Because of their lack of education, women can be the most insidious opponents of precisely those programmes intended to improve their lives and those of their children. They are often not permitted to attend community training sessions and meetings, where their ignorance can embarrass community members in front of government officials or other agents of change. Their questions, left unanswered, turn into passive resistance to new practices.
[Developing countries] Despite significant efforts by many developing countries in the 1960s and 1970s, low enrolment and high female illiteracy remain major problems in Africa, South Asia and with pockets persisting in parts of Latin America (Bolivia, Haiti, Honduras and among native populations in the Andean countries) and in the Middle East and North Africa. Positive gains in education have been reversed by severe budgetary constraints owing to the recession problems of adjustment faced by many developing countries in 1987, especially those of Africa and Latin America. In Ghana, for instance, 60 percent of the female population neither read nor write and is very poorly educated.