Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Womens Studies

Major Professor

Michelle Hughes-Miller


Diaspora, global feminism, indigenous women, Liberia, truth commission, voice


The purpose of my research is to analyze the Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission (LTRC) lack of attention towards accessing rural Liberian women's voices as opposed to privileged Liberian women residing in urban and Diaspora spaces. By analyzing the LTRC and its Final Report from a critical global feminist perspective, I was able to not only illuminate, but bring a spotlight over issues including access, privilege, and multicultural insensitivity related to Liberia's indigenous tribal cultures. Liberia, being a country founded by American colonials, is socially constructed by Western ideological norms. As Western ideology is mainly normalized and enforced by the privileged class, Americo-Liberians, the LTRC and Final Report were also constructed within Western constructions.

Given Liberia's historical colonial ties to the United States and its current relations to the global community, the LTRC decided to include Liberians in the Diaspora to its focus group. The Diaspora, also referred to as Liberia's 16th county, is made up of privileged Liberians displaced in overseas countries including the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada. As with any progress, fashion, or business, attention is given to the newest, most profitable merchandise, or in the case of the LTRC, population. I hypothesized, and feared, that the LTRC did not provide indigenous Liberian women, many of whom reside in rural Liberia, equal access and effort as they did privileged Liberian women residing in urban and Diaspora spaces. To prove this, I conduct a feminist content analysis of the LTRC Final Report, recorded public testimonies which are available on the LTRC website ( and quantitative data collected and processed by, Benetech, a human rights statistics organization based out of Minnesota... a city which happens to be home to the highest number of Diaspora Liberians in the world. After conducting my investigation, I was able to conclude my thesis with reasons as to why underprivileged women's voices in Liberian should be included in doctrine, like the LTRC, and suggest ways to improve methods like the LTRC to ensure indigenous women's voices are fairly accessed and heard.