Dilemmas of Difference: Indigenous Women and the Limits of Postcolonial Development Policy

Dilemmas of Difference: Indigenous Women and the Limits of Postcolonial Development Policy

by Sarah A. Radcliffe

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In Dilemmas of Difference Sarah A. Radcliffe explores the relationship of rural indigenous women in Ecuador to the development policies and actors that are ostensibly there to help ameliorate social and economic inequality. Radcliffe finds that development policies’s inability to recognize and reckon with the legacies of colonialism reinforces long-standing social hierarchies, thereby reproducing the very poverty and disempowerment they are there to solve. This ineffectiveness results from failures to acknowledge the local population's diversity and a lack of accounting for the complex intersections of gender, race, ethnicity, class, and geography. As a result, projects often fail to match beneficiaries' needs, certain groups are made invisible, and indigenous women become excluded from positions of authority. Drawing from a mix of ethnographic fieldwork and postcolonial and social theory, Radcliffe centers the perspectives of indigenous women to show how they craft practices and epistemologies that critique ineffective development methods, inform their political agendas, and shape their strategic interventions in public policy debates. 

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780822375029
Publisher: Duke University Press
Publication date: 10/23/2015
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 384
File size: 4 MB

About the Author

Sarah A. Radcliffe is Professor of Latin American Geography at the University of Cambridge and coauthor of Indigenous Development in the Andes: Culture, Power, and Transnationalism, also published by Duke University Press. 

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments  ix

Introduction. Development and Social Heterogeneity  1

1. Postcolonial Intersectionality and the Colonial Present  37

2. The Daily Grind: Ethnic Topographies of Labor, Racism, and Abandonment  75

Interlude I  121

3. Crumbs from the Table: Participation, Organization, and Indigenous Women  125

4. Politics, Statistics, and Affect: "Indigenous Women in Development" Policy  157

Interlude II  189

5. Women, Biopolitics, and Interculturalism: Ethnic Politics and Gendered Contradictions  193

6. From Development to Citizenship: Rights, Voice, and Citizenship Practices  225

7. Postcolonial Heterogeneity: Sumak Kawsay and Decolonizing Social Difference  257

Notes  291

Glossary 295

Bibliography  329

Index  359

What People are Saying About This

Silent Violence: Food, Famine, and Peasantry in Northern Nigeria - Michael J. Watts

"Dilemmas of Difference is an important contribution to postcolonial studies and provides a critical understanding of the durability and malleability of particular development categories and concepts as they are deployed in the development practice. Deeply attentive to the subtleties and contradiction of forms of essentialism, Sarah A. Radcliffe's arguments resonate widely not only in Latin America but across large parts of the Global South. This book will speak to audiences across the social sciences and humanities, both in and outside of Latin America."

Now We Are Citizens: Indigenous Politics in Postmulticultural Bolivia - Nancy Grey Postero

"Sarah A. Radcliffe's wonderful new book shows how race, class, and gender continue to structure inequalities in the postcolonial present. Based on innovative collaborations with indigenous women's organizations in Ecuador, this book is an important intervention into the politics of knowledge. She brings us the voices of indigenous women—the supposed beneficiaries of development—who bring their own situated knowledge to bear to critique both NGO development projects and the alternative model of vivir bien, creating new forms of citizenship in the process."

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