[Publication] Gender and sustainability – exploring ways of knowing – an ecohumanities perspective
An article written by Prof. Kumi Kato (CTR Director / Faculty of Tourism) was published in a tourism academic journal, the Journal of Sustainable Tourism.
Gender and sustainability – exploring ways of knowing – an ecohumanities perspective
Kumi Kato, Center for Tourism Research, Wakayama University, Wakayama, Japan
Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 2019
*Indexed in Scopus
This article takes up the challenge to apply critical enquiry to the interface between tourism and the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Applying a political ecology perspective, it examines the intersectionality of gender and (ocean) sustainability through a study of traditional women divers in Japan. Recognizing the SDGs as an agenda setting platform, this work engages with Goal 5: Gender Equality, and proposes that engaging with multiple and diverse ways of knowing is critical to promoting a sustainability agenda with gender perspectives an essential component. Employing ecohumanities as a methodological foundation, a qualitative study of women divers in Japan (ama) is reported with a focus on their particular relationship with the ocean. The study identifies the power of women’s knowledge in its inclusiveness, reciprocity and intuitive way of knowing. The example also shows that while tourism can be an important social and economic force, it can also devalue these core qualities as a result of the negative impacts caused by gender stereotypes. These findings indicate that the sustainability agenda can be advanced by challenging hierarchical systems of knowledge and valuing alternative ways of knowing, in this case, women’s knowledges.
Gender, sustainability, ecohumanities, knowledge, ways of knowing, Japan