This book is a critical resource for understanding the relationship between gender, social policy and women’s activism in Latin America, with specific reference to Chile. Latin America’s mother-centered kinship system makes it an ideal field in which to study motherhood and maternalism—the ways in which motherhood becomes a public policy issue. As maternalism embraces and enhances gender differences, it has been criticized for deepening gender inequalities. Yet invoking motherhood continues to offer an effective strategy for advancing women’s living conditions and rights, and for women themselves to be present in the public sphere. In analyzing these important relationships, the contributors to this volume discuss maternal health, sexual and reproductive rights, labor programs, paid employment, women miners’ unionization, housing policies, environmental suffering, and LGBTQ intimate partner violence.
Alejandra Ramm is Associate Professor of Sociology at the Universidad de Valparaíso and Associate Researcher at the Social Sciences Research Institute (ICSO) at the Universidad Diego Portales (UDP), Chile.
Jasmine Gideon is Senior Lecturer in Development Studies at Birkbeck, University of London, UK.