Western University Political ScienceFaculty of Social Science

Veronica Schild

Professor Emeritus


PhD, University of Toronto
E-mail: vschild@uwo.ca

Research Interests

Professor Schild specializes in Latin American and Comparative politics, and in contemporary critical theory, with an emphasis on feminist issues, neoliberal governmentality, and citizenship.

Current Research Projects

1. Securing Citizens and Entrenching Inequalities: The Janus-Faced Neoliberal State in Latin America

This article-in-progress  challenges the characterization of neoliberal states either as “masculinist” states or as “punitive” states.   It concludes that neoliberal policies are of two kinds, punitive and caring, and that the legacies of a transnationalized, liberal variant of feminism, loom large in the present efforts of social and political regulation of  subjects in Latin America.   This article, and the research it is based on, are the basis for a comparative book-length manuscript I am preparing.  It is supported by funds from DesiguALdades.net, Research Network on Interdependent Inequalities in Latin America Freie Universität, Berlin.

2. Gender, Sexuality and Struggles for Justice in Latin America:  Legal, Political and Social Dimension

As Co-Chair of the Gender and Feminist Studies Section of the Latin American Studies Association (2012-2013), I am co-organizing with the Sexualities Section the conference “Gender, Sexuality and Struggles for Justice in Latin America:  Legal, Political and Social Dimension.”  The conference is sponsored by the Washington College of Law Impact Litigation Project and American University Center for Latin American and Latino Studies.   Through an examination of legal struggles in gender and sexuality rights ,and what these mean for the concrete struggles of gendered, sexualized, and racialized social groups,  the possibilities and limitations of legal activism for the pursuit of social justice and equity issues will be discussed. The conference will take place on May 19 2013, in Washington, D.C. 

3. Latin American Critical Feminism and the ‘New Spirit’ of Capitalism: A Rejoinder to Nancy Fraser

This article-in-progress develops an argument for the need to rekindle a critical feminism in light of the troubling entanglements between the legacies of nearly forty years of feminist activism and neoliberal, global capitalism.  It challenges Nancy Fraser’s own conclusions on the subject of the “dangerous laisson” between feminism and neoliberalism for their eurocentrism.   And, it concludes with the more modest proposal, in line with post-colonial debates in philosophy, of a historically rooted and embodied conversation about culturally distinct and incommensurable phenomena.  This article is an outcome of research activities during my tenure as Director of the Centre for the Study of Theory and Criticism at Western (2006-2011)

4. Contradictions of Emancipation: The Women's Movement, Culture, and the State in Contemporary Chile

I am completing this book under contract with Duke University Press which challenges the dominant, self-congratulatory narrative of the evolution, fate and outcomes of nearly 40 years of feminist activism in Chile.   It describes the political and class-based cultural practices, conflicts and divisions that converged in a broad women’s movement during Pinochet’s dictatorship. It also analyses the fate and legacies of feminist discourses and activism in the subsequent period of centre-left political rule.  Its main conclusion is that the reconfiguration of the Chilean social state, or its “neoliberalisation”,  is  the result of the convergence of dominant, liberal feminist ideas and legacies of women’s movement activism.   The language of contention of feminism, in other words, has been transformed into a language of regulation and gender normalization.

5. German Research Projects

a) Since 2010 I have been a Fellow of the interdisciplinary research project International Research Network desiguALdades.net housed at the Freie Universität Berlin, and funded by the Freie Universität Berlin, Ibero Amerikanisches Institut – Preussischer Kulturbesitz, German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

b) During a first leave from Western (Fall 2012) I was Visiting Research Fellow of the DesiguALdades.net, Research Network (October 1 to December 7, 2012) and then again from May 1 to July 1 2013. I was funded to develop the research project:   “Securing Citizens and Entrenching Inequalities: The Janus-Faced Neoliberal State in Latin America.” 

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

Refereed Book Chapters

Book Chapters

Recent Conference Presentations

Invited Presentations & Lectures

Awards and Distinctions