Shaping the Motherhood of Indigenous Mexico

Vania Smith-Oka

Published by Vanderbilt University Press
ISBN 10: 0826519180 / ISBN 13: 9780826519184
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Synopsis: Mainstream Mexican views of indigenous women center on them as problematic mothers, and development programs have included the goal of helping these women become "good mothers." Economic incentives and conditional cash transfers are the vehicles for achieving this goal. With ethnographic immediacy, Shaping the Motherhood of Indigenous Mexico examines the dynamics among the various players--indigenous mothers, clinicians, and representatives of development programs. The women's voices lead the reader to understand the structures of dependency that paradoxically bind indigenous women within a program that calls for their empowerment.

The cash transfer program is Oportunidades, which enrolls more than a fifth of Mexico's population. It expects mothers to become involved in their children's lives at three nodes--health, nutrition, and education. If women do not comply with the standards of modern motherhood, they are dropped from the program and lose the bi-monthly cash payments. Smith-Oka explores the everyday implementation of the program and its unintended consequences.

The mothers are often berated by clinicians for having too many children (Smith-Oka provides background on the history of eugenics and population control in Mexico) and for other examples of their "backward" ways. An entire chapter focuses on the humor indigenous women use to cope with disrespectful comments. Ironically, this form of resistance allows the women to accept the situation that controls their behavior.

From the Inside Flap: Development programs that control reproduction and mothering practices while offering women empowerment

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Title: Shaping the Motherhood of Indigenous Mexico
Publisher: Vanderbilt University Press
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: New

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Smith-Oka, Vania
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Book Description Vanderbilt University Press, United States, 2013. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. Mainstream Mexican views of indigenous women centre on them as problematic mothers, and development programmes have included the goal of helping these women become good mothers. Economic incentives and conditional cash transfers are the vehicles for achieving this goal. With ethnographic immediacy, Shaping the Motherhood of Indigenous Mexico examines the dynamics among the various players - indigenous mothers, clinicians, and representatives of development programmes. The women s voices lead the reader to understand the structures of dependency that paradoxically bind indigenous women within a programme that calls for their empowerment. The cash transfer programme is Oportunidades, which enrolls more than a fifth of Mexico s population. It expects mothers to become involved in their children s lives at three nodes - health, nutrition, and education. If women do not comply with the standards of modern motherhood, they are dropped from the programme and lose the bi-monthly cash payments. Smith-Oka explores the everyday implementation of the program and its unintended consequences. The mothers are often berated by clinicians for having too many children (Smith-Oka provides background on the history of eugenics and population control in Mexico) and for other examples of their backward ways. An entire chapter focuses on the humor indigenous women use to cope with disrespectful comments. Ironically, this form of resistance allows the women to accept the situation that controls their behaviour. Seller Inventory # TNP9780826519184

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