A comparative study on women empowerment in urban and rural setting in Tamil Nadu

P. Saravanakumar, J. Elizabeth Varakumari


Background: Women empowerment is vital for decision making on nutrition, health-seeking, family planning and economic issues for the family as a whole. In reality, there is prevalence of unequal gender norms among the women in India in urban and rural area. The objective of the study was to compare the empowerment of women in urban and rural setting in Tamil Nadu.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in Nandivaram (RHTC) and Shenoy Nagar (UHTC) attached to Government Kilpauk Medical College among 200 married women of age 15-49 years with a semi-structured questionnaire during June 2018. Data was entered and analyzed in SPSS 16. Chi Square test and logistic regression was used for statistical analysis.

Results: Mean age in rural group was 26.74±6.45 years and 30.4±7.35 in urban. Illiterates were 27% in rural and 14% in urban. About 67% were homemakers in rural vs. 43% in urban. About 33% were BPL in rural vs. 21% in urban. Decision making regarding household decisions, about73% in rural vs. 87% urban had participated. In health seeking behavior, 77 % in rural had no say while only 45% in urban. For Family planning, 33% in rural vs. 74% in urban had decision making which were statistically significant. Only 33% contributed to family income in rural vs. 47% in urban.

Conclusions: Women empowerment is better in urban setting than rural setting. There is a strong need to create awareness and training in rural setting for better productive life.


Women empowerment, Rural, Urban, Tamil Nadu

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