Reproducers reproduced : socio-legal regulation of sexuality and fertility among adolescent girls in Kenya
This study analyses socio-legal issues pertaining to sexuality and reproduction within the context of the realities and lives of Kenyan women and in particular, Kenyan adolescent girls. The study explores the regulatory mechanisms relating to adolescent sexuality and fertility, and examines how these have been historically constructed both to limit and to open up the knowledge and choices of adolescent girls regarding their sexuality and reproduction. It examines the historical nature of the actors and the regulatory mechanisms (within the specific contexts), how these define the status of women within their families and communities, and their ability to regulate their sexuality and fertility. It unearths the intricate nature of the interrelationship between the actors and regulatory mechanisms, and develops a framework of analysis for this task. The study argues that regulation of adolescent sexuality and fertility is complex and multi-dimensional. Thus efforts at regulation must consider the nature of sexuality, its construction, the gender relationships, and the power relationships between the social actors. The study concludes that more qualitative studies that focus on the regulation of adolescent sexuality and fertility, the plural nature of law and its relationship with other non-legal forms of social regulation are crucial, if the complexity of this process is to be better understood.