GSWS 527 - Market Women & Madames

PRING 2017: Market Women, Madames, Mistresses & Mother Superior studies ender, labor, sexuality, and race in the Caribbean. In our historical xamination of primary source documents alongside literature, and popular edia, we will question some of the iconic representations of Caribbean and atin American women in order to understand the meaning, purpose and usages hese women s bodies as objects of praise, possession, obsession and/or idicule by communities, governments and religions within and outside of th egion. Beginning in the late-18th century and ending with contemporary igration narratives, this course considers the relationship between slave ociety and colonial pasts on gender performance in the modern Caribbean, atin America, and their diasporas. In our interrogation of gender meanings, we will consider the ways Caribbean women and men define themselves and each other, while considering the intersections of color, class, religion and culture on the political and social realities of the Caribbean and the region. The geographic scope of the course will extend to Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Costa Rica and Trinidad & Tobago. The following interrelated questions will anchor our exploration of each text: How have representations of Caribbean and Latin American women informed historical constructions and rhetoric of the region and national identity? What political and social strategies have Caribbean women and men used to define themselves in their countries and throughout the region? How do the history and contemporary conditions of a post-colonial nation impact the gender construction of Caribbean identities? What is the relationship between modern Caribbean gender identities and the regional racial and economic politics?
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