Journal or Book Title
The Scholar & Feminist Online
From the 1930s through the 1970s, first eugenics and then the Cold War made “overpopulation” a key word in defining the nature and cause of “Third World” poverty, as well as what the form of its solution—development—would be. Defining fertility as the problem simultaneously decentered blame—it was not colonialism or extractive world economic systems that cause poverty in the Global South—and provided a very specific cause and site of intervention: irresponsible, careless mothers and their excessive children. We know this story well; many feminist scholars and activists have made the argument that this discourse, imagined in relationship to the social science unit of the national population, was crucial to the elaboration of twentieth-century biopolitical regimes of post/neo/colonial governance.
Life (Un)Ltd: Feminism, BIoscience, Race
UMass Amherst Open Access Policy
Briggs, Laura, "Biopolitics of Adoption" (2013). The Scholar & Feminist Online. 9.
Retrieved from https://scholarworks.umass.edu/wost_faculty_pubs/9