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Department 1

Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

Department 2

Latin American Studies


This issue is concerned with the salience of “popular feminism” as an analytic category for naming the myriad contemporary forms of gendered awareness and agency appearing among Latin America’s poor, working-class and racialized communities. Although we have an analytic agenda, our underlying concern here is with the politics of feminism—the construction of intersectional feminist praxes of gender, race, and economic justice and their relation to other projects for social justice. Our focus on popular feminism addresses the relationship between the subaltern subjectivities of marginalized women, their relation to feminist political agency, and the relation of both to mixed-gender efforts for social transformation on the broader left. Although it may be a current within them, popular feminism is distinct from the mass feminisms on the streets and online, the “feminisms of the 99 percent,” that have gripped the continent in recent years. It is the feminism of the poor and the subaltern, whose concerns for gender justice are inescapably co-constituted with their collective struggles for material, cultural and psychic survival against racist violence, land dispossession, environmental despoliation, and economic deprivation. One well-known contemporary example of self-identified popular feminism is that of the Consejo Cívico de Organizaciones Populares y Indígenas de Honduras (Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras—COPINH) whose founder, Berta Cáceres, a recipient of the Goldman Environmental Prize, was assassinated in 2016. Her assassination signaled retribution for COPINH’s hard-fought struggle against the rapacious capitalist, patriarchal, and colonizing practices destroying the land, rivers, and lives of the Lenca people. COPINH activists recently participated in an International Feminist Organizing School involving 200 grassroots feminists from around the world organized by the World – a popular feminist initiative March of Women, among others.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License




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