Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 149, Issue 3, pp 689–706 | Cite as

Challenging Masculinity in CSR Disclosures: Silencing of Women’s Voices in Tanzania’s Mining Industry

  • Sarah Lauwo


This paper presents a feminist analysis of corporate social responsibility (CSR) in a male-dominated industry within a developing country context. It seeks to raise awareness of the silencing of women’s voices in CSR reports produced by mining companies in Tanzania. Tanzania is one of the poorest countries in Africa, and women are often marginalised in employment and social policy considerations. Drawing on work by Hélène Cixous, a post-structuralist/radical feminist scholar, the paper challenges the masculinity of CSR discourses that have repeatedly masked the voices and concerns of ‘other’ marginalised social groups, notably women. Using interpretative ethnographic case studies, the paper provides much-needed empirical evidence to show how gender imbalances remain prevalent in the Tanzanian mining sector. This evidence draws attention to the dynamics faced by many women working in or living around mining areas in Tanzania. The paper argues that CSR, a discourse enmeshed with the patriarchal logic of the contemporary capitalist system, is entangled with tensions, class conflicts and struggles which need to be unpacked and acknowledged. The paper considers the possibility of policy reforms in order to promote gender balance in the Tanzanian mining sector and create a platform for women’s concerns to be voiced.


Masculinity Feminism Cixous Corporate social responsibility Mining Tanzania 



The author is grateful to Steffen Bohm, Mary Philips, Melissa Tyler, anonymous reviewers and the editors for their support, encouragement and illuminating comments, which have been instrumental in the development of this paper. The funding provided by British Academy in partnership with the Society for the Advancement of Management Studies is deeply appreciated.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Essex Business SchoolUniversity of EssexColchesterUK

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