Synopses & Reviews
Recent discussion of postmodern culture describes a movement from center to periphery, privileging cultures that were formerly marginalized. Women and Change in the Caribbean, a study of women marginalized by both gender and race in a region such as the Caribbean--itself marginalized in global terms--attempts to extract insights relevant both within and beyond geographical confines.
This volume offers a feminist interpretation of a multicultural society emerging from colonialism and in the process of change and restructuring. The nineteen chapters include case studies of fifteen different Caribbean territories including Jamaica, Trinidad, Barbados, Puerto Rico, Grenada, and Guyana. The book is divided into two sections: the first looks at women's status and gender relations in the private and public spheres; the second looks at women's economic activity. Taking a broad pan-Caribbean comparative view contributors discuss territories with American, British, Dutch, Danish, French, and Spanish colonial traditions and current political links.
The contributors come from a range of disciplinary backgrounds including agriculture, anthropology, economics, geography, history, sociology, and women's studies.
The book was conceived because of a widely felt need to bring together scattered studies of women in all Caribbean language groups. This book examines the lives of women in the multicultural society of the contemporary Caribbean where one-third of household heads are women.
About the Author
JANET MOMSEN is Senior Lecturer in Geography at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. She is chair of the Society for Caribbean Studies and of the International Geographical Union Study Group on Gender and Geography. She is co-author of A Geography of Brazilian Development, co-editor of Geography and Gender in the Third World and of Land and Development in the Caribbean, and author of Women and Development in the Third World.
Table of Contents
Preface by Janet H. Momsen
Janet H. Momsen
Private and Public Spheres of Women's Lives
Part 1 The Domestic Domain and the Community
2 Reputation and respectability reconsidered: a new perspective on Afro-Caribbean peasant women
3 Marriage and concubinage amoung the Sephardic merchant elite of Curacao
Eva Abraham-Van der Mark
4 Changing roles in the life cycles of women in traditional West Indian houseyards
Lydia Mihelic Pulsipher
5 Women's place is every place: merging domains and women's roles in Barbuda and Dominica
Riva Berleant-Schiller and William M. Maurer
Part 2 The Intersection of Reproduction and Production
6 Women in Guadeloupe: the paradoxes of reality
7 The development and role of women's political organizations in Guyana
8 Neighbourhood networks and national politics amoung working-class Afro-Surinamese women
9 The migration experience: Nevisian women at home and abroad
Karen Fog Olwig
10 Migration, development and the gender division of labour: Puerto Rico and Margarita Island, Venezuela
Janice Monk with the late Charles S. Alexander
Economic Roles of Caribbean Women
Part 1 Rural Employment
11 Small farm food production and gender in Barbados
12 A profile of Grenadian women small farmers
John S. Brierley
13 Women in agriculture in Trinidad: An overview
Indra S. Harry
14 Women and Duban smallholder agriculture in transition
15 Development and gender divisions of labour in the rural Eastern Caribbean
Janet H. Momsen
Part 2 Urban Employment
16 Tranformation in the needle trades: women in garment and textile production in early twentieth-century Trinidad
17 Gender and ethnicity at work in a Trinidadian factory
Kevin A. Yelvington
18 Women's contribution to tourism in Negril, Jamaica
19 Gender and new technology in the Caribbean: new work for women?