This book explores the reflections of women in the global North whose "doing good" work is aimed at improving conditions for other women. Drawing on interviews with women NGO workers in seven different European countries about their experiences and perspectives on working on gendered ... issues affecting women in the global South, this book looks at the ways in which the work they do is embedded in power structures and inequalities.
NGOs headquartered in the North have been, for some time, the most visible in attempts to address the poverty, lack of political representation, and labor exploitation that disproportionally affect women from the global South. Feminist NGOs and NGOs focusing on women's rights have been successful in attracting funding for their causes, but critics argue that the highly educated elites from the global North and South who run them fail to question or understand the power hierarchies in which they operate. In order to give depth to these criticisms, Sara de Jong interviewed women NGO workers in seven different European countries about their experiences and perspectives on working on gendered issues affecting women in the global South. Complicit Sisters untangles and analyzes the complex tensions women NGO workers face and explores the ways in which they negotiate potential complicities in their work. Weighing the women NGO workers' first-hand accounts against critiques arising from feminist theory, postcolonial theory, global civil society theory and critical development literature, de Jong brings to life the dilemmas of <"doing good.>" She considers these workers' ideas about "sisterhood," privilege, gender stereotypes, feminism, and the private/public divide, and she suggests avenues for productive engagement between these and the inevitable tensions and complexities in NGO work.
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