Women in Comparative Societies
Latin America:  Carmen Miranda on My Mind
Carmen Miranda album cover

What images and stereotypes of Latin American women do we have?

How do these measure up to the realities of women's lives in Latin America?

j lo    selena

maid in manhattan    latina maid working in US

virgin of guadaluope    argentine woman praying for John Paul II

Cultural Tendencies
    importance of
    yet also patriarchal
    and all too often violent

Political and Economic Development
Region as a whole transitioning, becoming more democratic over the latter part of the 20th Century

Historic development
    Church administration
encomienda system
    landlessness of peasant farmers

Fundemental cleavage in Latin American politics
    control over land, land reform
    control over national wealth, means of production
    "dependency theory"

Right side of the political spectrum
Wealthy landowners
The Military

Left side of the political spectrum
Peasant, "campesinos"
Marxist political parties and movements
Late 20th Century
    The Catholic Church
    Liberation Theology

Implications of these Tendencies for Women
    In Politics

    In Economy

Globalization in Latin America
Brazilian exception


EPZs exist in many Central American and Caribbean countries
Nicaragua, El Salvador, Honduras, Dominican Republic and others

alled "maquiladoras" or "maquilas" for short in N. Mexico

Story on Working Conditions in maquilas
Pay in Honduras Free Trade Zone

mex per cap income gains       mex income by region
In Favor of Free Trade Zones in Latin America
NGO aiding Women Workers in Tiajuana
Amnesty International Report on Ciudad Juarez Violence

Mexico’s New Garment Worker Movement
Enloe uses example of Mexican women garment workers as an example that perhaps this trend is changing;

What mobilized these women to organize
1985 Mexico City earthquake; horrified when soldiers helped owners “rescue” their machines before the women who were trapped under the buildings

Working in a cross-class alliance with middle-class women from Mexico City, they have succeeded in getting an officially recognized union in numerous shops.

To mitigate against criticisms that their organizing work takes them away from their family responsibilities, they created child-care at their HQ and offered it to neighborhood women activists as well;  in so doing they have launched a new wave of grass roots organizing in Mexico (creating conditions for the end of the PRI’s lockhold on the presidency and many other offices in Mexico)

Domestic Workers in US Organize
United Domestic Workers Site
Domestic Workers in Mexico