Out in Nicaragua: Local and Transnational Desires after the Revolution

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Essay Excerpt

For over a decade, I have observed the particular way that Nicaraguan women and men have negotiated the terrain of same-sex sexual politics. Whereas men's everyday sex lives have received public and scholarly attention, women's social activism around sexual politics is now gaining attention in Nicaragua and is deserving of wider scholarly notice. Feminist theorists, including pioneering feminist anthropologists, have long pointed to the historical development of women's relationship to the private sphere and men's to the public sphere as contributing to their unequal power in society. Recently, however, Carla Freeman (2001) has shown that a related assumption that women are more closely linked with the local and men are linked to the global has contributed to the undertheorization of women's participation in globalization processes. I want to suggest that the Nicaraguan case in question warrants attention precisely because, somewhat contrary to expectation, it has been men's widespread local same-sex practices that have often obscured women's local and global activism around lesbian and gay issues. My intervention in Latin American sexuality studies is to call for a closer examination of women and gender differences, not simply to be more inclusive, but because this is necessary if we are to understand both local sexual practices and transnational political movements (304-305).

Babb, Florence. "Out in Nicaragua: Local and Transnational Desires after the Revolution." Cultural Anthropology 18.3 (2003): 304-328.

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