Society for the Anthropology of Europe
Volunteered - Oral Presentation Session
“Anti-genderism” has been one of the recent expressions of right-populist and Christian conservative movement, seeing gender as an ideology destroying the family and originating in a conspiracy net. While “anti-genderism” has been analyzed as the means of resistance to neoliberal globalization both in Europe and USA, the central place of the concept of gender in it and the function of knowledge needs more attention. The paper addresses a case of debating gender-based violence policy in Latvia, looking at the role and kinds of knowledge in claiming particular social orders. Based on ethnographic material, I argue that value-power has effectively replaced knowledge-power relation in populist epistemology of violence. Gender, Europe, liberalism along with poverty, alcohol abuse and other social negations have become the negative pole of values automatically responsible for violence while positively defined traditions, culture and family are seen as ultimate solutions in restoring the order. This bears two consequences – firstly, it dislodges the knowledge from its empirical grounds and, secondly, diminishes the role of academia in claiming the production of knowledge.