Disconnected from Discourse: Women's Radio Listening in Rural Samangan, Afghanistan
Finding and maintaining good access to information is one of the most important coping skills for many Afghans in insecure and rapidly shifting situations. Returning refugee populations face deeply rooted structural problems on returning to their villages: millions of landmines continue to litter the countryside, ethnic tension is high, and lawlessness afflicts civilian populations. Due to poor communication infrastructure, villages are often isolated and disconnected from the resources and information that flow into Kabul and other major urban centres. Many villages continue to rely on informal information structures or the radio for the majority of their news. Understanding women’s radio access and listening, particularly in economically depressed, remote areas of Afghanistan is an important step in understanding the impact and effectiveness of the investments being made in the media sector. This report outlines radio reception issues for very vulnerable women in an effort to support radio organizations in Afghanistan in their service delivery. The following study was conducted in a remote mountainous region of Samangan province, and focuses on understanding women’s media use in a poor Hazara village, using a quantitative survey of female heads of households, focus groups with women, girls, and men, semi-structured interviews, and observation as the main sources of its data.
Inter-University Committee on International Migration
Rosemarie Rogers Working Paper Series;27