Bridging Differences: Feminist Alliance Framing of Peruvian Women's Health Movement

Wednesday, July 16, 2014: 10:50 AM
Room: 413
Oral Presentation
Yin-zu CHEN , Department of Sociology, National Taipei University, New Taipei City, Taiwan
How do divergent social groups build and maintain their alliances for collective action is the central question in this paper. To explain the networking and cooperation between social movements groups or even different social movements the resources mobilization theory and the political process approach emphasized on the external impulse for alliance and coalition's building. Meanwhile the constructive perspective put attention on the interaction and subjective aspects of collective identity. However, the long term alliance between divergent social groups can not be explained without considering their different oppression experiences that make the communication in alliance difficult.

Emphasizing the role of life-world experiences that intermediate the contextual change and the we-ness construction in an alliance, I argue the long term alliance of divergent partners requires a permanent discursive “leveling” of different experiences among participants. To outline this argument, I study the experiences of Peruvian women's health movement from 1980 to 2000. The collaboration between women from different social classes – NGO-feminist and the grassroots women-- suffered tension and conflicts as their activities extend from self-help groups to medical institutions. From an intersectional perspective I analyze the experiences of both groups, and show the dynamic framing strategy of feminist NGOs to bridge these different experiences and to maintain their alliance with the grassroots women.