Why revolutions rarely revolutionize gender roles
Women and Revolution in Africa, Asia, and the New World evaluates the effect of political upheaval on the way that women live and on the most basic of social organizations—the family. In sixteen spirited presentations, contributors from around the globe—most of whom are natives of the countries about which they write—examine the status of women before, during, and after revolutionary movements. Their case studies reveal a striking commonality in the degree to which the contributions of women are systematically supressed and "forgotten" in the post-revolutionary setting, regardless of whether the movements were led by liberal, socialist, or elite forces.
The contributors approach revolution from a variety of theoretical approaches to analyze how women as a class have experienced specific twentieth-century revolutions. The contributors identify the issues that prompted women to participate in the upheavals, the roles they played, the contributions they made, and the promises they were given by male revolutionaries in return for their efforts.
The pattern of suppression that these essays reveal help to explain how and why revolutions unravel as well as how and why political and social change continues long after the period we call "the revolution" has ended.
Mary Ann Tétreault is professor of political science at Iowa State, a leader of the Feminist and Gender Relations section of the International Studies Association, and a member of the Women's Caucus for Political Science
"Finally! In this exciting and timely volume, Tétreault introduces a framework for analyzing gender relations 'before and after' revolutions…. A wealth of much-needed information, textured description, systematic inquiry, and undogmatic interpretation."—V. Spike Peterson, University of Arizona.