Group 13

Mana intindinkchu: I Don’t Understand

Suzanne Laughlin

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In the 1990s Peruan officials asked themselves, “Does the country have enough resources to support the growing population?” For them the solution was preventing people from being born in the first place. Instead of investing in programs of sexual education and family planning, the government began creating legislation that implemented forced sterilization programs, claiming  that it was a progressive policy that would give women more autonomy over their bodies and consequently more choices. From 1996 to 2000, President Fujimori created a program where indigenous women from poorer, rural regions were forcibly sterilized, and medical professionals were incentivized to sterilize as many women as possible. This podcast explores themes of race, gender, and class, and how population control measures disproportionately targeted poor indigenous communities. Over 250,000 women were sterilized during this period. Several of their testimonies will be highlighted in the podcast.

Further Reading 

Carranza Ko, Ñusta P. “Making the Case for Genocide, the Forced Sterilization of Indigenous Peoples of Peru.” Genocide Studies and Prevention: An International Journal 14, no. 2 (2020): 90-103. Accessed November 16, 2020. doi: 10.5038/1911-9933.14.2.1740 


Gilmore, S, and L Moffett. “Redressing forced sterilisation: the role of the medical profession.” BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology 127, no. 8 (2020): 923-926. Accessed November 16, 2020. doi:10.1111/1471-0528.16204. 


Journeyman Pictures. “Peru’s Shocking Mass Sterilization of Women.” 1999. Video. 


Lizarzaburu, Javier. “Forced Sterilisation Haunts Peruvian Women Decades on.” BBC. December 2, 2015. Accessed November 16, 2020. 


Pieper Mooney, Jadwiga E. “Re-visiting Histories of Modernization, Progress, and (Unequal) Citizenship Rights: Coerced Sterilization in Peru and in the United States: Coerced Sterilization in Peru and in the United States.” University of Arizona (2010): 1036-1054. Accessed November 16, 2020. doi: 10.1111/j.1478-0542.2010.00717.x



Khalafnasirs. “Jump to the Moon.” CCMixter. Uploaded October 15, 2020.