Accepted paper:

Gendered instrumentalism in Latin American health policy


Jasmine Gideon (Birkbeck College)

Paper short abstract:

The paper considers why despite the adoption of 'gender' within international development policy gendered inequalities in health continue and women's health continues to be reduced to reproductive health issues.

Paper long abstract:

At first glance it would appear that important gains have been made for promoting gender equitable health policies over the past decade - gender mainstreaming discourse is widely found in health policy documents and millions of pounds of development assistance are being channelled in to promoting women's reproductive health. At the same time, the recent shift in health policies towards the promotion of universal health coverage also offers potential benefits from a gender perspective in terms of promoting better access to health care services for women. Yet significant inequalities in health persist across Latin America, many of which are gendered and racialised. This paper therefore takes a critical look at the ways in which women's health has been promoted across Latin America over the past few decades and considers why these inequalities still persist despite the significant attention that is given to women's reproductive health issues in a development context.

panel P21
Challenging gendered instrumentalism in Latin American social policy?