Encountering Latin American and Caribbean feminisms

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Signs, ISSN: 1545-6943, Vol: 28, Issue: 2, Page: 537-579

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10.1086/342589; 10.1590/s0104-026x2003000200013.; 10.1086/342589.
Alvarez, Sonia E; Friedman, Elisabeth Jay; Beckman, Ericka; Blackwell, Maylei; Chinchilla, Norma Stoltz; Lebon, Nathalie; Navarro, Marysa; Tobar, Marcela Ríos
University of Chicago Press
Social Sciences; Arts and Humanities; feminist activism; Latin American feminist movements; feminist conferences; transnational feminisms; Political Science
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This article examines the Latin American and Caribbean Feminist Encuentros as critical transnational sites for the collective re-imagining of feminist politics in the region. Paying special attention to the most recent regional gathering, held in Juan Dolio, Dominican Republic in 1999, we analyze the major political and philosophical debates that have emerged during twenty years of Encuentros: 1) shifting conceptions of movement "autonomy" and feminisms' relationship to the larger women's movement and to other actors in civil and political society, the State, and international institutions; 2) controversies generated by the movements' recurrent "crises of inclusion" and "crises of expansion"; and 3) debates centered on differences, inequalities, and power imbalances among women, in general, and among feminists, in particular. While this essay explores how the Encuentros have marked feminist debates in the region, it also argues that they are, in themselves, productive transborder sites that not only reflect but also (re)shape Latin American and Caribbean feminist discourses and practices.