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Housewives and Entrepreneurs: Local Coalitions of Power and the Political Construction of Women’s Entrepreneurship in Turkey

Abstract : Scholars have interpreted the popularity of women’s entrepreneurship as a co-optation of feminism by neoliberalism at a global level. I argue that we need to pay more attention to local actors promoting women’s entrepreneurship. This article focuses on projects targeting lower-class women and relies on an ethnographic survey of a handicraft market in Gaziantep, Turkey. The promotion of women’s entrepreneurship fits both the Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) conservative agenda and the strategies of local businesses. I first show that although officially a civil society initiative, this project is tied to partisan, corporate, and municipal support. Second, I analyze the economic, social, and political effects of the market on saleswomen’s lives. As a site for political mobilization by the AKP, this project has implications for women’s ties with the municipality and the party. It is a telling case to analyze how women’s empowerment projects might be instrumental for a populist and authoritarian party’s agenda.
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https://hal-sciencespo.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03716233
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Submitted on : Thursday, July 7, 2022 - 11:43:45 AM
Last modification on : Friday, July 8, 2022 - 3:17:20 AM

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Prunelle Aymé. Housewives and Entrepreneurs: Local Coalitions of Power and the Political Construction of Women’s Entrepreneurship in Turkey. Social Politics, Oxford University Press (OUP), 2022, ⟨10.1093/sp/jxac017⟩. ⟨hal-03716233⟩

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