Candace Johnson

Candace Johnson
Department of Political Science
Phone number: 
519 824 4120 x52179
MCKN 511
Education (doctoral degree): 
PhD Dalhousie University, Political Science

Candace Johnson is a Professor of political science with expertise in gender, human rights, and maternal/ reproductive health policy. Prior to joining the faculty at the University of Guelph in 2003, she held academic positions in the Department of Government at American University in Washington, DC, and in the Department of Community Health Sciences at Brock University in St. Catharine’s, Ontario.

Professor Johnson is a political theorist who is interested in the empirical complexities of global maternal health politics and reproductive justice in comparative perspective. Her approach to research is focused on community engaged collaborations and transnational dialogue, and she is currently working with research partners in Mexico to examine the ways in which various contexts interact with reproductive autonomy.

Her book, Maternal Transition: A North-South Politics of Pregnancy and Childbirth (published by Routledge 2014 and 2016), is a comparative examination of maternal health preferences in Canada, the United States, Cuba, and Honduras and the ways in which these preferences reflect global, regional, national, and micro-scalar dynamics (the research for which was supported by a SSHRC Standard Research Grant).

She has also published more widely on women and politics, health care policy, social rights, and Latin American politics. Her latest book is a volume on Human and Environmental Justice in Guatemala, co-edited with Stephen Henighan, published by the University of Toronto Press in 2018. In 2017 and 2009, Professor Johnson was awarded the Canadian Political Science Association’s Jill Vickers Prize in recognition of her work on gender and politics, and was nominated for this award on two other occasions (in 2011 and 2015).

Her current research includes a multi-year project (funded through a SSHRC Insight Grant) on global maternal health commitments in practice, an examination of the global #MeToo movement, and a theoretical investigation of affective solidarity and transnational feminism.


Candace Johnson and Stephen Henighan, eds. Human and Environmental Justice in Guatemala. University of Toronto Press, 2018.

Maternal Transition: A North-South Politics of Pregnancy and Childbirth. New York: Routledge, 2014; 2016.

Health Care, Entitlement, and Citizenship. Toronto: The University of Toronto Press. September 2002.


Ebenezer Agyei and Candace Johnson. Forthcoming. “The Politics of Global Policy Frames: Reproductive Health and Development in Ghana." Global Health Governance.

Candace Johnson. 2019. "Responsibility, Affective Solidarity, and Transnational Maternal Feminism." Feminist Theory.

Candace Johnson. 2019. “Socially Engaged Research Across Borders: Feminist Bridges for Global Gender Justice and Human Rights.” Politics, Groups, and Identities.

Candace Johnson. 2017. “Pregnant Woman versus Mosquito: A Feminist Epidemiology of Zika Virus.” Journal of International Political Theory, 13(2): 233-250.

Candace Johnson. 2014. “Negotiating Maternal Identity: Adrienne Rich’s Legacy for Inquiry into the Political Dimensions of Pregnancy and Childbirth.” PhiloSOPHIA: A Journal of Continental Feminism, 4(1): 65-87.

Candace Johnson. 2011. “Framing for Change: Social Policy, the State, and the Federación de Mujeres Cubanas,” Cuban Studies, 42: 35-51.

Candace Johnson. 2010. “Framing and the Politics of Public Health: An Examination of Competing Health Narratives in Honduras.” Global Public Health, 5(1): 1-14.

Candace Johnson. 2009. “Women, Policy Development, and the Evolving Health Frame in Cuba.” Canadian Woman Studies, 27(1): 63-68.

Candace Johnson. 2008. “The Political ‘Nature’ of Pregnancy and Childbirth.” Canadian Journal of Political Science, 41(4): 889-913.

Candace Johnson. 2006. “Health as Culture and Nationalism in Cuba.” Canadian Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Studies, 31(61): 91-113.

Candace Johnson. 2002. “Health as Citizenship Narrative.” Polity, 34(3): 355-370.

Candace Johnson. 2002. “Health Care as Citizenship Development: Examining Social Rights and Entitlement.” Canadian Journal of Political Science, 35(1): 103-125.

Candace Johnson. 1999. “Rationing Care in the Community: Engaging Citizens in Health Care Decision Making.” Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law, 24(6): 1363-1389.

Book Chapters

“Introduction: Transitional, Transnational, and Distributive Justice in Post-War Guatemala.” In Human and Environmental Justice in Guatemala. Stephen Henighan and Candace Johnson, eds. University of Toronto Press, 2018.

“Conclusion.” With Stephen Henighan. In Human and Environmental Justice in Guatemala. Stephen Henighan and Candace Johnson, eds. University of Toronto Press, 2018.

“Conceptualizing Transnational Civil Society in Guatemala.” In Re-Imagining Communities and Civil Society in Latin America and the Caribbean, Roberta Rice and Gordana Yovanovich, eds. Routledge, 2016.

Candace Johnson and Surma Das. 2014. “The Human Rights Framing of Maternal Health: A Strategy for Politicization or a Path to Genuine Empowerment?” In The Uses and Misuses of Human Rights: A Critical Approach to Advocacy. George Andreopoulos and Zehra Arat, eds. Palgrave.

“Reproducing inequality and identity: An intersectional analysis of maternal health preferences.” In Fertile Ground: Exploring Reproduction in Canada, Stephanie Patterson, Francesca Scala, and Marlene Sokolon, eds. McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2014.

“The Political ‘Nature’ of Pregnancy and Childbirth.” In Coming to Life, Philosophies of Pregnancy, Childbirth and Mothering, Sarah LaChance Adams and Caroline Lundquist, eds. Fordham University Press, 2012, chapter 9. Reprint.

“Health as Citizenship Narrative.” Health Politics and Policy, volume 2: Tensions in Health Policy: Ethics, Interests, and the Public. Sue Tolleson-Rinehart and Mark Peterson, eds. Sage Publications, 2011. Reprint.

“Entitlement Beyond the Family: Global Rights Commitments and Children’s Health Policy in Canada.” Book chapter invited for edited volume, Children’s Rights: Theories, Policies and Interventions, Tom O’Neill and Dawn Zinga eds. University of Toronto Press, 2008, 115-136.

"Health Care Politics and the Intergovernmental Framework in Canada." In Tom McIntosh, Pierre-Gerlier Forest and Greg Marchildon, eds., Health Care and the Distribution of Powers in Canada. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2004, 199-223.