Battling Inequality

The attached poem examines gender inequalities within the Dinka people of South Sudan, which have long been evident throughout various aspects of their lives. From the time of childbirth, expectations prioritized male children, and wives often suffered due to their inability to bear sons. Additionally, women were denied agency when it came to choosing their life partner, while men were free to pursue women they deemed as suitable wives. The wedding ceremonies themselves further exemplified gender inequality, with traditional roles assigned to men and women perpetuating gender-based expectations and restrictions. However, the conflict and diaspora that have affected the community have contributed to significant changes. Women are pursuing education, securing scholarships, and serving as teachers, while men are increasingly participating in household duties such as cooking, reflecting an acceptance of shared responsibilities. Women are occupying influential leadership positions in community youth organizations, contributing to decision-making processes. While much work remains to achieve true gender equality, these advancements are promising for a more equitable future for the Dinka people of South Sudan.

Battling Inequality 

In South Sudan, the Dinka people’s plight,

Gender inequality casts a shadow, a fight.

From birth to death, it taints their way,

A struggle for equality in the light of day.


Newborns’ arrival reveals their fate,

Expectations set, for boys they await.

A wife not birthing a son may face strife,

Conflict or another spouse, unfair in life.


Prayers and sacrifices to gods above,

For a baby boy, they fervently do love.

But the desire for a girl remains unseen,

Continuing the imbalance, so unjust, so mean.


Girls have no agency, no say in their choice,

Men roam free, searching for a voice.

Young women kidnapped to be wed,

Forced into marriage, their rights left for dead.


Weddings, a reflection of inequality’s sting,

Two bulls slaughtered, one for each wing.

But men hold the organs, women a select few,

Traditional roles deepen the divide, that’s true.


Men stay away from the kitchen’s call,

Women fall ill, the family won’t eat at all.

Another female must come to their aid,

A division of duties, an unfair trade.


Yet amidst the struggle, a glimmer of hope,

The diaspora sparks change, helps them cope.

Women pursue education, scholarships in hand,

Breaking traditional taboos, a bold stand.


Men share household chores, accept the task,

Cooking and caring, a responsibility they bask.

Women lead in youth organizations, a voice,

Making decisions, a chance to rejoice.


Generations plagued by inequality’s sting,

But progress is made, a promising spring.

Though hurdles remain to achieve true parity,

A brighter future awaits, a world of equity.