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Old 05-17-2004, 07:47 PM   #1
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What Globalization Can Do to Women

My papers on neoliberalism (which is the World Bank and IMF policy of forcing nations to open their markets and privatize everything, whether or not it makes sense for that specific nation, and regardless of if they're ready or not) this term were fun to write. Thought I'd share a bit of them, as they relate to much that is discussed here.

A snip from one paper:
Finally, the gendered nature of neo-liberal economic policies is a particularly vital theme of these essays. Essentially neo-liberal global capitalism depends on women to contribute a vast amount of unpaid or underpaid labor. In, “The Limits of Microcredit”, Poster and Salime write that “[World Bank and IMF] programs for allocating loans to poor countries and the attached debt repayment policies have devastated local economies, particularly by requiring governments to…suspend social services….Women are hit hardest by such measures. They face an intensified burden from taking on second jobs, a reduction in food and clothing as the limited household resources typically go to men, and an increase in violence” (190). Structural adjustment programs which force state retreat from involvement in the global markets also impact women more than men, as the burden of housework, child care and care of the sick and elderly fall upon women and girls. Thus when states cut these programs, women’s opportunities and options vanish.


And a snip from another:
I also particularly appreciated Mittleman's point that globalization is not gender-neutral. As he notes, and numerous other feminist scholars have as well, the unpaid labor which women are implicitly expected to do, combined with cutbacks in social programs forced by IMF Structural Adjustment Programmes, effect women disproportionately. As one manager phrased it, women “endure poverty well” (86). Indeed, Mittleman echoes and reinforces other studies when he notes that “a regime of patriarchal discipline is reproduced in the factories” (86). He also notes what has been called the “double shift” women are often forced to work as a direct result of globalized neoliberal policies: they must continue with their culturally demanded duties of house, child, elderly and sick care. Yet they must also work, as their husbands are not present, or do not earn enough to support the family alone. Despite this reality, women are paid as secondary wage earners (87-89). These and other factors combined to place women in deeply vulnerable positions, marginalized positions within Mittleman’s GDLP (global division of labor and power).


Hope you enjoy! I'd love to hear your thoughts!

SD
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Old 05-18-2004, 09:53 AM   #2
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Ladies always get the worst of the burden
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Old 05-18-2004, 03:55 PM   #3
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Absolutely, and it has everything to do with constructed cultural assumptions about what's "natural" for a women to do.

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Old 05-21-2004, 02:30 PM   #4
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I definitely prefer women. They rock.
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Old 05-21-2004, 03:06 PM   #5
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There is so much bad news right now. I received my exchange yesterday and it was devoted to Oxfam's work on women's issues. So some good news!

http://www.oxfamamerica.org/advocacy/art7175.html

Mozambique's Gender Revolution
April 30, 2004

After four years of campaigning, Oxfam's partners have won a landmark legal victory for the eight million women of Mozambique.

by Kevin T. Pepper

On December 9, 2003, the National Assembly of Mozambique passed a new Family Law, securing a broad range of rights previously denied to Mozambican women. The new Family Law raises the minimum age of marriage from 14 to 18, allows women to inherit property in the case of divorce, and legally recognizes traditional marriages which constitute the great majority of marriages in Mozambique.

This progressive legislation, drafted by an Oxfam-supported women's coalition, marks a huge step forward for the women of Mozambique, who have long suffered profound discrimination. What's more, lawyers speculate the Family Law will serve as a precedent on which future gains in gender legal reform can be built.

To drive this victory, Oxfam brought together a coalition of five women's rights groups to pool their resources and push for legal reform. Since 1998, Oxfam has invested over $500,000 dollars in the women's coalition, funding research, legal services, and other activities. Oxfam also provided training in advocacy, community building, and organizing and helped the coalition further its advocacy strategy by targeting key legislators and Parliamentarians to ensure the law would be passed.

But credit goes largely to the women's groups who coordinated hundreds of workshops, interviews, and focus groups to gather information from thousands of women around the need for legal reform. They then disseminated this information through print, radio, and TV ads. They also used the information to shape the draft of the Family Law that they submitted to Parliament and that was ultimately passed.
...
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Old 05-22-2004, 10:20 AM   #6
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Thanks for the good news SW! Always nice to hear, and important to remember!

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Old 05-23-2004, 03:42 PM   #7
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This new family law sounds good.

SD... good work.

you are blessed.
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Old 05-23-2004, 04:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sherry Darling
Absolutely, and it has everything to do with constructed cultural assumptions about what's "natural" for a women to do.
Indeed. Although the universal subordination of women theory does have its exceptions... few, but there are satellite societies that operate under terms that don't marginalize women economically (and in some cases politically). I'm personally not convinced that there is an innate human quality that is the sole reason for the generalized suppression of women.

Anyway, good to see hiphop.

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Old 05-24-2004, 10:02 AM   #9
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Yes, it is always good to see Hip Hop. Thanks for your kind words!

Pinball, what inate quality would that be? Anything specific or just thinking "out loud"?

Cheryl
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Old 05-24-2004, 03:35 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sherry Darling
Pinball, what inate quality would that be? Anything specific or just thinking "out loud"?
Probably more the latter. I'm just referring to how many (not all)anthropologists, humanists, and various other -ists have tried to underpin humanity under one streaming theory (especially with regards to gender). My point wasn't entirely relevant to the thread, just a good exercise of my consciousness. Or lack thereof...

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Old 05-25-2004, 09:24 AM   #11
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Right, they try to creat a metanarrative. Those dont' usually work well.

Thanks for the reply!

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Old 05-25-2004, 09:58 AM   #12
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If we want to isolate women as a group and look at them on their own, I agree with you. As a whole, we're no more hard done by than others. But then it becomes comparing fruit so is pointless anyway.


Good stuff though Sherry!
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