Decent exposure: Young women mixing schooling and sharpness in Lira city

Sharon Acio Enon, Dorah Adoch, Vicky Alum, Ann Gumkit Parlaker, Ben Jones, Laury Ocen, James Opolo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We examine ‘exposure’ as a new subjectivity among young women in Lira City in northern Uganda. Socialising with men in bars, ‘managing’ boyfriends, being a good Christian wife, are all ways of mixing experiences of formal education with the challenges of navigating a way forward in the complex and evolving context of Lira City. Young women strive to acquire skills of hustling, networking and navigating social situations, which they begin to develop during their time in school and university. They continue to cultivate these skills as they move into early adulthood. Lira City is a landscape where new government legislation, the advocacy work of NGOs, the mass expansion of Uganda’s education system, and unstable marriages, create new opportunities as well as challenges for young women. Young women think through these opportunities and challenges by thinking about what it means to be ‘exposed’ and acting in relation to these thoughts.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCompare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education
Early online date1 Feb 2024
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 1 Feb 2024


  • anthropology
  • auto-ethnography
  • Africa
  • gender
  • subjectivity
  • Anthropology

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