Using data and case study evidence gathered from fieldwork in eastern Sri Lanka during 1998–99, this paper fleshes out the particular situation of Sinhala female-heads. What conflict and non-conflict factors lead to female-headship? The evidence supports the contention that the patriarchal households may be adjusting to factors beyond the ethnic conflict. It is important to highlight the complex and dynamic relationships to understand the economic opportunities exploited by female-heads to maintain their economic security. However, there is also a social cost to this. Female-heads’ participation in the labour market is linked to the support they receive from kin and community structures. However, there is also a social cost to this, as they perceive suchreliance requires certain gendered standards of behaviour.
- Economic Deprivation