University of Connecticut

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Please Join Us For A WGSS Book Manuscript Workshop With Elva Orozco Mendoza

Tuesday, October 13, 2020
11:00am – 1:00pm


Scholars of maternal politics have traditionally characterized maternal activism as a social movement, a performance, a form of protest, and, lately, as a public expression of precariousness. In contrast, this chapter offers a different approach to the study of maternal action by theorizing the maternal contract as a bottom-up agreement subscribed to by the victims’ mothers to defend their children’s rights. In offering this interpretation, this chapter shows how maternal activism in the Americas surfaces to remedy state abandonment of marginalized citizens. In so doing, maternal activists imagine, draft, and propose new rights, direct material resources to vulnerable people, reclaim those women and men treated as foreign subjects by their polity, and offer an alternative vision of society based on the preservation of life. This chapter contributes to scholarly efforts to decolonize our political concepts by formulating a bottom-up conception of the maternal contract.

Elva Orozco Mendoza is an assistant professor of political science at Texas Christian University. Her research interests include extreme gender violence, democratic theory and practice, protest politics and political action in Latin America, critical approaches to state sovereignty, and comparative political theory.


Jane Gordon,

el Instituto (primary), College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, UConn Master Calendar

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