This study investigates factors which influence limited participation in the development process by women in South Africa’s rural areas. The influence of government development policy, education and cultural values on rural women was sought and investigated in this study. The results suggest that most women in rural areas are illiterate. They lack initiatives, innovations and self-reliance attitudes. Women in rural areas are isolated, confined and marginalized through the non-interactive government policies on rural areas. These symptoms reflect a lack of structured development strategy to create needed opportunities in these areas. As a result, there is a high rate of unemployment, because the present development policy clearly has failed to enhance the welfare of most rural women in the country.

Note on the Author

M. Kongolo, Department of Economics, Vista University, Soweto Campus, South Africa

O.O. Bamgose, MA student