Coercive Harmony in Land Acquisition: The Gendered Impact of Corporate ‘Responsibility’ in the Brazilian Amazon


Miyasaka Porro, Noemi, and Joaquim Shiraishi Neto. 2014. “Coercive Harmony in Land Acquisition: The Gendered Impact of Corporate ‘Responsibility’ in the Brazilian Amazon.” Feminist Economics 20 (1): 227–48. 

Authors: Noemi Miyasaka Porro, Joaquim Shiraishi Neto


In rural development, women’s access to land is recognized as a condition for reaching gender equality. This contribution discusses the tension between this formal recognition and concrete realities in rural development for traditional Amazonian communities by examining large-scale land acquisitions in Brazil, a land-abundant developing country, in the wake of the 2007–08 global food price crises. This study applies anthropological and legal perspectives to analyze problems related to gender inequality caused by large-scale land acquisitions. It argues that inequalities cannot be resolved by simply changing regulations related to traditional communities’ and women’s rights and that gender relations and land tenure issues reflect interconnected social arrangements based on historical specificities of traditional communities. Case studies show that land acquisitions by outsiders disrupt these arrangements, despite stated commitments to social and environmental responsibility. Such “coercive harmony” is only unmasked when communities are conscious of their rights, enabling effective use of the legal apparatus.

Keywords: gender, food security, land, development, Amazon

Topics: Development, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Land Tenure, Land Grabbing, Multi-National Corporations, Rights, Land Rights, Women's Rights, Food Security Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Brazil

Year: 2014



Hepburn, Stephanie, and Rita J. Simon. 2013. HUMAN TRAFFICKING AROUND THE WORLD: HIDDEN IN PLAIN SIGHT. New York: Columbia University Press.

Authors: Stephanie Hepburn, Rita J. Simon


An examination of human trafficking around the world including the following countries: United States, Japan, United Arab Emirates, Thailand, Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Colombia, Iraq, Syria, Canada, Italy, France, Iran, India, Niger, China, South Africa, Australia, United Kingdom, Chile, Germany, Poland, Mexico, Russia, and Brazil. (WorldCat)


Table of Contents:


Part I: Work Visa Loopholes for Traffickers
1) United States
2) Japan
3) United Arab Emirates

Part II: Stateless Persons
4) Thailand
5) Israel & The Occupied Palestinian Territories

Part III: Unrest, displacement, and Who is in charge
6) Colombia
7) Iraq
8) Syria

Part IV: Conflation
9) Canada

Part V: Conflicting Agendas
10) Italy
11) France

Part VI: Gender Apartheid
12) Iran

Part VII: Social Hierarchy
13) India
14) Niger
15) China

Part VIII: Muti Murder
16) South Africa

Part IX: Hard-to-Prove Criterion and a slap on the wrist
17) Australia
18) United Kingdom
19) Chile
20) Germany

Part X: Transparent borders
21) Poland

Part XI: Fear Factor
22) Mexico

Part XII: Poverty and Economic Boom
23) Russia
24) Brazil


*Each Chapter follows the following format with some variations:

As a destination
Internal trafficking
Trafficking abroad
What happens to victims after trafficking
What happens to traffickers
Internal efforts to decrease trafficking



"Devestation from a natural disaster...creates a sudden high demand for low-wage and largely unskilled labor. Disruption of the traditional labor supply leaves room for illicit contractors to move in, and new workers can be brought in unnoticed." (19)

"There continue to be more criminal convictions of sex traffickers than of forced-labor traffickers [However, this number of individuals victimized by forced labor may be increasing]." (32)

"Many experts state that the yakuza (organized crime) networks play a significant role in the smuggling and subsequent debt bondage of women--particularly women from China, Thailand, and Colombia--for forced prostitution in Japan. Determining the exact extent of yakuza involvement is difficult because of the covert nature of the sex industry. Consequently, the yakuza are able to minimize people's direct knowledge of their involvement...The yakuza networks work with organized crime groups from other nations, such as China, Russia, and Colombia." (49-50)

Topics: Economies, Gender, Women, Men, Girls, Boys, International Law, International Human Rights, Multi-National Corporations, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights, Sexual Violence, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, Sexual Slavery, Trafficking, Human Trafficking, Labor Trafficking, Sex Trafficking Regions: Africa, West Africa, Americas, Central America, North America, South America, Asia, East Asia, Middle East, Southeast Asia, Europe, Central Europe, Eastern Europe, Western Europe, Oceania Countries: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, France, Germany, India, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Niger, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories, Poland, Russian Federation, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America

Year: 2013

The Invisible Water Managers


Dankelman, Irene, and Joan Davidson. 1988. “The Invisible Water Managers.” In Women and Environment in the Third World, 29–41. London: Earthscan Publications Limited.

Authors: Irene Dankelman, Joan Davidson


This chapter evaluates the UN’s International Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation Decade (1982-1992) by focussing specific attention on how successfully-- in light of structural, cultural, and gender-based discrimination-- limitations on women’s access to quality water supplies have been addressed. Dankelman and Davidson highlight a reality that subsequent academics use as the foundation of their argument: women already do a great deal to manage water on a daily basis when they make decisions on how to collect and transport, how different water sources of varying qualities should be used for different purposes, and how to purify drinking water. The authors use case studies from Burkina Faso, Kenya, and Brazil to illustrate how over centuries of performing these informal water management tasks, women have built up substantial knowledge of water, health, and sanitation that is passed on through generational exchanges and that must be acknowledged if improvements to water supplies are to be successful.

Topics: Gender, Women, Health, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, International Organizations Regions: Africa, East Africa, West Africa, Americas, South America Countries: Brazil, Burkina Faso, Kenya

Year: 1988

Women’s Movements and Democratic Transition in Chile, Brazil, East Germany, and Poland


Baldez, Lisa. 2003. “Women’s Movements and Democratic Transition in Chile, Brazil, East Germany, and Poland.” Comparative Politics 35 (3): 253–72.

Author: Lisa Baldez

Topics: Civil Society, Democracy / Democratization, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Political Participation Regions: Americas, South America, Europe, Central Europe Countries: Brazil, Chile, Germany, Poland

Year: 2003

Guerrilleras in Latin America: Domestic and International Roles


Gonzalez-Perez, Margaret. 2006. “Guerrilleras in Latin America: Domestic and International Roles.” Journal of Peace Research 43 (3): 313–29.

Author: Margaret Gonzalez-Perez


This analysis identifies two different categories of guerrilla organizations and the roles of women within each. Guerrilla movements with ‘international’ agendas typically oppose US imperialism, capitalist expansion, or Western culture in general. ‘Domestic’ guerrilla organizations usually take action against perceived forces of oppression within their own nation. These different agendas have a direct impact on the role of women within them. Internationally oriented guerrilla groups assign traditional, limited gender roles to their female members, while domestic guerrilla organizations challenge domestic prohibitions, including those imposed on women, and encourage full and active participation of female members at all levels of guerrilla activity. This hypothesis is supported by comparative case studies of the groups in question. The study of women’s roles within guerrilla movements provides insight into modern political issues, such as insurgencies and other non-traditional methods of warfare. The support of half a population can enable a guerrilla organization to further its objectives considerably, and as female participation increases, the group itself gains power. Thus, an in-depth understanding of women and their relationship to guerrilla movements contributes substantially to peace and conflict studies as well as studies of non-traditional warfare.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Female Combatants, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups Regions: Americas, Caribbean countries, Central America, North America, South America Countries: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, El Salvador, Mexico, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay

Year: 2006

Gender Quotas, Candidate Selection, and Electoral Campaigns: Comparing Argentina and Brazil


Marx, Jutta, Jutta Borner, and Mariana Caminotti. 2009. “Gender Quotas, Candidate Selection, and Electoral Campaigns: Comparing Argentina and Brazil.” In Feminist Agendas and Democracy in Latin America, edited by Jane S. Jaquette, 45–64. Durham, London: Duke University Press.

Authors: Jutta Marx, Jutta Borner, Mariana Caminotti

Topics: Gender, Governance, Quotas, Elections Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Argentina, Brazil

Year: 2009

Inventing the ‘Mulher Paulista’: Politics, Rebellion, and the Gendering of Brazilian Regional Identities


Weinstein, Barbara. 2006. “Inventing the ‘Mulher Paulista’: Politics, Rebellion, and the Gendering of Brazilian Regional Identities.” Journal of Women’s History 18 (1): 22-49. doi:10.1353/jowh.2006.0028.

Author: Barbara Weinstein


This article considers the complicated relationship between women's mobilization and their recognition as political actors. In 1932 the state of São Paulo, long Brazil's dominant political center, took up arms against the federal government, headed by Getúlio Vargas, in protest against São Paulo's diminished status under the new dictatorship. A key feature of this short-lived civil war was the prominent role of women in the regionalist movement. Contemporary accounts emphasized the active participation of women-testimony that implies an expanded female presence in the public sphere. I argue, however, that identification of the movement's female supporters with an archetypical figure, A Mulher Paulista (The Paulista Woman) limited the subversive implications of women's mobilization. Far from celebrating women's new role in politics, women and men involved in the movement construed women's participation as exceptional and motivated by moral outrage, not politics. Furthermore, the figure of a Mulher Paulista had a specific class and racial valence; the paulista leadership represented her participation as emblematic of the modernity and civic superiority of regional culture, compared to the poorer, less Europeanized regions of Brazil that supported the dictatorship.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Gender, Women, Political Participation Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Brazil

Year: 2006

Criminalizing Male Violence in Brazil's Women's Police Stations: From Flawed Essentialism to Imagined Communities


Hautzinger, Sarah. 2002. "Criminalising Male Violence in Brazil's Women's Police Stations: From Flawed Essentialism to Imagined Communities." Journal of Gender Studies 11 (3): 243-51. 

Author: Sarah Hautzinger


In Brazil, the creation of all-female police stations to encourage the denunciation and prosecution of violent crimes against women represents one of several examples of state-institutionalised feminism. This paper recounts the history of the implementation of these innovative institutions, and examines difficulties encountered in this experience, with particular focus on the differences between the predominantly white, middle-class feminists that originated the idea and the predominantly black, working-class policewomen charged with carrying it out. Anti-essentialist theory is useful for understanding the flawed logic that produced inappropriate expectations of policewomen. However, the paper concludes that this perspective offers little direction for furthering the nascent reform of law enforcement, and offers a feminist version of an imagined communities model in its place.

Topics: Domestic Violence, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Security, Security Sector Reform Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Brazil

Year: 2002

Operation Princess in Rio de Janeiro: Policing ‘Sex Trafficking’, Strengthening Worker Citizenship, and the Urban Geopolitics of Security in Brazil


Amar, Paul. 2009. “Operation Princess in Rio de Janeiro: Policing ‘Sex Trafficking’, Strengthening Worker Citizenship, and the Urban Geopolitics of Security in Brazil.” Security Dialogue 40 (4-5): 513-41.

Author: Paul Amar


This article develops new insights into the gendered insecurities of the neoliberal state in Latin America by exploring the militarization of public security in Rio de Janeiro during 2003-08 around campaigns to stop the 'trafficking' of sex workers. Findings illuminate the intersection of three neoliberal governance logics: (1) a moralistic humanitarian-rescue agenda promoted by evangelical populists and police groups; (2) a juridical 'law and rights' logic promoted by justice-sector actors and human-rights NGOS; (3) a worker-empowerment logic articulated by the governing Workers' Party (PT) in alliance with social-justice movements, police reformers, and prostitutes' rights groups. Gender and race analyses map the antagonisms between these three logics of neoliberal governance, and how their incommensurabilities generate crisis in the arena of security policy. By exploring Brazil's fraught efforts to attain the status of 'human security superpower' through these interventions, the article challenges the view that the reordering of security politics in the global south is inevitably linked to desecularization, disempowerment, and militarization.

Keywords: security, gender, human trafficking, race, Brazil

Topics: Gender, Women, Governance, Livelihoods, Sexual Livelihoods, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Race, Security, Human Security, Trafficking, Sex Trafficking Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Brazil

Year: 2009

Violence in the City of Women: Police and Batterers in Bahia, Brazil


Hautzinger, Sarah. 2007. Violence in the City of Women: Police and Batterers in Bahia, Brazil. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press.

Author: Sarah Hautzinger


Brazil's innovative all-female police stations, installed as part of the return to civilian rule in the 1980s, mark the country's first effort to police domestic violence against women. Sarah J. Hautzinger's vividly detailed, accessibly written study explores this phenomenon as a window onto the shifting relationship between violence and gendered power struggles in the city of Salvador da Bahia. Hautzinger brings together distinct voices—unexpectedly macho policewomen, the battered women they are charged with defending, indomitable Bahian women who disdain female victims, and men who grapple with changing pressures related to masculinity and honor. What emerges is a view of Brazil's policing experiment as a pioneering, and potentially radical, response to demands of the women's movement to build feminism into the state in a society fundamentally shaped by gender.

Topics: Domestic Violence, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Masculinity/ies, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Security, Security Sector Reform Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Brazil

Year: 2007


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