Women and Social Movements in Latin America: Power from Below

Synopsis

Women' grassroots activism in Latin America combines a commitment to basic survival for women and their children with a challenge to women' subordination to men. Women activists insist that issues such as rape, battering, and reproductive control cannot be divorced from women' concerns about housing, food, land, and medical care. This innovative, comparative study explores six cases of women' grassroots activism in Mexico, El Salvador, Brazil, and Chile. Lynn Stephen communicates the ideas, experiences, and perceptions of women who participate in collective action, while she explains the structural conditions and ideological discourses that set the context within which women act and interpret their experiences. She includes revealing interviews with activists, detailed histories of organizations and movements, and a theoretical discussion of gender, collective identity, and feminist anthropology and methods.