advantage so that I did not need an interpreter for my work. However, being “similar but different” can be both a blessing and a curse (Song and Parker, 1995; Hodkinson, 2005) and there were certainly challenges that I faced on account of my identity as an Indian, Hindi-speaking woman currently living in America.

I began my study with the goal of interviewing 10–15 women and 10–15 men, all adult, married and unmarried. However, the manner in which my interviews unfolded was unconventional and worth describing. Though I would have preferred to arrange one-on-one meetings, I realized soon enough that this would be a challenge. Women in the village were not accustomed to being spoken to by ‘outside’ women, nor were they deeply familiar with the idea of ‘empowered’ women such as myself — much taller than average, with short hair, showing no clear signs of being married in terms of clothing or accessories. Men in the village did not consider it appropriate to be conversing with me one-on-one either. Though I did not need an interpreter to translate the dialect for me, I did need one to mediate the interactions so that both men and women were (relatively) at ease when they spoke with me.

My study included visits to approximately 15 local mobile shops spread across the three blocks. This is where I interviewed several of my male participants as well as local shopkeepers (all male). I was typically accompanied by one of my (male) research contacts, who would first introduce me to the interview participants to set up the conversation. I would then repeat the introduction, assuring these participants that I had no desire to print any articles with their identity (though perhaps they would not have minded), and obtaining their consent for the interview. Within minutes of my beginning to talk with the shopkeeper, a crowd of people would surround us. Though these onlookers were mostly curious, some would unabashedly intervene in the process and begin to answer my questions as well. A few times, they ended up taking over the interview to become the more avid respondents.

With the women I interviewed, I observed a similar pattern. My research contacts at GVS and NYST (largely women, in this case) would help in facilitating access to these women, but leave the scene once an interview setting was created. Though the group would be small to begin with, in no time would it reach an untenable size where I could no longer hope to obtain answers from every woman present. These interviews were challenging because, all at once, the responsibilities of moderating, managing participation, managing boredom, and sustaining interest seemed to be thrust upon me. However, in that these settings appeared to bring the most comfort to my interview respondents, I am inclined to believe that they produced more reliable data. Though the women seemed fairly open with and supportive of each other in general, it is possible that they held back details that they may have considered private. These “communal interviews” left me with an understanding of individual practices as well as social dynamics, and in the end I had spoken to roughly 50 men and 50 women, all adult but of varying ages and in varying levels of detail. Some sessions lasted only 15 minutes, but most ended up being about 1–1.5 hours long.

Participant response bias was a natural concern and, for triangulation of data, I also interviewed and organized focus group sessions with 10 community representatives (men and women) who have been involved in social initiatives for several years, engaging with my target communities on a daily basis. They were mostly employed by GVS and NYST, though not all. Some of them were also residents of the blocks I visited.

I analyzed my data in line with interpretivist and inductive approaches. I went through an iterative approach of coding my interview data and field notes in order to identify emergent themes. In my goal to maintain reflexivity, I also repeatedly went back to my own subjectivities as a researcher (Peshkin, 1988). In the current analysis, I am conditioned by my stance of feminist reflexivity, as I ask the “who” questions that Muller (2010) suggests we ask, addressing the problem of speaking of/for others that Alcoff (1991) discusses. My goal is to draw out the voices — both of the women in rural India, who are generally spoken for, and the men, who generally do the speaking. At the same time, I do acknowledge that it is I who is doing the speaking here, not these men or women, and I am conditioned by my own biases as a woman of Indian origin who views patriarchal structures as problematic, undesirably prohibitive, and regularly oppressive.

 

++++++++++

Ownership, access, and use

Prior research has discussed shared ownership of and access to mobile phones by women in rural India. For example, Tacchi, et al. (2012) discussed the attachment that women feel to their mobile phones, but that most of them only had shared access to the phones. This situation is changing fairly rapidly as women obtain access to their own devices. There are three scenarios that emerged as I inquired about phone access. First, many of the young married women had their own mobile devices. These were purchased, largely, by their husbands as gifts. Burrell, too, has discussed this practice and its implications in her work with rural Ugandan women (Burrell, 2010). College-going young women were generally unmarried and tended to own a mobile device given to them by their fathers, for the primary purpose of ensuring a safe commute. Second, older devices owned by the men were frequently handed down to the women. This required that men be at least on their second mobile device, which was widely the case at the time of my study. Third, even when women did not have their own mobile phones, there would be a device owned by “the household” that they would have access to, though they did not necessarily enjoy autonomous use of it through the day. Each of these scenarios is a by-product of the patriarchal forces at play. Burrell’s model of shared access to mobile phones in rural Uganda would label each of these as shared access, since the “purchaser” in all cases is the husband though the woman gets to use it for varying amounts of time. I choose, on the other hand, to use a somewhat relaxed definition of shared access where I consider a woman to have ownership of her mobile phone if she has autonomy over it at any point during the day. Although patriarchal forces do limit women’s access, I see it as critical that they do not prevent it, and that women do find their ways to negotiate these forces on a regular basis, as I discuss below.

Women’s uses of the mobile phone have evolved over time. Past work has focused primarily on their use of these devices for calling and the social and economic implications thereof (Donner, 2009, 2008; Tenuhen, 2008). As I found in my fieldwork, this is not the only prevalent use. In cases where the women were given these phones by their husbands, the primary purpose these devices were purchased to serve was to allow the man to contact his household and vice versa — as the need arose, and for the wife to be reachable in general. The mobile phones purchased these days, however, happen to serve a variety of other functions as well. Multimedia-enabled mobiles are as inexpensive as INR 600 (US$10) [1] and allow the user the luxuries of a memory card with audio and video content of choice. An informal, off-line content-sharing economy has flourished as a result and has been discussed in prior work (Kumar and Parikh, 2013).

In the interviews I organized with mobile shopkeepers, I found that very few continued to keep basic phone models in their shops. Some kept one or two Nokia models “just by chance if someone is interested in buying a basic device, like the aged people who have no other use for a mobile phone.” Multimedia devices are sold with a memory card and the card — in all the shops we visited — comes pre-loaded on mobile purchase with audio-video content for no extra charge, as has been documented previously (Kumar and Parikh, 2013). Women have gradually become accustomed, therefore, to the use of their devices for entertainment, widely partaking of the benefits of off-line mobile media. In each of my interviews, I observed young and old women using their phones, adept at cycling through their media and playing songs and videos. In one instance, it seemed as though a woman was taking a photo of me. When I asked her if she would show me what she was doing, I found that she had captured a video of me. Unable to hold back my surprise, I asked if others in the interview also knew how to record mobile videos. This led to a demonstration from several of them using their mobile phones to create videos of me. When I asked if they viewed videos on their mobiles, all of them promptly began to play videos (of various songs and films) and placed their mobiles before me.

The reason for my surprise was that I was not expecting this level of engagement of the women with their mobile devices. This was not only because of the general perception I had, from having done fieldwork in rural India in the past and being unaccustomed to coming across many women users, but particularly because my focus group conversations with several men in these communities had led me to expect otherwise, as I explain below.

 

++++++++++

Seeing is believing?

The spaces that the women I interviewed inhabit are starkly different from those that the men I spoke to occupy. The gendering of space is widely apparent, for the men tend to dominate public spaces such as marketplaces or common shared areas outside clusters of houses in the villages, while the women remain confined indoors. This makes it harder to gain access to the women in the villages, and often this access must be obtained by getting permission from the men. I began my inquiry with focus group discussions with various men who had been involved in local community initiatives targeting women’s health for several years, asking them whether the women in these communities had any interactions with mobile phones. “Do they use mobile phones?” I asked. Most of my respondents were unequivocal in their claims that women did not have the resources or skills to engage meaningfully with the mobile phone. The general response I received was that at a young age, girls did not have access to their own devices. When they were slightly older and married (and low marriage ages are quite common) they were too weighed down by household duties to have the time for mobile use. The women who were older were not even literate, I was told, so there was little chance of their experimenting with new technology. Raghav Sahu — an elderly gentleman at NYST who has worked extensively on various development initiatives in the community shared to this effect — “... where will these women find the time to use the phone for other things. They have to look after the kitchen, manage the household, take care of the children and the elders. They have no time.” However, a professor from a local girls’ high school who was also part of the focus group argued against Sahu’s claims by telling us that at his school, girls were “absolutely adept” at using mobile phones. Though the girls did not own their mobile phones, the professor informed us that they had ready access to mobile phones at home — their mothers’, the household’s devices, or their fathers’ phones — on which they would “figure everything out.” He claimed also that the other focus group members were “living in the old times” and needed to update their perceptions. The two men were talking about different user groups — Sahu was discussing older, married women, while the professor was talking about high school girls whom he taught. To triangulate the claims made by both Sahu and the professor, I took on the task of interviewing women, both young and old, with the prime goal of hearing what they had to say, allowing them to ‘speak for themselves’.

The perceptions I mention here are naturally impacted by what the participants have had a chance to see in their households and communities. The fact that women lead lives of relative confinement implies that the men are often not privy to their practices, particularly those they partake of with other women. Since the professor interacts with younger women in the community on a daily basis, his views appeared to be grounded in what he had observed. The other men did not have the same observations or experience to share from.

 

++++++++++

Not enough time?

I did find that Sahu was largely right in that the women — at least those I interviewed — led extremely busy lives. They were responsible for a host of household duties, including cooking for the family, tending to the elderly and the children, feeding the cows or other farm animals that they owned, among other daily chores. They did, however, find some leisure time during the day that gave them a chance to break out of this daily routine intermittently. As Savitri, a woman in her 30s or 40s (she wasn’t sure), responded when I asked her if she had time to watch movies on her mobile, “There is time. We get a few minutes here, a few minutes there. When the food is getting cooked, sometimes we put the mobile on the side and let it play. When it is time to rest in the afternoon, after lunch, and we are lying down to take some rest, we turn on the mobile. That is when we go through the videos, one by one.”

These pockets of time were available to the others as well, precious albeit brief respites from mundane everyday tasks, when listening to songs or watching movies in the background was a welcome distraction. As Savitri’s quote above suggests, partaking of mobile content on the phone was not necessarily an individual undertaking — it often took place in small groups of two or three women and possibly children — whoever happened to be home at the time.

 

++++++++++

Shared spaces, shared learning

When mobile activity takes place in groups, as mentioned above, it creates an informal learning space that affords the women a channel to learn from each other. In studying the context of Indian NGOs working to improve gender equity, Shroff and Kam (2011) have recorded stages that the women went through on their journey to empowerment. I found these stages to co-occur as I observed groups of women at a time, with their mobile devices, talking to and learning from each other. Different women occupied different points on the spectrum of use — some appeared to be more confident, more active, while others seemed more passive consumers of media. This diversity is of course to be expected. However, when we take an “out there” perspective (Taylor, 2011), we may miss these differences, failing also to recognize how those who are farther along use shared moments such as the above to transfer their skills to those who are lagging, thus playing the role of mediators (Latour, 2005). This aligns with Corbridge, et al.’s (2005) findings in the context of development projects that create spaces for negotiation among marginalized sections even when they do not have the explicit objective of doing so. The spaces created by collective mobile use are similar in this regard and lead to an exchange of ideas and abilities that may not have been possible otherwise.

 

++++++++++

Intermediated access

Prior work has discussed intermediated access to technologies in similar settings (Sambasivan, et al., 2010; Parikh and Ghosh, 2006; Kumar and Rangaswamy, 2013). As also documented in (Kumar and Anderson, 2015), it is often the children who play this role as they teach their mothers, aunts, or other elders how to use various features of the mobile phones. In cases where the women are unable to use certain features themselves, they ask the children in the household or neighborhood for help, with the understanding that “the children will do it with ease.” For example, though the women I spoke to sounded comfortable consuming the media on their phones, they did not appear as comfortable transferring media from one device to another via Bluetooth. Shanti — one of my women interviewees — mentioned: “When I need to do a send, I ask my nephew to do it for me. He knows how.” In some cases, the women also pick up these skills and learn “how to do a send,” while in others they continue to rely on this support structure, not necessarily investing the time to learn. A longitudinal study, which mine was not, may be able to shed greater light on how these attitudes evolve over time, as mobile devices become even more commonplace.

 

++++++++++

The gendered mobile phone

Though access intermediated by children above appeared to be the most popular means of media procurement for the women, there were others as well. Prior work captures this activity at mobile shops (Kumar and Parikh, 2013), the major difference being that women are not as freely able to visit mobile shops as men, particularly shops located in the village center market. A detailed survey of these shops led me to discover that women only frequented the most remote shops, those located nearest to their village. Shops that were more centrally located (say along or near the state highway) had a predominantly male clientele. Pradeep, who ran a mobile shop that was near the highway, informed me that his customers were “almost all male”. He added, however, “that does not mean they [the women] do not listen to songs or watch films.” I asked him to elaborate, and he explained that since it was not appropriate for women to go to these shops on their own, they would either come with their husbands but wait on the sides while the husband conducted the transaction, or send their husbands to load their mobiles’ memory cards with new content. Since in both cases the customer would still be male, I asked Pradeep how he was able to tell that it was a woman’s phone. He said, “oh that is easy ... if it is a woman’s mobile, it is a house phone, it will be clean. If it is a man’s phone, the content will be very different.” He said that, in such scenarios, his male customers would typically make it clear that the device in question would be used by their wives or their households. Though Pradeep is able to identify a man’s versus a woman’s phone from the content it has on it or the content requested for it, not all shopkeepers are as discerning. The general feedback I received from them was that because women did not come to their shops for procuring media, they were inclined to believe that women did not use mobile phones to engage themselves in interesting ways.

I visited a market in Bachhrawan that was more centrally located than the others and also closer to colleges. Here, younger women — the small percentage of them who are now beginning to attend college — are regular customers at some of the mobile shops I interviewed at. When asked about the mobile practices of these young women, the shopkeepers would say, “Oh they are ahead of the boys also ... .” Here, “ahead” of the boys does not literally mean ahead of (or even ‘equal to’) the boys in any measurable way, I learned. It means, in fact, that they are engaging more unexpectedly in the same activities that the boys may be expected to engage in — as I found when I asked them to break it down. This trend, however, represents a new reality for them — one that may take some time to fathom.

The idea that seeing is believing permeates through the marketplace and beyond. In the markets, the shopkeepers are influenced by what they see or do not see, leading them to believe that there exists a sharp divide at the age of marriage, and women who are unmarried are far more active users of the mobile phone than married women. This perception holds in the villages that I visited, where married women tend to stay in their households for the most part, particularly when outside men are present. When the women remain ‘hidden’ from the men in their (or their friends’ or relatives’) homes, the men may be more likely to believe that their exposure to technology and technologic interactions is negligible. Further, since the voices of the men are louder and carry much further than the women’s, their perceptions become truth for that society. The boundaries are certainly porous, as some of my interviews revealed, and some men (such as Pradeep above, or the shopkeepers in the Bachhrawan market) who showed greater discernment of women’s mobile practices may be instrumental, over time, in bringing about a change in popular perception.

 

++++++++++

Hiding from men

On the women’s end, even in cases where they could clear the misperceptions of the men, they may possess little incentive to do so. As Kant suggests in her study of how women negotiate patriarchy in their marital homes (Kant, 2014), there is an interest on the women’s end to not brandish all of their technological expertise, so as not to allow the husbands of in-laws to get the feeling that “they know too much.” Exposure to technology and the current abundance of media is new to their collective existence and often not very well understood. Because a large part of the media that men in these parts consume is explicit and ‘male-friendly’, these mobiles are also seen as devices intended for men, where women’s growing use is considered to meddle with and confuse that reality.

A shopkeeper I interviewed in the main market of Khiro told me that he had very few women customers. However, on being asked if any of his customers bought basic phones, he said that young, unmarried women did. In further conversation it unfolded that this would not be these women’s first phone, but their second hidden device that they would keep without telling their parents to engage in various activities that were publicly frowned upon and potentially embarrassing to parents, such as making calls to boys. When I asked the shopkeeper whether he knew of such a case, he said that it was common knowledge: “this is something every one knows.” As for the boys, he answered — as anticipated — that no one will want to know what the boys are up to — “no one asks, no one cares, they can do whatever they like.” In viewing women’s mobile practices, the focus of the men was mostly on aspects that may threaten to disturb the relationships and related power asymmetries that have existed between men and women. The consequences that women must face for being ‘found out’ can sometimes be extreme, as in the case of the news report from December 2014 that describes a ban on “jeans and mobiles” in the neighboring state Bihar’s Gopalganj district (Kumar, 2014).

Though the women do enjoy access to mobile devices and content, as this paper indicates, this access — and the use it allows — is admittedly kept under check by the patriarchal forces that be. It is worth noting, however, that the women are able to take advantage of this same patriarchy to create ‘safe’ spaces that do allow for technologic engagement and potential learning opportunities. In this way, social barriers that have traditionally prevented women from exposure to digital technologies might actually play a role in facilitating this exposure as well.

 

++++++++++

Conclusion

The aim of this article is to stress that there are many more shades to the gender-technology divide than are visible on fleeting glance. There are, of course, women who are digitally illiterate and make use of mobile phones only for making phone calls, that too by following a line of symbols they are used to, rather than knowing which numbers to press. However, there also exist young college-going women in their twenties who are able to conduct mobile transfers, go online, and navigate their smartphones with ease. Between these two ends of the spectrum there is a large variation of technologic expertise that I found the women in my interviews to have. These women in my study, however, remain largely (though not entirely) hidden and their voices are subsequently harder to hear than the men’s, leading to a general assumption that what the men believe of women’s technology use must be true. While women silently negotiate patriarchal boundaries to engage with technology in shared spaces, men mostly prefer to perpetuate perceptions that are largely inaccurate and uni-dimensional. There is a sociocultural equilibrium that is maintained as a result — one that neither the men nor the women are too keen to disturb, aside from extreme circumstances that may sometimes arise, as in the news article reference above.

Why is it important, then, for us as researchers to recognize these mistaken perceptions? Like I was, there may be other researchers engaged in developmental initiatives that target women and aim to introduce technologies to them. It is important to appreciate, thus, that popular perceptions may be inaccurate and potentially disruptive to this task. At the same time, the disparity between perception and reality exists because of long-standing patriarchal structures that women have learned to maneuver and negotiate their agency within, so they cannot be thrown out of the equation altogether. Any endeavor to introduce technologies must therefore factor in both — that the voices of the women are softer and will need greater attention to be heard and that, perhaps, they are softer in ways that benefit them and ensure self-preservation. End of article

 

About the author

Neha Kumar is an Assistant Professor with joint appointment in the Sam Nunn School of International Affairs and the School of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology.
E-mail: neha [dot] kumar [at] inta [dot] gatech [dot] edu

 

Note

1. These prices are regularly falling, however, so it may be noted that this data was collected in November 2014.

 

References

L. Alcoff, 1991. “The problem of speaking for others,” Cultural Critique, number 20, pp. 5–32.

J. Burrell, 2010. “Evaluating shared access: Social equality and the circulation of mobile phones in rural Uganda,” Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, volume 15, number 2, pp. 230–250.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1111/j.1083-6101.2010.01518.x, accessed 22 October 2015.

S. Corbridge, G. Williams, M. Srivastava, and R. Veron, 2005. Seeing the state: Governance and governmentality In India. New York: Cambridge University Press.

J. Donner, 2009. “Blurring livelihoods and lives: “The social uses of mobile phones and socioeconomic development,” Innovations, volume 4, number 1, pp. 91–101.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1162/itgg.2009.4.1.91, accessed 22 October 2015.

J. Donner, 2008. “Research approaches to mobile use in the developing world: A review of the literature,” Information Society, volume 24, number 3, pp. 140–159.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1080/01972240802019970, accessed 22 October 2015.

L. Fortunati, 2009. “Gender and the mobile phone,” In: G. Goggin and L. Hjorth (editors). Mobile technologies: From telecommunications to media. London: Routledge, pp. 23–34.

P. Hodkinson, 2005. “‘Insider research’ in the study of youth cultures,” Journal of Youth Studies, volume 8, number 2, pp. 131–149.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1080/13676260500149238, accessed 22 October 2015.

A. Kant, 2014. “Experiencing pregnancy: Negotiating cultural and biomedical knowledge,” Sociological Bulletin, volume 63, number 2, pp. 247–262.

K. Keniston, 2004. “The four digital divides,” In: K. Keniston and D. Kumar (editors). IT experience in India: Bridging the digital divide. Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Sage, pp. 11–36.

J. Kumar, 2014. “Bihar panchayat bans jeans and mobiles for girls,” Economic Times, at http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/bihar-panchayat-bans-jeans-and-mobiles-for-girls/, accessed 22 October 2015.

N. Kumar and R. Anderson, 2015. “Mobile phones for maternal health in rural India,” CHI ’15: Proceedings of the 33rd Annual ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 427–436.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1145/2702123.2702258, accessed 22 October 2015.

N. Kumar and T.S. Parikh, 2013. “Mobiles, music, and materiality,” CHI ’13: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 2,863–2,872.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1145/2470654.2481396, accessed 22 October 2015.

N. Kumar and N. Rangaswamy, 2013. “The mobile media actor-network in urban India,” CHI ’13: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 1,989–1,998.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1145/2470654.2466263, accessed 22 October 2015.

B. Latour, 2005. Reassembling the social: An introduction to actor-network-theory. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

M. Muller, 2011. “Feminism asks the ‘who’ questions in HCI,” Interacting with Computers, volume 23, number 5, pp. 447–449.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1016/j.intcom.2011.02.001, accessed 22 October 2015.

E. Oreglia and K. Kitner, 2013. “The ‘consumption junction’ of ICT in emerging markets: An ethnography of middlemen,” Ethnographic Praxis in Industry Conference, volume 2013, number 1, pp. 172–185.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1111/j.1559-8918.2013.00016.x, accessed 22 October 2015.

T.S. Parikh and K. Ghosh, 2006. “Understanding and designing for intermediated information tasks in India,” Pervasive Computing, volume 5, number 2, pp. 32–39.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1109/MPRV.2006.41, accessed 22 October 2015.

A. Peshkin, 1988. “In search of subjectivity — one’s own,” Educational Researcher, volume 17, number 7, pp. 17–21.
doi: http://doi.org/10.3102/0013189X017007017, accessed 22 October 2015.

N. Sambasivan, E. Cutrell, K. Toyama, and B. Nardi, 2010. “Intermediated technology use in developing communities,” CHI ’10: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 2,583–2,592.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1145/1753326.1753718, accessed 22 October 2015.

G. Shroff and M. Kam, 2011. “Towards a design model for women’s empowerment in the developing world,” CHI ’11: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 2,867–2,876.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1145/1978942.1979368, accessed 22 October 2015.

M. Song and D. Parker, 1995. “Commonality, difference and the dynamics of disclosure in in-depth interviewing,” Sociology, volume 29, number 2, pp. 241–256.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1177/0038038595029002004, accessed 22 October 2015.

J. Tacchi, K. Kitner, and K. Crawford, 2012. “Meaningful mobility: Gender, development and mobile phones,” Feminist Media Studies, volume 12, number 4, pp. 528–537.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1080/14680777.2012.741869, accessed 22 October 2015.

A. Taylor, 2011. “Out there,” CHI ’11: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 685–694.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1145/1978942.1979042, accessed 22 October 2015.

S. Tenhunen, 2008. “Mobile technology in the village: ICTs, culture, and social logistics in India,” Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, volume 14, number 3, pp. 515–534.
doi: http://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9655.2008.00515.x, accessed 22 October 2015.

 


Editorial history

Received 2 October 2015; accepted 22 October 2015.


Copyright © 2015, First Monday.
Copyright © 2015, Neha Kumar. All Rights Reserved.

The gender-technology divide or perceptions of non-use?
by Neha Kumar.
First Monday, Volume 20, Number 11 - 2 November 2015
http://firstmonday.org/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/6300/5133
doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.5210/fm.v20i11.6300





A Great Cities Initiative of the University of Illinois at Chicago University Library.

© First Monday, 1995-2017. ISSN 1396-0466.