Date of Graduation

Fall 12-6-2011

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


International Studies

First Advisor

Dr. Karen Bouwer


This thesis explores the challenges facing Beninese women and girls in their pursuit of formal education, as well as the factors supporting their endeavors. It examines the results of interviews performed with Beninese women from varying socioeconomic backgrounds and addresses the issue of access to formal education from their point of view as well. The study findings point to the multi-faceted nature of this problem, which is rooted in various aspects of underdevelopment including misogynistic abuse, poverty, unemployment and misplaced family priorities as well as misallocation of public funds and poor classroom evaluation. It contributes to an existing body of research regarding steps towards the intellectual empowerment of women in Benin.