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Gender and the flower industry in Ecuador

by Noël, Nicole

Abstract (Summary)
Since the 1980s many countries in Latin Amenca have attempted to deal with debt and econornic crises through a variety of mesures. One of these has been the promotion of non-traditional agricultural exports. In Ecuador the most dynamic of these crogs in tenns of growth has been fiesh cut flowers. The flower plantations which have sprung up mainly in the highlands near Quito employ thousands of people, the majority of them women. This thesis looks at the effects this employment has had on a smail number of women in El Rosario. an indigenous rural cornmunity near Cayambe. Ecuador. The focus is on the changing gender, household and community relations of the women employed in this industry. Through an anaiysis which views the household as the location fiom which the individual is linked to the community and the larger economy we see how households are restructured according to the demands and conditions of its members. Through case studies 1 show the ambivalent relationship of the community of El Rosario towards the flower industry and those it employs: the change in women's domestic work; and, the commodification of the countryside and its effects on women's roles. Al1 of these factors will be examined in light of their vulnerability as women workers in a global economy.
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Source Type:Master's Thesis

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Date of Publication:01/01/1998

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