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Negotiating women's rights during the Latin-American Cold War: Argentina, Chile, the United States and the origins of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (1974-1979)

Grant number: 20/12224-4
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2021
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Political Science - International Politics
Principal Investigator:Felipe Pereira Loureiro
Grantee:Natali Francine Cinelli Moreira
Host Institution: Instituto de Relações Internacionais (IRI). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):22/10905-0 - The politics of women's rights at the United Nations: a transnational diplomatic history of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (1974-1979), BE.EP.DR


This research aims at analyzing how Argentinean, Chilean and, North-American agents participated in the negotiation process of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), signed in 1979. Although CEDAW has been widely studied, the literature has mainly focused on the immediate context of the Convention's negotiation inside the United Nations (UN). Scholars have overlooked how domestic political disputes and power relations and the Cold War may have shaped CEDAW. Considering that both the United States and the Soviet Union relied on the status of women as a measure of progress and national superiority, it is surprising that the literature has approached so superficially the impact of the Cold War in the negotiations of CEDAW. Intending to contribute to the literature of the so-called Latin-American Cold War, we will analyze how Argentinean, Chilean, and North-American agents discussed and decided domestically the Convention's content, and if the Cold War impacted these decisions. We intend to integrate into the research both domestic and international dimensions, as well as state and non-state actors, to shed some light on the symmetries and dissonances on the relationship of the United States and Latin America throughout the 1970s, especially on how these agents understood the role of women in their respective societies, and, amidst the dynamics of the regional Cold War, contributed through CEDAW to the construction of women as a global subject. We selected the cases mainly because the three countries have participated in the working groups created within the UN for the negotiations of CEDAW. To conduct the research, we will rely on primary documents that we will collect in the national archives of Argentina, Chile, and the United States, in the United Nations archives, and in the archives of non-governmental organizations involved in the negotiations of CEDAW. Finally, we will also rely on critical legal studies and tools of foreign policy analysis to analyze the role of the referred agents in the negotiations of CEDAW. (AU)

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