Catalogue


Dolor y alegría : women and social change in urban Mexico /
Sarah LeVine in collaboration with Clara Sunderland Correa.
imprint
Madison, Wis. : University of Wisconsin Press, c1993.
description
xi, 239 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
0299137902 : 0299137945 (pbk.) :
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
series title
imprint
Madison, Wis. : University of Wisconsin Press, c1993.
isbn
0299137902 : 0299137945 (pbk.) :
catalogue key
3313592
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 221-230) and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Sarah LeVine is research associate at the Harvard Graduate School of Education Clara Sunderland Correa is a child therapist in private practice in Mexico
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1993-11:
LeVine's highly readable study of 15 mestizo women from the ages of 19 to 73 illustrates how urbanization and rapid social change--particularly massive expansions in the educational and health care systems--have affected the lives of working-class Mexican women. Spanning the period from the 1920s to the 1970s, their stories are skillfully interwoven within the context of Mexico's dynamic postrevolutionary history. Their histories are organized around the themes of early childhood; adolescence (including sexual development); courtship and marriage; pregnancy, childbirth, motherhood and child rearing (including birth control, health care and schooling); widowhood and old age. Although they are not self-consciously feminist in any sense, nor aware of or connected to the women's movement of middle-class Mexican women, the younger women in this study seem less willing to accept traditional roles and relationships with husbands, other authority figures, and even their own children. All levels. E. Hu-DeHart; University of Colorado at Boulder
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, November 1993
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Summaries
Main Description
InDolor y AlegrÍa(Sorrow and Joy), fifteen mothers, grandmothers, and great grandmothers in the Mexican city of Cuernavaca speak about the dramatic effects that urbanization and rapid social change have had on their lives. Sarah LeVine deftly combines these autobiographical vignettes with ethnographic material, survey findings, and her own observations. The result is a vivid picture of contrast and continuity. While many earlier publications have focused on the poor of Latin America who live at the margins of urban life, Dolor y AlegrÍa explores the experiences of ordinary working and lower-middle class women, most of them transplants from villages and small towns to a densely populated city neighborhood. In their early years, many experienced family disruption, emotional deprivation, and economic hardship; but steadily increasing educational opportunities, improved health care, and easily available contraception have significantly altered how the younger women relate to their families and the larger society. Today's Mexican schoolgirl, LeVine shows, is encouraged to apply herself to her studies for her own benefit, and the longer she remains in school, the greater the self-confidence she will carry with her into the world of work and later into marriage and motherhood. Hard economic times have forced many married women into the workplace where their sense of personal efficacy is enhanced; at the same time, in the domestic sphere, their earnings allow them greater negotiating power with husbands and male relatives. Changes are not confined to the younger generation. Older women are enjoying better health and living longer; but with adult children either less able or willing to accept responsibility for aged parents than they were in the past, anxiety runs high and family relations are often strained. Dolor y AlegrÍatakes a close look at the efforts of three generations of Mexican women to redefine themselves in both family and workplace; it shows that today's young woman has very different expectations of herself and others from those that her grandmother or even her mother had.
Main Description
In Dolor y Alegría (Sorrow and Joy), fifteen mothers, grandmothers, and great grandmothers in the Mexican city of Cuernavaca speak about the dramatic effects that urbanization and rapid social change have had on their lives. Sarah LeVine deftly combines these autobiographical vignettes with ethnographic material, survey findings, and her own observations. The result is a vivid picture of contrast and continuity. While many earlier publications have focused on the poor of Latin America who live at the margins of urban life, Dolor y Alegría explores the experiences of ordinary working and lower-middle class women, most of them transplants from villages and small towns to a densely populated city neighborhood. In their early years, many experienced family disruption, emotional deprivation, and economic hardship; but steadily increasing educational opportunities, improved health care, and easily available contraception have significantly altered how the younger women relate to their families and the larger society. Today's Mexican schoolgirl, LeVine shows, is encouraged to apply herself to her studies for her own benefit, and the longer she remains in school, the greater the self-confidence she will carry with her into the world of work and later into marriage and motherhood. Hard economic times have forced many married women into the workplace where their sense of personal efficacy is enhanced; at the same time, in the domestic sphere, their earnings allow them greater negotiating power with husbands and male relatives. Changes are not confined to the younger generation. Older women are enjoying better health and living longer; but with adult children either less able or willing to accept responsibility for aged parents than they were in the past, anxiety runs high and family relations are often strained. Dolor y Alegría takes a close look at the efforts of three generations of Mexican women to redefine themselves in both family and workplace; it shows that today's young woman has very different expectations of herself and others from those that her grandmother or even her mother had.
Table of Contents
Illustrationsp. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introduction: The Mexican Woman in Historical Perspectivep. 3
Ninez: Childhood from the 1920s to the 1970sp. 28
Ya Soy Senorita: Adolescence and Courtshipp. 52
La Vida de Casada: Expectations and Realities of Marriagep. 79
Con Todos Estos Chamacos: Child Rearing in the Cityp. 140
Se Acaba la Lucha: Widowhood and Old Agep. 178
Cumplir o Exigir? Urban Women in the 1990sp. 195
Postscript 1991p. 206
Notesp. 211
Bibliographyp. 221
Indexp. 231
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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