Lena Joos

Challenging Patriarchy, Class, and Imperialism. The Philippine Women’s Movements (1970-1992)

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Building on the work of feminist and decolonial scholars this article traces transnational feminisms in the Philippine nationalist democratic women’s movements between 1970 and 1992. Considering the activists’ visions of the future as relevant political acts, I explore how feminism was articulated amidst self-determination and class struggles and how this was tied to transnational entanglements. The article rejects a monolithic Western view of feminism and aims to provide a differentiated historical perspective on transnational feminisms. Based on non-state sources and oral history interviews, I argue for two theses: first, Filipina militant women reappropriated the meaning of feminism into their contexts by connecting women, class, and national struggle. Second, by creating shared future visions of liberation, the Philippine women’s movements built transnational networks of solidarity that shaped their activism financially, politically, and ideologically. Through international exchange, they increasingly located their struggle in a global «Third-World» context. Overall, the visions of the Philippine women’s movements were not only ideas – of peace, women’s emancipation, and national sovereignty – but also practices: of resistance, networking, and solidarity. In sum, the article contributes to a relational and historically informed understanding of feminism and women’s movements and illustrates how «Third World women» have been an important source of feminist thought and action


  • Feminism
  • Philippines
  • Transnational


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