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What is hindering progress? The marginalization of women's sexual and reproductive health and rights in Brazil and Chile

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 March 2020

Jasmine Gideon*
Department of Geography, Environment and Development Studies, DBirkbeck Univeristy of London, Malet St, LondonWC1E 7HX, UK
Marianna Leite
Department of Geography, Environment and Development Studies, DBirkbeck Univeristy of London, Malet St, LondonWC1E 7HX, UK
Gabriela Alvarez Minte
Department of Geography, Environment and Development Studies, DBirkbeck Univeristy of London, Malet St, LondonWC1E 7HX, UK
*Corresponding author. Email:


The paper draws on the cases of Brazil and Chile to consider the lack of progress towards securing better health outcomes for women in the field of sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR). At first glance, these poor outcomes for women appear surprising, given that both countries represent middle-income countries where significant developments have occurred towards ensuring universal access to healthcare services. Yet, a more nuanced analysis uncovers the historically constructed gender regimes and policy legacies within relevant institutions that act to limit progress. The discussion in the paper specifically focuses on the evolution of the health sector in the two countries, the role of the medical profession and the influence of the Catholic Church, which, we argue, have been key to constraining women's SRHR in Brazil and Chile.

Research Article
Copyright © 2015 Taylor & Francis

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What is hindering progress? The marginalization of women's sexual and reproductive health and rights in Brazil and Chile
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