Decolonizing Feminism: From Reproductive Abuse to Reproductive Justice
AbstractThis paper asks why reproductive gains have sometimes amounted to reproductive abuse for Indigenous women in Canada. Guided by an intersectional and decolonial approach, it provides a historical material critique of the individualized rights discourse and reformist goals that tend to underlay feminist struggles in Canada. It explores how western feminism might support decolonization and reproductive justice.stice. Résumé Cet article demande pourquoi les gains en matière de reproduction se sont parfois traduits par des abus en matière de reproduction pour les femmes autochtones au Canada. Guidé par une approche intersectionnelle et décoloniale, il fournit une critique matérielle historique du discours sur les droits individualisés et des objectifs réformistes qui ont tendance à sous-tendre les luttes féministes au Canada. Il explore comment le féminisme occidental pourrait soutenir la décolonisation et la justice reproductive.
Anderson, Kim. 2011. Life Stages and Native Women: Memory, Teachings, and Story Medicine. Winnipeg, MB: University of Manitoba Press.
____. 2016. A Recognition of Being: Reconstructing Native Womanhood, 2nd edition. Toronto, ON: Women’s Press.
Amadahy, Zainab, and Bonita Lawrence. 2009. “Indigenous Peoples and Black People in Canada: Settlers or Allies?” In Breaching the Colonial Contract: Anti-Colonialism in the US and Canada, edited by Arlo Kempf, 105-136. New York, NY: Springer Publishing.
Armstrong, Jeannette. 1995. “Jeannette Armstrong.” In Conversations about Nature, Culture and Eros, edited by Derrick Jensen, 282-299. San Francisco, CA: Sierra Club Books.
Arvin, Maile, Eve Tuck, and Angie Morrill. 2013. “Decolonizing Feminism: Challenging Connections between Settler Colonialism and Heteropatriarchy.” Feminist Formations 25 (1): 8-34.
Asian Communities for Reproductive Justice. 2005. A New Vision for Advancing our Movement for Reproductive Health, Reproductive Rights, and Reproductive Justice. www.forwardtogether.org/assets/docs/ACRJ-A-New-Vision.pdf.
Badgley, Robin F. 1977. Report of the Committee on the Operation of the Abortion Law. Ottawa, ON: Supply and Services.
Boyer, Yvonne. 2014. Moving Aboriginal Health Forward: Discarding Canada’s Legal Barriers. Saskatoon, SK: Purich Publishing.
British Columbia Task Force on Access to Contraception and Abortion Services. 1994. Realizing Choices: The Report of the British Columbia Task Force on Access to Contraception and Abortion Services. Victoria, BC: Province of British Columbia.
Brown, Rosemary. 1996. “The Exploitation of the Oil and Gas Frontier: Its Impact on Lubicon Lake Cree Women.” In Women of the First Nations: Power, Wisdom and Strength, edited by Christine Miller and Patricia Chuchryk, 151-166. Winnipeg, MB: University of Manitoba Press.
Burke, Nora Butler. 2004. “Building a ‘Canadian’ Decolonization Movement: Fighting the Occupation at ‘Home.’” www.theanarchistlibrary.org/library/nora-butler-burke-building-a-canadian-decolonization-movement-fighting-the-occupation-at-home.
Chrisjohn, Roland, and Sherri Young with Michael Maraun. 2006. The Circle Game: Shadows and Substance in the Indian Residential School Experience in Canada. Vancouver, BC: Theytus Press.
Collins, Patricia Hill. 2000. “It’s All in the Family: Intersections on Gender, Race, and Nation.” In Decentering the Center: Philosophy for a Multicultural, Postcolonial, and Feminist World, edited by Uma Narayan and Sandra Harding, 156-176. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.
Combahee River Collective. 1983. “The Combahee River Collective Statement.” In Home Girls: A Black Feminist Anthology, edited by Barbara Smith, 264-273. New York, NY: Kitchen Table-Women of Color Press.
Cook, Katsi. 2008. “Powerful Like a River: Reweaving the Web of Our Lives in Defense of Environmental and Reproductive Justice.” In Original Instructions. Indigenous Teachings for a Sustainable Future, edited by Melissa K. Nelson, 154-167. Rochester, VT: Bear and Company.
Cote-Meek, Sheila. 2014. Colonized Classrooms: Racism, Trauma and Resistance in Post-Secondary Education. Winnipeg, MB: Fernwood Publishing.
Crenshaw, Kimberlé. 1991. “Mapping the Margins: Intersectionality, Identity Politics, and Violence Against Women of Color.” Stanford Law Review 43 (6): 1241-1299.
Danforth, Jessica (Yee). 2010. “Reproductive Justice: For Real, For Me, For You, For Now.” November 6. www.jolocas.blogspot.ca/2011/11/reproductive-justice.html.
____., ed. 2011. Feminism FOR REAL: Deconstructing the Academic Industrial Complex of Feminism. Ottawa, ON: Canadian Center for Policy Alternatives.
Daschuk, James. 2013. Clearing the Plains: Disease, Politics of Starvation, and the Loss of Aboriginal Life. Saskatoon, SK: University of Regina Press.
Davis, Angela. 1983. Women, Race, and Class. New York, NY: Vintage Books.
Devereux, Cecily. 2005. Growing a Race: Nellie L. McClung and the Fiction of Eugenic Feminism. Montreal, QC and Kingston, ON: McGill-Queen’s University Press.
Dhamoon, Rita Kaur. 2011. “Considerations on Mainstreaming Intersectionality.” Political Research Quarterly 64 (1): 230-243.
Ehrenreich, Barbara, and Deidre English. 2005. For Her Own Good: Two Centuries of Experts’ Advice to Women, 2nd ed. New York, NY: Anchor Books, Random House Inc.
Federici, Silvia. 2004. Caliban and the Witch: Women, the Body and Primitive Accumulation. New York, NY: Autonomedia.
____. 2012. Revolution at Point Zero: Housework, Reproduction and Feminist Struggle. Oakland CA: PM Press.
Gerber Fried, Marlene, and Loretta Ross. 1992. “‘Our Bodies, Our Lives: Our Right to Decide’: The Struggle for Abortion Rights and Reproductive Freedom.” Radical America 24 (2): 31-37.
Gimenez, Martha E. 2005. “Capitalism and the Oppression of Women: Marx Revisited.” Science and Society 1 (1): 11-32.
Grande. Sandy. 2004. Red Pedagogy: Native American Social and Political Thought. Minneapolis MN: University of Minnesota Press.
Grey, Sam. 2003. “Decolonising Feminism: Aboriginal Women and the Global ‘Sisterhood.’” Enweyin: The Way We Speak 8: 9-22.
Hankivsky, Olena. 2011. Health Inequities in Canada: Intersectional Frameworks and Practices. Vancouver, BC: University of British Columbia Press.
Hartman, Betsy. 1987. Reproductive Rights and Wrongs: The Global Politics of Population Control and Contraceptive Choice. New York, NY: Harper & Row Publishers.
Hawaleshka, Danylo. 2005. “A Shot in the Dark?” MacLean’s, November 24: 46.
Hillsburg, Heather. 2013. “Towards a Methodology of Intersectionality: An Axiom-Based Approach.” Atlantis: Critical Studies in Gender, Culture, and Social Justice 31 (1): 3-11.
Jamieson, Kathleen. 1978. Indian Women and Law in Canada: Citizens Minus. Ottawa, ON: Advisory Council on the Status of Women.
Jasen, Patricia. 1997. “Race, Culture, and the Colonization of Childbirth in Northern Canada.” Social History of Medicine 10 (3): 383-400.
Jordan-Zachery, Julia S. 2007. “Am I a Black Woman or a Woman who is Black? A Few Thoughts on the Meaning of Intersectionality.” Politics & Gender 3 (2): 254-263.
Lawford, Karen, and Audrey Giles. 2013. “Marginalization and Coercion: Canada’s Evacuation Policy for Pregnant First Nations Women Who Live on Reserves in Rural and Remote Regions.” Pimatisiwin: A Journal of Aboriginal and Indigenous Community Health 10 (3): 327-340.
Lawrence, Bonita, and Enakshi Dua. 2005. “Decolonizing Antiracism.” Social Justice 32 (4): 120-143.
Lerner, Gerda. 1986. The Creation of Patriarchy. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Lorde, Audre. 1984. Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches. Berkeley, CA: Crossing Press.
Lowell, JoAnn. 1995. “NWT Abortion Review Puts Spotlight on the Politics of Medicine.” Herizons 9 (1): 27.
Luna, Zakiya, and Kristin Luker. 2013. “Reproductive Justice.” The Annual Review of Law and Social Science 9 (1): 327-352.
Maile, Arvin, Eve Tuck, and Angie Morrill. 2013. “Decolonizing Feminism: Challenging Connections between Settler Colonialism and Heteropatriarchy.” Feminist Formations 25 (1): 8-34.
Maracle, Lee. 1993. “Racism, Sexism and Patriarchy.” In Returning the Gaze: Essays on Racism, Feminism and Politics, edited by Himani Bannerji, 148-158. Toronto, ON: Sister Vision Press.
Mason, C. Nicole. 2010. Leading at the Intersections: An Introduction to the Intersectional Approach Model for Policy and Social Change. New York, NY: New York University, Women of Color Policy Network.
McCall, Leslie. 2005. “The Complexity of Intersectionality.” Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society 30 (3): 1771-1800.
McGregor, Deborah. 2009. “Honoring Our Relations: An Anishnaabe Perspective on Environmental Justice.” In Speaking for Ourselves: Environmental Justice in Canada, edited by Julian Agyeman, Peter Cole, Randolph Haluza-DeLay, and Pat O’Riley, 27-41. Vancouver, BC: University of British Columbia Press.
Mies, Maria. 1985. “‘Why Do We Need All of This?’ A Call Against Genetic Engineering and Reproductive Technology.” Women’s Studies International Forum 8 (6): 553-560.
____. 1986. Patriarchy and Accumulation on a World Scale: Women in the International Division of Labour. London, UK: Zed Books.
Minkin, Stephen. 1980. “Depo-Provera: A Critical Analysis.” Women & Health 5 (2): 49-69.
Monture, Patricia. 1995. Thunder in My Soul: A Mohawk Woman Speaks. Halifax, NA: Fernwood Publishing.
____. 1999. “Considering Colonialism and Oppression: Aboriginal Women, Justice and the ‘Theory’ of Decolonization.” Native Studies Review 12 (1): 63-94.
Morgensen, Scott Lauria. 2011. Spaces Between Us: Queer Settler Colonialism and Indigenous Decolonization. Minneapolis MN: University of Minnesota Press.
National Aboriginal Health Organization. 2008. Celebrating Birth: Aboriginal Midwifery in Canada. Ottawa, ON: National Aboriginal Health Organization.
Palmater, Pamela D. 2011. “Stretched Beyond Human Limits: Death by Poverty in First Nations.” Canadian Review of Social Policy/Revue canadienne de politique sociale 65/66 (1): 112-127.
Puar, Jasbir K. 2007. Terrorist Assemblages: Homonationalism in Queer Times. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
Richter, Judith. 1996. Vaccination Against Pregnancy: Miracle or Menace? London, UK: Zed Books.
Riddle, John. 1997. Eve’s Herbs: A History of Contraception and Abortion in the West. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Roberts, Dorothy. 1998. Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty. New York, NY: Pantheon Books.
Ross, Loretta. 2011. “Understanding Reproductive Justice?” SisterSong Women of Color Reproductive Health Collective. http://www.trustblackwomen.org/our-work/what-is-reproductive-justice/9-what-is-reproductive-justice?format=pdf.
Sehdev, Robinder Laur. 2010. “Lessons from the Bridge: On the Possibilities of Anti-Racist Feminist Alliances in Indigenous Spaces.” In This is an Honor Song: Twenty Years Since the Blockades, edited by Leanne Simpson and Kiera Ladner, 105-123. Winnipeg, MB: Arbeiter Ring Publications.
Shea, Laura. 2007. Reflections on Depo Provera: Contributions to Improving Drug Regulation in Canada. Toronto, ON: Women and Health Protection.
Shiva, Vandana. 1989. Staying Alive: Women, Ecology, and Development. London, UK: Zed Books.
Silliman, Jael, Marlene Gerber Fried, Loretta Ross, and Elena R. Gutierrez. 2004. “Women of Color and Their Struggle for Reproductive Justice.” In Undivided Rights: Women of Color Organizing for Reproductive Justice, edited by Jael Silliman, Marlene Gerber Fried, Loretta Ross, and Elena R. Gutierrez, 1-24. Cambridge, MA: South End Press.
Simien, Evelyn M. 2007. “Doing Intersectionality Research: From Conceptual Issues to Practical Examples.” Politics & Gender 3 (2): 264-271.
Simpson, Joanna. 2009. Everyone Belongs: A Toolkit for Applying Intersectionality. Ottawa, ON: Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women.
Simpson, Leanne. 2004. “Listening to our Ancestors: Rebuilding Indigenous Nations in the Face of Environmental Destruction.” In Every Grain of Sand: Canadian Perspectives on Ecology and Environment, edited by J.A. Wainwright, 121-134. Waterloo, ON: Wilfrid Laurier University Press.
____. 2014. “Not Murdered and Not Missing.” Voices Rising, March 4. http://nationsrising.org/not-murdered-and-not-missing/.
Solinger, Rickie. 2001. Beggars and Choosers: How the Politics of Choice Shapes Adoption, Abortion, and Welfare in the United States. New York, NY: Hill and Wang.
Smith, Andrea. 2005a. Conquest: Sexual Violence and American Indian Genocide. Cambridge, MA: South End Press.
_____. 2005b. “Beyond Pro Choice versus Pro Life: Women of Color and Reproductive Justice.” NSWA Journal 17 (1): 119-140.
_____. 2005c. “Native American Feminism, Sovereignty, and Social Change.” Feminist Studies 31 (1): 116-132.
____. 2013. “The Problem with Privilege.” Andrea Smith’s Blog, August 14. https://andrea366.wordpress.com/2013/08/14/the-problem-with-privilege-by-andrea-smith/.
Smith, Barbara. 2000. The Truth That Never Hurts: Writings on Race, Gender, and Freedom. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.
Smith, Justine. 1999. “Native Sovereignty and Social Justice: Moving Toward an Inclusive Social Justice Framework.” In Dangerous Intersections: Feminist Perspectives on Population, Environment and Development, edited by Jael Silliman and Ynestra King, 202-213. Boston, MA: South End Press.
St. Denis, Verna. 2007. “Feminism is for Everybody: Aboriginal Women, Feminism and Diversity.” In Making Space for Indigenous Feminism, edited by Joyce Green, 33-52. Halifax, NS: Fernwood Press.
Stevens, Geoffrey. 1974a. “Warning on Abortion.” Globe and Mail, October 23: 6.
_____. 1974b. “A Strange View of Law.” Globe and Mail, October 24: 6.
Stote, Karen. 2015. An Act of Genocide: Colonialism and the Sterilization of Aboriginal Women. Halifax, NS: Fernwood Publishing.
Tait, Carolyn. 2000. A Study of Service Needs of Pregnant Addicted Women in Manitoba. Winnipeg, MB: Prairie Women’s Health Center of Excellence.
Thobani, Sunera. 2001. “The Speech that Shook the Country.” Speech was given at “Women's Resistance: From Victimization to Criminalization” Conference, October 1. Ottawa, ON.
Torpy, Sally J. 2000. “Native American Women and Coerced Sterilization: On the Trail of Tears in the 1970s.” American Indian Culture and Research Journal 24 (2): 1-22.
Tuck, Eve, and K. Wayne Yang. 2012. “Decolonization is Not a Metaphor.” Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education and Society 1 (1): 1-40.
Wagner, Sally Roesch. 2001. Sisters in Spirit: Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Influence on Early American Feminists. Summertown, TN: Native Voices.
Walia, Harsha. 2012. “Decolonizing Together: Moving Beyond a Politics of Solidarity Toward a Practice of Decolonization.” Briarpatch Magazine, January 1. https://briarpatchmagazine.com/articles/view/decolonizing-together.
Walsh, Mary Williams. 1992. “Abortion Horror Stories Spur Inquiry – Canada: Questions Raised After Women Allege Hospital Denied Them Anesthesia as Punishment.” LA Times, April 3.
Waring, Marilyn. 1990. If Women Counted: A New Feminist Economics. San Francisco, CA: Harper Collins Publishers.
Warsh, Cheryl Krasnick. 2010. Prescribed Norms: Women and Health in Canada and the United States Since 1800. Toronto, ON: University of Toronto Press.
Wiebe, Sarah Marie, and Erin Marie Konsmo. 2014. “Indigenous Body as Contaminated Site? Examining Reproductive Justice in Aamjiwnaang.” In Fertile Ground: Exploring Reproduction in Canada, edited by Stephanie Paterson, Francesca Scala, and Marlene L. Sokolon, 325-358. Montreal, QC and Kingston, ON: McGill-Queen’s University Press.
Williams, Krysta, and Ashling Ligate. 2011. “This Shit is Real: Deconstructing Dialogue in Feminist Education.” In Feminism for Real: Deconstructing the Academic Industrial Complex of Feminism, edited by Jessica Danforth, 153-164. Ottawa, ON: Canadian Center for Policy Alternatives.
Williamson, Tara. 2014. “Don’t be Tricked.” Voices Rising, February 28. http://nationsrising.org/dont-be-tricked/.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
1. Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication, with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
2. Authors are aware that articles published in Atlantis are indexed and made available through various scholarly and professional search tools, including but not limited to Erudit.
3. Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
4. Authors are permitted and encouraged to preprint their work, that is, post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process. This can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work. Read more on preprints here.