Female Presidents in Latin America

Topics: Argentina, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner Pages: 8 (1714 words) Published: May 31, 2011
The female influence in politics of Latin America

While studying Latin American region I was questioned why this region has more numbers of female presidents. Therefore, in this essay, I did some small analyze with a list of female representatives as a head of states.

I think the role of women is everywhere essential and can include significant influence as in social life so in politics. Some people argue that women’s presence in power is a simple question of fairness. Fairness that demands women to get their proper share of power regardless of whether they us this power to promote women’s interests.

Another reason is considered to be the spread of globalization. This phenomenon has given the impulse for raise of feminism in Latin American region. Therefore, the greater presence of women in national legislatures coincided with unprecedented attention to women’s rights issues like domestic violence, reproduction and family law. Women from different political parties were forming alliances to put women’s issues on the policy agenda and then to pressure their male colleagues to support changes in law.

One dramatic example of the potential changes women leaders brings comes from Mexico. In 2000, Rosario Robles, then mayor of Mexico City, broke the Latin American abortion stalemate by introducing legislation to modify the city’s criminal code on abortion matters. The proposal, approved through support by the PRD (Partido de la Revolución Democrática) and PRI (Partido Revolucionario Institucional) parties, legalized abortions performed if the mother’s health (not just her life) is at risk and if the fetus has birth defects. Robles accepted the long-standing feminist argument that abortion is a public health problem, since resorting to clandestine abortions poses grave risks for women’s lives and health. No other Latin American country has liberalized its abortion laws since the 1940s.

The 1990s we saw steady growth in women’s participation in political power in Latin America. The result can be women’s representation in the lower houses of congress increased from an average of 9 % in 1990 to 15 % in 2002; in the Senate, from 5 % to 12 % in 2002; and among ministers, from 9 % to13 % in 2000. These numbers put Latin America behind Europe, on par with Asia, and ahead of Africa, the Pacific and the Middle East.

It’s evident that Latin American region has more cases of female presidents at the head of the state rather in other countries. In Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Peru and Venezuela, women have run for president with a realistic chance of winning, and even did win. Dilma Rouseff of Brazil, Cristina Kirchner in Argentina, Michelle Bachelett of Chile, Laura Chinchilla in Costa Rica, Isabel Peron as a first female president of the region. In more countries, women have served as vice presidents, and women have governed the region’s (and world’s) two largest cities, Sao Paulo and Mexico City.

Herein I present summarized information about female headquarters in LA:

Dilma Rousseff, Brazil 2010

Dilma Rousseff of the ruling Workers' Party has just been elected president of Brazil - a nation of almost 200 million people, and a rising global power.

She is a career diplomat, and was - until running for the presidency - chief of staff to President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva; before that she was energy minister.

Lula gave her his full backing during the campaign and she has promised to continue his policies.

Those who know Rousseff describe her as a "tough cookie", and as a determined, pragmatic woman who likes to get things done. One of her nick-names is 'the iron lady'.

She is said to be astute, with a strategic, logical mind.

Her father was an immigrant from Bulgaria, and her mother a school teacher.

While a student in the 1960s, she joined the left-wing armed resistance against the military dictatorship.

Although she says she was never involved in violence herself, she was seen as a key...
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