Advertisement

Latin America: A Fertile Ground for Maternalism

  • Alejandra RammEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Studies of the Americas book series (STAM)

Abstract

At the turn of the twentieth century, social policies in Latin America emerged and were shaped by maternalist views. Similarly, early feminist movements appealed to the idea that motherhood conferred superior moral qualities on women in order to demand access to political rights. Latin America is a mother-centered region due to colonial legacies, the long-lasting influence of the Catholic Church, and ongoing prevalence of a blood-based kinship system. Contrary to feminist predictions, today we are witnessing a comeback of motherhood, as mothering is being perceived as a more valuable but also a much more demanding task. This chapter argues that Latin America is a fertile ground for this comeback of motherhood, and that in spite of maternalism’s essentialism, it should not be discarded by feminist schools of thought and forces. In conservative contexts, maternalism could be one of the few legitimate ways for women to enter the public sphere. This chapter reflects both on historical research and on scholarship regarding gender in Latin America, and suggests the case of Chile as particularly relevant to understanding the historical and current workings of maternalism in a variety of social policies.

References

  1. Angulo-Novoa, Alejandro. 1980. The Family in Colombia. In The Family in Latin America, ed. Man Singh Das and Clinton J. Jesser, 84–105. New Delhi: Vikas Publishing House.Google Scholar
  2. Arancibia Obrador, María José, and Pablo Cornejo Aguilera. 2013. El Derecho de familia en Chile. Evolución y nuevos desafíos. Revista Ius et Praxis 20 (1): 279–318.Google Scholar
  3. Auyero, Javier. 2012. Patients of the State: The Politics of Waiting in Argentina. Durham: Duke University Press.Google Scholar
  4. Baert, Patrick. 1992. Time, Self and Social Being: Temporality within a Sociological Context. Aldershot: Avebury.Google Scholar
  5. Borzutzky, Silvia. 2002. Vital Connections: Politics, Social Security, and Inequality in Chile. Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press.Google Scholar
  6. Bridges, Julian C. 1980. The Mexican Family. In The Family in Latin America, ed. Man Singh Das and Clinton J. Jesser, 295–334. New Delhi: Vikas.Google Scholar
  7. Chaney, Elsa M. 1983. Supermadre: la mujer dentro de la política en América Latina. México, DF: Fondo de Cultura Económica. [Original Edition. Supermadre: Women in Politics in Latin America (1979). The University of Texas Press].Google Scholar
  8. Chant, Sylvia. 1997. Women-Headed Households: Diversity and Dynamics in the Developing World. Basingstoke: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  9. ———. 2010. Towards a (Re)conceptualisation of the ‘Feminisation of Poverty’: Reflections on Gender-Differentiated Poverty from The Gambia, Philippines and Costa Rica. In The International Handbook of Gender and Poverty: Concepts, Research, Policy, ed. Sylvia Chant, 111–122. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.Google Scholar
  10. Chen, Chao-ju. 2016. Compulsory Motherhood Challenged and Remade in the Name of Choice: Framing the Right to Choose Under Old and New Maternalism. In Legal Thoughts between the East and the West in the Multilevel Legal Order, ed. Chang-fa Lo, Nigel N.T. Li, and Tsai-yu Lin, 177–197. Singapore: Springer.Google Scholar
  11. Christie, Jane L. 2016. Negotiating Gendered Discourses: Michelle Bachelet and Cristina Fernández de Kirchner. Lanham: Lexington Books.Google Scholar
  12. Connell, Raewyn. 2009. Gender: In World Perspective. 2nd ed. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  13. Cooper, Nicola J. 2009. Gendering the Colonial Enterprise: La Mère-Patrie and Maternalism in France and French Indochina. In Empires and Boundaries: Rethinking Race, Class, and Gender in Colonial Settings, ed. Harald Fischer-Tiné and Susanne Gehrmann. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  14. Esping-Andersen, Gøsta. 2016. Families in the 21st Century. Stockholm: SNS Förlag.Google Scholar
  15. Fonseca, Claudia. 1991. Spouses, Siblings and Sex-Linked Bonding: A Look at Kinship Organization in a Brazilian Slum. In Family, Household and Gender Relations in Latin America, ed. Elizabeth Jelin, 133–160. London: Kegan Paul.Google Scholar
  16. Franceschet, Susan, Jennifer M. Piscopo, and Gwynn Thomas. 2015. Supermadres, Maternal Legacies and Women’s Political Participation in Contemporary Latin America. Journal of Latin American Studies 48: 1–32.  https://doi.org/10.1017/S0022216X15000814.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Freeman, Hadley. 2016. Attachment Parenting: The Best Way to Raise a Child – or Maternal Masochism? The Guardian, 30 July, Family. https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/jul/30/attachment-parenting-best-way-raise-child-or-maternal-masochism.
  18. Freyre, Gilberto. 2010. Casa-Grande y Senzala: La Formación de la Familia Brasileña en un Régimen de Economía Patriarcal. Madrid: Marcial Pons. [Original Edition, 1933].Google Scholar
  19. González de la Rocha, Mercedes. 1994. The Resources of Poverty: Women and Survival in a Mexican City. Cambridge MA: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  20. Gordon, Linda. 1990. The New Feminist Scholarship on the Welfare State. In Women, the State, and Welfare, ed. Linda Gordon, 9–35. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press.Google Scholar
  21. Haggard, Stephan, and Robert R. Kaufman. 2008. Development, Democracy, and Welfare States: Latin America, East Asia, and Eastern Europe. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  22. Herrera, M. Soledad, and Eduardo Valenzuela. 2006. Matrimonios, Separaciones y Convivencias. In El Eslabón Perdido: Familia, Modernización y Bienestar en Chile, ed. J. Samuel Valenzuela, Eugenio Tironi, and Timothy R. Scully c.s.c., 225–263. Santiago de Chile: Taurus.Google Scholar
  23. Hobson, Barbara. 1993. Feminist Strategies and Gendered Discourses in Welfare States: Married Women’s Right to Work in the United States and Sweden. In Mothers of a New World: Maternalist Politics and the Origins of Welfare States, ed. Seth Koven and Sonya Michel, 396–429. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  24. Hurtig, Janise, Rosario Montoya, and Lessie Jo Frazier. 2002. Introduction. In Gender’s Place: Feminist Anthropologies of Latin America, 1–18. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  25. Illanes, María Angélica, and Manuel Riesco. 2007. Developmentalism and Social Change in Chile. In Latin America: A New Developmental Welfare State Model in the Making? ed. Manuel Riesco, 378–424. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  26. Kaplan, Temma. 1982. Female Consciousness and Collective Action: The Case of Barcelona, 1910–1918. Signs 7 (3): 545–566.Google Scholar
  27. Klausen, Susanne M. 2004. Race, Maternity, and the Politics of Birth Control in South Africa, 1910–39. London: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  28. Koven, Seth, and Sonya Michel. 1993. Introduction: “Mother Worlds”. In Mothers of a New World: Maternalist Politics and the Origins of Welfare States, ed. Seth Koven and Sonya Michel, 1–42. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  29. Lavrin, Asunción. 2005. Mujeres, Feminismo y Cambio Social en Argentina, Chile y Uruguay 1890–1940. Translated ed. Santiago de Chile: Centro de Investigaciones Barros Arana. [Original Edition, Lavrin, A. 1996. Women, Feminism and Social Change in Argentina, Chile and Uruguay 1890–1940. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press].Google Scholar
  30. Lomnitz, Larissa Adler. 1977. Networks and Marginality: Life in a Mexican Shantytown. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  31. Lomnitz, Larissa, and Marisol Pérez-Lizaur. 1984. Dynastic Growth and Survival Strategies: The Solidarity of Mexican Grand-Families. In Kinship Ideology and Practice in Latin America, ed. Raymond T. Smith, 183–195. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press.Google Scholar
  32. Melhuus, Marit. 1996. Power, Value and the Ambiguous Meanings of Gender. In Machos, Mistresses, Madonnas: Contesting the Power of Latin American Gender Imagery, ed. Marit Melhuus and Kristi Anne Stølen, 230–259. London: Verso.Google Scholar
  33. Mellafe, Rolando. 2004. Historia social de Chile y América. 4th ed. Santiago de Chile: Universitaria.Google Scholar
  34. Meruane, Lina. 2015. Contra los hijos. México, DF: Tumbona.Google Scholar
  35. Michel, Sonya. 2012. Maternalism and Beyond. In Maternalism Reconsidered: Motherhood, Welfare and Social Policy in the Twentieth Century, ed. Marian van der Klein, Rebecca Jo Plant, Nichole Sanders, and Lori R. Weintrob, 22–37. New York: Berghahn.Google Scholar
  36. Molyneux, Maxine. 2003. Women’s Movements in International Perspective: Latin America and Beyond. London: Institute of Latin American Studies.Google Scholar
  37. ———. 2006. Mothers at the Service of the New Poverty Agenda: PROGRESA/Oportunidades, Mexico’s Conditional Transfer Programme. Journal of Social Policy and Administration 40 (4): 425–449.Google Scholar
  38. ———. 2007. Change and Continuity in Social Protection in Latin America: Mothers at the Service of the State? In Gender and Development Programme Paper, United Nations Research Institute for Social Development, Geneva.Google Scholar
  39. ———. 2008. The ‘Neoliberal Turn’ and the New Social Policy in Latin America: How Neoliberal, How New? Development and Change 39 (5): 775–797.Google Scholar
  40. Montecino, Sonia. 2010. Madres y huachos: Alegorías del mestizaje chileno. 5th ed. Santiago de Chile: Catalonia.Google Scholar
  41. Montoya, Rosario. 2002. Women’s Sexuality, Knowledge, and Agency in Rural Nicaragua. In Gender’s Place: Feminist Anthropologies of Latin America, ed. Rosario Montoya, Lessie Jo Frazier, and Janise Hurtig, 65–88. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  42. Morandé, Pedro. 1987. Cultura y modernización en América Latina: Ensayo sociológico acerca de la crisis del desarrollismo y su superación. Madrid: Encuentro.Google Scholar
  43. Orloff, Ann. 1996. Gender in the Welfare State. Annual Review of Sociology 22: 51–78.Google Scholar
  44. Palma, Julieta, and Jacqueline Scott. 2018. The Implications of Changing Living Arrangements for Intergenerational Relations in Chile. Contemporary Social Science.  https://doi.org/10.1080/21582041.2018.1460487.
  45. Pedersen, Susan. 1993. Catholicism, Feminism, and the Politics of the Family during the Late Third Republic. In Mothers of a New World: Maternalist Politics and the Origins of Welfare States, ed. Seth Koven and Sonya Michel, 246–276. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  46. Plant, Rebecca Jo, and Marian van der Klein. 2012. Introduction: A New Generation of Scholars on Maternalism. In Maternalism Reconsidered: Motherhood, Welfare and Social Policy in the Twentieth Century, ed. Marian van der Klein, Rebecca Jo Plant, Nichole Sanders, and Lori R. Weintrob, 1–21. New York: Berghahn.Google Scholar
  47. PNUD. 2010. Desarrollo humano en Chile. Género: los desafíos de la igualdad. Santiago de Chile: PNUD.Google Scholar
  48. Pollak-Eltz, Angelina. 1980. The Family in Venezuela. In The Family in Latin America, ed. Man Singh Das and Clinton J. Jesser, 12–45. New Delhi: Vikas.Google Scholar
  49. Pollitt, Katha. 2012. Attachment Parenting: More Guilt for Mothers. The Guardian, 18 May, Opinion. https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2012/may/18/attachment-parenting-guilt-mothers.Google Scholar
  50. Power, Margaret. 2008. La mujer de derecha: el poder femenino y la lucha contra Salvador Allende, 1964–1973. Translated by María Teresa Escobar. Santiago de Chile: Centro de Investigación Barros Arana. [Original Edition. Right-Wing Women in Chile: Feminine Power and the Struggle against Allende, 1964–1973 (2002)].Google Scholar
  51. Pribble, Jennifer. 2006. Women and Welfare: The Politics of Coping with New Social Risks in Chile and Uruguay. Latin American Research Review 41 (2): 84–111.  https://doi.org/10.1353/lar.2006.0028.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Raczynski, Dagmar, and Claudia Serrano. 1985. Vivir la Pobreza: Testimonios de Mujeres. Santiago de Chile: Cieplan.Google Scholar
  53. Ragin, Charles. 1994. Constructing Social Research: The Unity and Diversity of Method. Thousand Oaks, CA: Pine Forge Press.Google Scholar
  54. Ramm, Alejandra. 2013. Unmarried Cohabitation among Deprived Families in Chile. PhD thesis, University of Cambridge.Google Scholar
  55. ———. 2015. Género, academia y chilenidad: el viaje de una profesora universitaria chilena. In Rupturas e identidades: cuestionando la Nación y la Academia desde la etnia y el género, ed. Angela Boitano and Alejandra Ramm, 67–95. Santiago de Chile: RIL.Google Scholar
  56. Rosemblatt, Karin Alejandra. 2000. Gendered Compromises: Political Cultures and the State in Chile, 1920–1950. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.Google Scholar
  57. Skocpol, Theda. 1995. Protecting Soldiers and Mothers: The Political Origins of Social Policy in the United States. Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  58. Smith, Raymond T. 1996a. Hierarchy and the Dual Marriage System in West Indian Society. In The Matrifocal Family: Power, Pluralism, and Politics, ed. Raymond T. Smith, 59–80. New York: Routledge. [Original Edition, 1987].Google Scholar
  59. ———. 1996b. The Matrifocal Family. In The Matrifocal Family: Power, Pluralism, and Politics, ed. Raymond T. Smith, 39–57. New York: Routledge. [Original Edition, 1973].Google Scholar
  60. Stevens, Evelyn P. 1979. Marianismo: The Other Face of Machismo. In Female and Male in Latin America: Essays, ed. Ann Pescatello, 89–101. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press.Google Scholar
  61. Tabbush, Constanza. 2010. Latin American Women´s Protection after Adjustment: A Feminist Critique of Conditional Cash Transfers in Chile and Argentina. Oxford Development Studies 38 (4): 437–459.Google Scholar
  62. Therborn, Göran. 2004. Between Sex and Power: Family in the World, 1900–2000. Oxon: Routledge.Google Scholar
  63. Thomas, Gwynn. 2011. Contesting Legitimacy in Chile: Familial Ideals, Citizenship, and Political Struggle, 1970–1990. University Park, PA: The Pennsylvania State University.Google Scholar
  64. Thumala, María Angélica. 2007. Riqueza y Piedad: El Catolicismo de la Élite Económica Chilena. Santiago de Chile: Random House Mondadori.Google Scholar
  65. Tinsman, Heidi. 2002. Partners in Conflict: The Politics of Gender, Sexuality, and Labor in the Chilean Agrarian Reform, 1950–1973. Durham: Duke University Press.Google Scholar
  66. Valdés, Teresa. 2013. Acción Política de Mujeres 1990–2006: Institucionalizando la Equidad de Género. In Desigualdad en Chile: La Continua Relevancia del Género, ed. Claudia Mora, 243–274. Santiago de Chile: Ediciones Universidad Alberto Hurtado.Google Scholar
  67. Valdés, Ximena, Rosa Saavedra, Carmen Gloria Godoy, Tania Rioja, and Émilie Raymond. 2005. Entre la Reinvención y la Tradición Selectiva: Familia, Conyugalidad, Parentalidad y Sujeto en Santiago de Chile. In Familia y Vida Privada: ¿Transformaciones, Tensiones, Resistencias o Nuevos Sentidos? ed. Ximena Valdés and Teresa Valdés, 163–213. Santiago de Chile: FLACSO.Google Scholar
  68. Valdés, Ximena, Pamela Caro, Rosa Saavedra, Carmen Gloria Godoy, Tania Rioja, and Émilie Raymond. 2006. Modelos Familiares Emergentes o Fractura del Modelo Tradicional. In Puertas Adentro: Femenino y Masculino en la Familia Contemporánea, ed. Ximena Valdés, Christine Castelain-Meunier, and Margarita Palacios, 11–103. Santiago de Chile: LOM.Google Scholar
  69. Vergara, Pilar. 1990. Políticas Hacia la Extrema Pobreza en Chile 1973–1988. Santiago de Chile: FLACSO.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SociologyUniversity of ValparaísoValparaísoChile

Personalised recommendations