A matrix of violences: the political economy of violences against Mayan women in Guatemala’s Northern Transversal Strip

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Abstract

Following the signing of Guatemala’s 1996 Peace Accords, which brought an end to 36 years of conflict culminating in a genocide against Mayan communities, violences have persisted at alarming rates. Research has noted a high number of reports of violences against women and femicide, highlighting legal battles and challenges to address this issue. This article aims to make an empirical contribution, in that it explores the political economic dimensions of violences against women in predominantly Maya Q’eqchi’ communities in Guatemala’s development corridor, the Northern Transversal Strip region. Furthermore, the article emphasizes how women community leaders have linked violences against women in the contemporary context to the historical gendered violences of colonialism and armed conflict, as well the postwar extractivist development model and related ecological violences, particularly in relation to palm oil. Drawing on qualitative research and expanding on “continuum” theoretical approaches, the article concludes by suggesting that violences against women in postwar Guatemala can be understood as existing within an intersectional matrix, illustrating the dynamics of continuity and change. Violences against women are shaped by political, economic, historical, and social factors, which in turn shape how women organize to resist and address the violences against them in the Northern Transversal Strip region.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-24
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Feminist Journal of Politics
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 5 Oct 2021

Keywords

  • Guatemala
  • Violences against women
  • development
  • feminist political economy
  • palm oil
  • Political Science and International Relations
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Gender Studies
  • Sociology and Political Science

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