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date: 16 June 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines how feminist scholars theorize the concept and subject of policy, starting from the main conceptualization of policy and non-feminist theoretical approaches to it, and then discussing the constructivist turn in both non-feminist and feminist theoretical approaches to policy. It traces how the latter demonstrate that policies are “gendered” and “gendering” constructions embedded in underlying norms that tend to perpetuate unequal power hierarchies between women and men. Since most feminist theorizations of policy, implicitly or explicitly, are focused on power, the chapter also addresses feminist approaches to power and their contribution to theorizing policy. Finally, it shows how feminist theorizing of policy improves the quality of policies, which is relevant to produce policies that can promote greater equality.

Keywords: equality policies, gendered policies, policy, policy evaluation, policymaking, policymakers intentionality, unintentionality, quality of policy

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