Building Back Better? — Negotiating Normative Boundaries of Gender Mainstreaming and Post-Tsunami Reconstruction in Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam, Indonesia


Jauhola, Marjaana. 2010. "Building Back Better? — Negotiating Normative Boundaries of Gender Mainstreaming and Post-Tsunami Reconstruction in Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam, Indonesia." Review of International Studies 36 (1): 29-50.

Author: Marjaana Jauhola


This article focuses on gender mainstreaming policies and advocacy on equality in the post-tsunami context in Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam. Through the analysis this article illustrates how gender mainstreaming policy documents and gender advocacy of the provincial and central government, when drawing from sex/gender division and binary of genders, reproduce heteronormative boundaries. By focusing on details, I argue that the image of the heteronormative nuclear family participates in normalizing other identity categories; such as urban and middle-class. I also provide examples of how simultaneous to the production of dominant norms, gender advocacy challenges heteronormativity and norms governing heterosexuality and actively question the dominant gender norms. Drawn from postcolonial feminist and recent queer critiques, I argue that advocacy that solely focuses on gender and/or sexuality reduces human bodies and their desires to simplistic stick figures. Thus, it remains blind to other forms of violence, such as global economic and political frameworks that define 'building back better' primarily as recovery and rehabilitation of economy, assets and labour force.

Topics: Environment, Environmental Disasters, Gender, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, LGBTQ, Political Economies, Violence Regions: Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Indonesia

Year: 2010

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