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Gender, race and power : examining the Peruvian state’s relationship with intersecting forms of violence and inequalities (1980-2019) Tantalean Castaneda, Romina Fernanda

Abstract

Women in Peru are still experiencing high levels of gender-based violence (GBV). Despite the existence of a broad legal framework that strives to eradicate violence against women (VAW) and GBV, there is limited impact towards transforming structural inequalities/inequities that produce and perpetuate hierarchies along of gender, race, ethnicity, sexuality and class lines in Peru, all of which inextricably linked to GBV. Drawing largely on primary official documents and secondary literature, this research aims to critically understand the Peruvian State’s relationship with intersecting forms of gender based-violence and inequalities during war (1980–2000) and peace (2000–mid-2009). The deep-rooted and present-day forms of violence and inequalities are present not just in wartime but also in peacetime, reverberating into a historicized continuum of violence that is critically linked to patriarchal, ethno-racial, gendered and colonial structures of power. I thus provide a state-centred analysis with a prioritization of power, decoloniality and intersectionality to understand how structures of power and processes of differentiation operate in the production of gender-based violence that disproportionately affect indigenous and impoverished rural women. To that end, I analyze a case study of the 2009–2015 National Plan against Violence toward Women and its implementation, reflecting upon its vision and success as well as limitations and constraints, in a continuing effort to unpack the complexity of adequately addressing GBV and its underlying causes. I finally emphasize the Peruvian State’s responsibility to work towards the substantial transformation of these inequalities associated with structures of power that have sustained gender-based violence in war and peace alongside its historicized continuation, particularly in light of the State’s active facilitation of the same. With this, I hope to improve our understandings, rethink the State’s responses and strategies in culturally diverse settings, and improve access to justice, as central to effectively addressing the historical and contemporary forms of sociocultural ideologies and systems of inequality that affect indigenous and non-indigenous women's lives differently, while working to prioritize and address prevention in practical terms.

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International

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