• Sandra Whitworth
Part of the International Political Economy Series book series


The previous two chapters have examined the ways in which IPPF and ILO policies and procedures have been informed by assumptions around gender relations. It has been argued that much of early IPPF policy attempted to de-link birth control from women’s reproductive freedom and stressed instead its contribution to family, social and global stability. While explicit reference to women, men and the relations between them disappeared from IPPF policy, this strategy was nonetheless gendered. This is so because of the gendering effects that resulted from making women, their sexuality, and their reproductive freedom, invisible. This strategy implicitly reinforced traditional assumptions about nuclear family norms and moreover, served to disempower women through dissociating birth control from women’s reproductive freedom. By privileging social stability over women’s reproductive freedom, the IPPF could justify the adoption of policies which worked to the immediate detriment of women’s reproductive autonomy.


Birth Control International Relation Gender Relation International Politics Protective Legislation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Zillah R. Eisenstein, The Female Body and the Law (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), p. 205.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    For a related point, see V. Spike Peterson, ‘Transgressing Boundaries: Theories of Knowledge, Gender and International Relations’, Millennium, 21 (2), 1992, pp. 183–206.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 4.
    Richard K. Ashley, ‘Living on Border Lines: Man, Poststructuralism and War’, in J. Der Derian and M.J. Shapiro (eds), International/Intertextual Relations: Postmodern Readings of World Politics (Lexington, Mass.: Lexington Books, 1989), passim.Google Scholar
  4. See also Patrick M. Morgan, Theories and Approaches to International Politics (New Brunswick, New Jersey: Transaction Books, 1987), chapter 1.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Anne Sisson Runyan and V. Spike Peterson, ‘The Radical Future of Realism: Feminist Subversions of IR Theory’, Alternatives, 16 (1991), p. 100.Google Scholar
  6. 8.
    Cynthia Enloe, Bananas, Beaches and Bases: Making Feminist Sense of International Politics (London: Pandora, 1989), p. 2 and chapter 1 passim.Google Scholar
  7. 9.
    Ibid.; and Jane Jenson, ‘Different but not Exceptional: the Feminism of Permeable Fordism’, New Left Review 184, November–December 1990, p. 60.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Sandra Whitworth 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sandra Whitworth
    • 1
  1. 1.York UniversityCanada

Personalised recommendations