Who is superfluous? Forced sterilizations in Peru, the long struggle for justice and the myth of „overpopulation”

Lecture by Alejandra Ballón Gutiérrez (Peru) and Shalinia Randeria (India/Germany/Austria)

An event (on site) by the Research Network Latin America and the Austrian Latin America Institute in cooperation with Frauen*solidarität and Österreichisch-Peruanische Gesellschaft.

Alejandra Ballón Gutiérrez, social anthropologist, visual artist, feminist activist; Ordinary Assistant Professor at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú
Shalini Randeria, social anthropologist; Rector, Central European University, Vienna
Moderation: Ulrike Lunacek, Frauen*solidarität

For decades the myth of “overpopulation” has led to (most of the time forceful) activities by governments and institutions in many parts of the world targeted in its vast majority against women, women’s bodies and women’s reproductive rights. Feminist critique of this myth and protest against those activities have also been ongoing for decades and widespread, but much too often ignored or marginalized.

In this lecture, the forced sterilization program under the autocratic government of Alberto Fujimori in the 1990s and the long struggle for justice for at least 272.000 women and 22.000 men who suffered forced sterilizations will be analyzed. In addition, incorrectly disseminated statements about overpopulation and “demographic panic” which are linked to ethno-nationalist agendas are discussed.

Both panelists have contributed on these topics in the anthology “Global Female Future” published in Oct. 2022 by Andrea Ernst, Ulrike Lunacek, Gerda Neyer, Rosa Zechner and Andreea Zelinka, all five of them connected to the Austrian feminist NGO on development policy and North-South-relations Frauen*solidarität: https://www.kremayr-scheriau.at/bucher-e-books/titel/global-female-future/

The book will be available at the event.

Alejandra Ballón Gutiérrez is a Peruvian artist and researcher who interrelates gender. human rights and decolonial perspectives. She is doctor in Social Anthropology and Ethnology (EHESS, Paris), Magister in Critical Research, Curatorial y Cibermedia (HEAD, Geneva) and current artistic research professor (PUCP, Lima). Her written and visual work has been published in recognized books and journals of the artistic and academic world. Since 2010 her work has focused on the social problems of public health and women’s rights in Peru. In 2014 she published the book “Memorias del caso peruano de esterilización forzada˝, Fondo Editorial de la Biblioteca Nacional del Perú. Actually, she is the coordinator of The Forced Sterilization Reparations Working Group (GREF) www.lamadre.pe

Shalinia Randeria is a social anthropologist, who focuses on transnationalisation of law and transformation of state and civil society in India while studying globalization from a postcolonial perspective. She is Rector of the Central European University Vienna since 2021; Distinguished Fellow, Monk School of the University of Toronto; Excellence Professor at the University of Bremen, where she directs a research group on “Soft Authoritarianism”. She was Rector of the Institute for Human Sciences (IWM) in Vienna from 2015 to 2021, where she also started her podcastDemocracy in Question that is in its 6th season.  Her publications include the co-edited volumes: Kapitalismus im 21. Jahrhundert (2021), Special Forum on Seed Activism in the Journal of Peasant Studies 47(4), 2020 and Wenn Demokratien demokratisch untergehen (2019), Boundless (Dis)Order – Mobility and Borders in Transition (2019). She published a short piece “Demographic Bulimia“ In: IWMPost 122 (2018).

Ulrike Lunacek is a longstanding activist on feminist, development and LGBTI issues and has been president of the feminist NGO Frauen*solidarität based in Vienna for almost 30 years. She is one of the editors of the book “Global Female Future”. From 1995 until 2020 she was first a national and then a European politician and parliamentarian for the Austrian Green Party, including Vice President of the European Parliament (2014-2017) and briefly in 2020 State Secretary for Arts and Culture. She now lives in Vienna as author and moderator.

Event in English, discussion contributions in German or Spanish can be translated consecutively. 

Registration: office@lai.at

Kategorie: Events
Datum: 25. April 2023, 18:00–20:00
Ort: Österreichisches Lateinamerika-Institut, Frida-Kahlo-Saal, LAI, Türkenstraße 25