Policies as Gendering Practices: Re-Viewing Categorical Distinctions

Published on Jan 2, 2017in Journal of Women, Politics & Policy
· DOI :10.1080/1554477X.2016.1198207
Carol Bacchi26
Estimated H-index: 26
(University of Adelaide)
ABSTRACTFor some time feminist scholars have been concerned with rethinking the constraints imposed on feminists’ strategies by categorical distinctions, such as the distinction between “women” and “men.” This issue has become more pressing due to a political commitment to recognize diversity among women and among men (consider here discussions of masculinities and intersectionality). This article offers the conceptualization of policies as gendering practices as a way to rethink categorical distinctions and to direct attention to how inequality is “done.” In this approach the focus shifts from considering how policies impact on women and men to asking how they constitute or make them come to be. More broadly, this contribution recommends the need to examine policies for their interacting, constitutive effects, asking how they are potentially gendering, racializing, heteronorming, classing, disabling, third-worldizing, etc.
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