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Leadership From the Margins

Women and Civil Society Organizations in Argentina, Chile, and El Salvador

Serena Cosgrove

Publication Year: 2010

Leadership from the Margins describes and analyzes the unique leadership styles and challenges facing the women leaders of civil society organizations (CSOs) in Argentina, Chile, and El Salvador. Based on ethnographic research, Serena Cosgrove's analysis offers a nuanced account of the distinct struggles facing women, and how differences of class, political ideology, and ethnicity have informed their outlook and organizing strategies. Using a gendered lens, she reveals the power and potential of women's leadership to impact the direction of local, regional, and global development agendas.

Published by: Rutgers University Press

Contents

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pp. vii-

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-xi

This book would not have come to fruition if not for the candid feedback, encouragement, and persistence of Adi Hovav and Leslie Mitchner, my editors at Rutgers University Press. Both Adi and Leslie, as well as the entire Rutgers University Press team, were professional and thorough in their commitment to this project. I would also like to express my gratitude to the multiple anonymous reviewers who provided insights ...

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1. Women and Civil Society: Leadership in Latin America

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pp. 1-41

Traditionally men have benefited from gender hierarchies, occupying leadership positions across Latin American society, but a number of factors—political, economic, and historical—have aligned to expand leadership opportunities throughout the region in civil society organizations (CSOs) for women, especially women who have been marginalized by poverty, be it urban or rural, or by ethnicity. Many of these organizations— a number of which are led by women—are successfully achieving their goals and creating new hope ...

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2. The Emergence of Civil Society in Argentina, Chile, and El Salvador

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pp. 42-89

As limited as the historical record is about Latin American civil society organizing in general, and women’s organizing in particular, a few committed historians of Latin American history, such as José Bengoa, Inga Clendinnen, Donna Guy, and Aldo Lauria-Santiago, have reconstructed events formerly dedicated to the triumphs of Spanish conquerors and founding fathers to illuminate the protagonism of women, workers, and indigenous ...

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3. Argentina

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pp. 90-116

In Argentina the return to democracy in 1983 created conditions for rapid civil society growth, which has continued into the twenty-first century— expanding notions of human rights to include social, economic, and political rights; alleviating the effects of the economic crisis; ending domestic violence; keeping children in school; strengthening Christian base communities; and promoting community development. ...

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4. Chile

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pp. 117-154

Civil society in Chile—particularly the women’s movement—was in great part responsible for achieving an electoral transition from the dictatorship to democracy in 1990; since then, though, the women’s movement appears to have dissipated, divided by social class differences, accusations of cooptation, and competition over limited funding sources. However, new forms of civil society leadership are emerging on the edges of Chilean society. This chapter is about a renewal within ...

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5. El Salvador

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pp. 155-184

El Salvador is a small country of big contradictions: violence and poverty alongside commitment and hope. These same contradictions inform many of the efforts of Salvadoran civil society organizing in general and the women’s movement in particular. In El Salvador the women’s movement— comprised of a diversity of groups, organizations, and networks—remains determinedly committed to transforming the violence and poverty that confront so many Salvadoran women, men, and children. ...

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6. Policy Implications of Women’s Civil Society Leadership in Latin America

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pp. 185-197

El Salvador is a small country of big contradictions: violence and poverty alongside commitment and hope. These same contradictions inform many of the efforts of Salvadoran civil society organizing in general and the women’s movement in particular. In El Salvador the women’s movement— comprised of a diversity of groups, organizations, and networks—remains determinedly committed to transforming the violence and poverty that confront so many Salvadoran women, men, and children. ...

Appendix: Organizations of Interviewees

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pp. 199-202

Notes

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pp. 203-210

Bibliography

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pp. 211-225

Index

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pp. 227-233

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About the Author

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pp. 234-

SERENA COSGROVE has spent the past twenty years working in the field of international development throughout Latin America. In the 1980s she monitored human rights in Nicaragua and El Salvador. In the 1990s she earned a master’s degree in social anthropology and a doctorate in sociology at Northeastern University, where she studied the impact of ...


E-ISBN-13: 9780813550404
E-ISBN-10: 0813550408
Print-ISBN-13: 9780813547992
Print-ISBN-10: 0813547997

Page Count: 248
Illustrations: 2 figures
Publication Year: 2010

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Subject Headings

  • Women -- Political activity -- Latin America.
  • Leadership in women -- Latin America.
  • Women in development -- Latin America.
  • Civil society -- Latin America.
  • Social movements -- Latin America.
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