Cuba And Its Progress Towards Gender Equality

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The Cuban Revolution was one, maybe even the greatest political and economical revolution in Latin American History. Overthrown president Fulgencio Batista was replaced with Fidel Castro, put the poor, especially women, people of color, victims of discrimination as the main focus of his goal to bring equality to all in Cuba. The Revolution “of the humble, by the humble and for the humble” was designed to pave the way for the new era to come. One of freedom and and equality away from the injustice past and unfair structure of the country.

Women were the very first priority when it came to the new government. In 1960 the FMC was created (Federación de Mujeres Cubanas) which translates to the Federation of Cuban Women. Although founded by Fidel Castro its president was Vilma Espin Dubois, The wonderful wife of Raul Castro who was a committed activist against the government of Fulgencio Batista. What were women treated like before the revolution? What were they ways to go out with to get rid of these old ideas of women and implement equal rights and opportunity to men and women and to erase prejudice and stereotypes?

Firstly, precise attention was given to the role of women before the Cuban Revolution. Secondly, The new government’s action to get rid of these past stereotypes and prevent further inequality from happening and finally the benefit that its had on society and politics in the analysis of Cuban Woman today and there input into the economical political and social life of the country.

During the government ruled by Fulgencio Batista’s regime, which lasted between 1952 – 1958, Cuban women lived under patriarchal society. Women were only a part of 17% of the labor force. Very few of the women’s population were employed but those who were made significantly less than men did with very similar work. While not only having to worry about work the culture was that woman were at the disposal of men were responsible for household tasks and taking care of children and making food for the man all on their own. Although illiteracy wasn’t uncommon it was significantly less likely for a woman to become literate. Out of 6 million people were lived in cuba, only 55% of children were attending school. Thousands were straight up denied access to education. Illiteracy was a plague among all but the majority were women.

Although Women had the right to vote in 1934. The political role for woman was scarce. From 1934 to 1958, only 26 women held legislative positions. Despite this Cuban women had a major role in the insurgency against Fulgencio Batista. In September 1958, after creation of the female military scadrun called the “Mariana Grajales”, Cuban Women joined Fidel Castro troops in the revolutionary movement several well known female figures including Vilma Espin Dubois the president of FMC. Although this fight isn’t purely for women’s rights Maruja Iglesias states “we are not fighting for women’s right. We are fighting for the rights of everyone”.

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