The Impact of Globalization on the Americas:
An Undergraduate Conference on Scholarship and Career Paths
Michigan State University October 23 – 24, 2003
allowed or encouraged larger numbers of female combatants and globalization andinternational interaction has steadily transformed revolutionary rhetoric in all parts of theworld, specifically in Latin America in the later part of the 20
century and hasfundamentally altered in posture towards women in armed conflict. Three conflicts of the last century have contributed particularly meaningful elements towards the recentevolution of women’s place in the history of Latin American revolutionary conflict: theMexican Revolution of 1910-1914, the Cuban Revolution of 1959, and the NicaraguanRevolution on 1979.
The Mexican Revolution
Social Context and Roles in the Fighting: Mexico in the early 20
century was avastly polarized society with great demographic differences between the urban and ruralspheres. For women who participated in the Mexican Revolution, their roles in theconflict were greatly determined by their class, race and other factors. Women of thecountryside, most likely poor, uneducated, and of mixed race or indigenous decent, areoften described as being "swept up" by the revolution. In other words, these womenwere not in a position to
to participate for political or ideological reasons, butwere instead implicated for more localized reasons of economical or personalrelationships. These women, called
, followed the soldiers as the armytraveled across the country and "…forged for food, cooked meals, nursed the wounded,washed clothes, collected the soldiers’ salaries, and performed a multitude of tasks notprovided by the Mexican military…"
Some women aided the troops in this way becauseof their relationship to a particular soldier (a husband, lover, son, brother, etc.). Many
Emergence of the Modern Mexican Woman: her participation in Revolution and Struggle for equality, 1910-1940
(Denver, Colorado: Arden Press, 1990), 43-4