“Who Will Use My Loom When I Am Gone?”: An Intersectional Analysis of Mapuche Women’s Progress in Twenty-First-Century Chile

  • Serena CosgroveEmail author
Part of the The Politics of Intersectionality book series (POLI)


According to many measures, Mapuche women have become empowered due to education, employment, and a demographic shift from the countryside to the major cities of Chile where their income-generating opportunities are greater. The Mapuche comprise 10% of the population of Chile and were only subjugated and incorporated into the Chilean nation as of the late 1800s. This chapter applies an intersectional and postcolonial framework to analyse a series of interviews with Petronila Catrileo, a Mapuche woman leader and elder, who worries that the achievements of the twenty-first century may pale when compared to the loss of Mapuche ways of life, connection to the land, and language in present-day Chile. This research is particularly important for Chile on a policy level where government offices serving women and indigenous people seldom interact, and when they do, they tend to reify differences between state employees and the people they serve. This chapter is also relevant for researchers and policymakers, more broadly, who often apply their own particular analytical lenses instead of an intersectional one when working with marginalized populations.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.International StudiesSeattle UniversitySeattleUSA

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