Grandmother Power: A Global Phenomenon

Paola Gianturco. powerHouse (Random, dist.), $49.95 (256p) ISBN 978-1-57687-611-4
When Siphiwe Hlophe lost her scholarship for graduate studies after testing HIV positive, she launched an organization in Swaziland that currently has 9,500 members, most of whom, like her, are grandmothers raising children whose parents died of AIDS. In Canada, the Grandmother-to-Grandmother program provides financial assistance to African grandmothers caring for AIDs orphans and fosters bonds of friendship. While grandmothers have traditionally been the support of beleaguered families, photographer-documentarian Gianturco (Women Who Light the Dark) contends that this is the first time they have campaigned universally for political, social, and economic change. It is not necessary to share Gianturco’s belief in the existence of a worldwide grandmothers movement to be inspired and often charmed by the 120 courageous women she has interviewed and photographed, among them the Abuelas of the Plaza de Mayo who search for and find missing grandchildren stolen from their families during Argentina’s murderous military dictatorship and the sari-clad Grandmother Solar Engineers from India who bring electricity to hundreds of villages off the grid in Asia and Africa. Visually captivating, this is an excellent gift book for feminists and other progressives with global perspective. Royalties from the book’s sale will be donated to the Stephen Lewis Foundation’s Grandmothers to Grandmothers campaign. 225 color photos. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/10/2012
Release date: 09/18/2012
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