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Mariarosa Dalla Costa — To Whom Does the Body of this Woman Belong?

I have chosen to focus the thoughts I will develop today on a fact that I consider fundamental for every other discourse concerning women’s autonomy. That is: for women, in every part of the world, the construction of autonomy has meant first of all the re-appropriation of their body; it has meant to have the availability of that female body which has always been at stake in the relation between the sexes. This was true for us at the beginning of the ‘70s in Italy, as it was for the Mayan women when they began to draft their law, at the beginning of the ‘90s in Chiapas. To mention here and compare some aspects of our problematic and struggles on this terrain could be useful then in a battle that for us, as for them, as for many other women in many other countries, has reached important goals, but is far from being concluded. Download full PDF here: dallacosta_mexico_paper.pdf

Mariarosa Dalla Costa — Women’s Autonomy and Remuneration for Care Work in the New Emergencies

Every construction of autonomy has its own history that evolves in a specific context and must face specific obstacles and battles. Yesterday I mentioned the first stages of this history through the initiatives of that feminist movement in which I directly participated—initiatives necessary for women to regain the availability of their body. I have also recalled how, on a planetary level, this battle is far from being concluded. Here I would like to consider other aspects of this history, starting again from the initial moments of that political experience, to assess what is the relation between women and autonomy today with respect to some emergent problems, and also to ask, in relation to the latter, what has happened to both the demand that housework (or care work) be remunerated and to women’s economic autonomy. Download full PDF here: dallacosta_mexico_paper2.pdf