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Can reproductive health program empower women? : a feminist post-development critique of european union funded reproductrive health program in Turkey

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2010
Özden, Aslı
Whithin the recent human centered development approach, the mission of development's declared aims are alleviating poverty, increasing choices by reducing 'risks' and empowering women. In line with the human development framework, Reproductive Health program aims at improving women's health, enlarging women's chices and engendering reproductive rights. The scope of 'empowerment' is conceptualized as strenthening their capabilities to prevent sexual reproductive health risks, thereby enlarging their reproductive choices whithout reflecting on the role of general political economic structures. this thesis argues that while general health indicators and life choices and rights of poor women are decreasing due to neoliberal shrinkage of social policy and flexible working regimes, the sole focus on reproductive health and rights by development agents is irrelevant. In line with this argument, this study draws upon post-development theory in order to argue that development is a historically specific representation of social reality which permits particular modes of knowing while disqualifying others for perpetuating gobal hegemonic regimes.