Adjunct Assistant Professor of Comparative & Reproductive Politics
Her research focuses on human rights and women's movements in Latin America and the impact these movements had on shaping and implementing state policy. She is currently working on a project to explain the successes and failures of the campaigns for the decriminalization of abortion in Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay.
During the 1960s and 1970s military coups brought authoritarian regimes to power in the Southern Cone (Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Uruguay). In an effort to prevent what was perceived as imminent socialist revolutions, military dictators launched repressive campaigns aimed at demobilizing labor and eliminating dissent. At the same time, human rights movements emerged calling for the end of the abuses and demanding information about political prisoners, victims of torture, executions and disappearances. Once democratic transitions took place, these movements campaigned to demand the prosecution of those responsible for the abuses. What accounts for the different role and impact human rights movements had in each of these countries in the transition and consolidation of democracy, and the rule of law? Did they take part to the same extent in the design and/or implementation of transitional justice mechanisms? We will answer these questions through the analysis of academic readings, movies, and primary sources.
Since the 1990s Latin America has witnessed increasing societal and political debates over sexual and reproductive rights. Issues such as contraception, abortion, same sex marriage, transgender rights, sexual education and assisted reproductive technology have risen to the top of some countries' agendas after decades of silence, taboos, and restrictive or non-existent legislation. The course aims to provide a survey of sexual and reproductive rights in Latin America assessing the state of the regions as a whole, while at the same time highlighting the disparities that exist within it. The course analyzes the multiple factors behind the current policies focusing particularly on the role of women and gay rights movements in advancing more liberal legislation. In addition, we will look at the role of the Catholic Church in these debates and their struggles to prevent any legislative change that goes against their doctrine from happening. Among the cases we will explore are Argentina's same marriage and gender identity legislation, Uruguay's decriminalization of abortion, Costa Rica's ban on IVF technologies and Peru's coercive sterilization program of indigenous populations.