This paper examines trends in the political marginalisation of women in KwaZulu-Natal between 1994 and 2004. South Africa's political representation of women has been increasing significantly since 1994. KwaZulu-Natal has just over 25% female representation in provincial governance, an enviable percentage compared to world figures. This paper examines the quality of that representation to discover how effectively this 25% has addressed the concerns of the region's women, especially rural African women, and what sociocultural notions have hampered their political participation and thus escalated their socioeconomic marginalisation. Looking at primary and secondary data from interviews with women in rural KwaZulu-Natal and in public decision-making structures, and with female and male political science students at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, the paper finds that politics is still masculinised, and poverty by implication remains feminised.