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Compañeras: Zapatista Women's Stories

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Guerrilla insurgents. Political leaders. Promoters of health and education. Members of economic cooperatives. These are just some of the prominent, everyday roles held by women in the Zapatista autonomous region in Chiapas, where women’s participation has proved indispensable to the creation and maintenance of an alternative, democratic society.    Compañeras is the untold s Guerrilla insurgents. Political leaders. Promoters of health and education. Members of economic cooperatives. These are just some of the prominent, everyday roles held by women in the Zapatista autonomous region in Chiapas, where women’s participation has proved indispensable to the creation and maintenance of an alternative, democratic society.    Compañeras is the untold story of the women of the Zapatista movement, gathered by longtime community organizer Hilary Klein. The Zapatista women’s own recollections of their lives, struggles, and critical involvement bring to light the tremendous transformation of gender roles that has occurred in this culture of revolution, and are instructive for everyone committed to examining how existing grassroots alternatives to global capitalism can guide the way toward justice, equality, and democracy.


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Guerrilla insurgents. Political leaders. Promoters of health and education. Members of economic cooperatives. These are just some of the prominent, everyday roles held by women in the Zapatista autonomous region in Chiapas, where women’s participation has proved indispensable to the creation and maintenance of an alternative, democratic society.    Compañeras is the untold s Guerrilla insurgents. Political leaders. Promoters of health and education. Members of economic cooperatives. These are just some of the prominent, everyday roles held by women in the Zapatista autonomous region in Chiapas, where women’s participation has proved indispensable to the creation and maintenance of an alternative, democratic society.    Compañeras is the untold story of the women of the Zapatista movement, gathered by longtime community organizer Hilary Klein. The Zapatista women’s own recollections of their lives, struggles, and critical involvement bring to light the tremendous transformation of gender roles that has occurred in this culture of revolution, and are instructive for everyone committed to examining how existing grassroots alternatives to global capitalism can guide the way toward justice, equality, and democracy.

30 review for Compañeras: Zapatista Women's Stories

  1. 5 out of 5

    julieta

    Un libro inspirador y emocionante, sobre la lucha de las mujeres zapatistas. La lucha por la dignidad del pueblo indígena, pero también por las mujeres. No se puede pensar en un movimiento feminista mexicano sin la lucha de las mujeres en el EZLN, por el cambio que se ha hecho en sus comunidades, pero desde sus parejas con sus compañeros, sus familias, y principalmente, en ellas. Todas las luchas se unen, las luchas contra el patriarcado, y para mejorar la vida de las mujeres indígenas, y de tod Un libro inspirador y emocionante, sobre la lucha de las mujeres zapatistas. La lucha por la dignidad del pueblo indígena, pero también por las mujeres. No se puede pensar en un movimiento feminista mexicano sin la lucha de las mujeres en el EZLN, por el cambio que se ha hecho en sus comunidades, pero desde sus parejas con sus compañeros, sus familias, y principalmente, en ellas. Todas las luchas se unen, las luchas contra el patriarcado, y para mejorar la vida de las mujeres indígenas, y de todas las mujeres. Muy conmovedor y hermoso.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Matty Norris

    A great introduction to Zapatista history. Written by an American white woman who lived in Chiapas for 6(?) years and took oral history accounts throughout Zapatista communities. This brings both an odd ethnographic tone (especially if you are coming from having read Zapatista communiqués), but also a refreshing, communal telling of the Zapatista story. I would recommend alongside The Thirteenth Steele and the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle.

  3. 5 out of 5

    James Tracy

    Excellent book! I interviewed Hilary Klein for In These Times. Check it out before it is crowded out by all the articles on Bernie Sanders: http://inthesetimes.com/article/18812... Excellent book! I interviewed Hilary Klein for In These Times. Check it out before it is crowded out by all the articles on Bernie Sanders: http://inthesetimes.com/article/18812...

  4. 4 out of 5

    Javiera

    Excellent detailed account of feminism in Mexico. Highly recommend.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Nicole

    Powerful narratives of Zapatista women fighting within the struggle. Inspires me as a woman to do more and realize my power.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Welker

    Informative, profound, inspiring.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Literary Adventures

    Before reading this book, I knew very little (actually nothing) about the Zapatista women and the EZLN. This book is really well written and informative. The women's testimonies are insightful and spread hope that things can be changed. Hilary Klein tells the history of the movement, how the EZLN has encouraged women to participate, the difficulties encountered by women, how they have managed step by step to change things, etc. A book definitely worth reading and inspiring. Before reading this book, I knew very little (actually nothing) about the Zapatista women and the EZLN. This book is really well written and informative. The women's testimonies are insightful and spread hope that things can be changed. Hilary Klein tells the history of the movement, how the EZLN has encouraged women to participate, the difficulties encountered by women, how they have managed step by step to change things, etc. A book definitely worth reading and inspiring.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Marian Willeke

    "My name is Ester, but that is not important now. I am a Zapatista, but that is not important now either. I am indigenous and I am a woman --- --- that is all that matters right now." This book is a beautiful representation of an indigenous tribe who suffered colonization into the twentieth century, and the two decades of low-intensity conflict they've experienced since. I completely acknowledge that as a white middle class American, I am privileged by the very fact of existing. It hurts to watch "My name is Ester, but that is not important now. I am a Zapatista, but that is not important now either. I am indigenous and I am a woman --- --- that is all that matters right now." This book is a beautiful representation of an indigenous tribe who suffered colonization into the twentieth century, and the two decades of low-intensity conflict they've experienced since. I completely acknowledge that as a white middle class American, I am privileged by the very fact of existing. It hurts to watch people suffer simply for being born. To watch people be hated because what they are, and not even seen for who they are. This book will bring any self-aware human to their knees with grief that a group of people could experience this conflict in our currently "modern" world. I put quotes to represent the fact that the Zapatistas are not alone. Their mantra of "the voice of the voiceless" is amazing and reflects their actions. They have made social improvements for themselves with active resistance from the Mexican government in only a couple of generations - improvements that has taken many more generations for other marginalised groups. This book is complicated though, as it represents /both/ the effort of the Zapatista's /and/ the effort of women's rights. It's tightly woven together because women triggered the Zapatista movement, yet so many women still struggle for the most basic of rights - working 20 hours a day non-stop in gender roles while producing and raising babies without a voice. But it's also wonderful to see the strides forward, and the active effort to ripple the changes through the whole movement. I assigned 4 out of 5 stars simply because it was so difficult to read. This content is powerful and deserves full attention, but the flow and narrative was choppy and sometimes confusing. However, it's a wonderful representation of fighting for social freedom.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lisha Sterling

    When people think about the Zapatista revolution in Chiapas, most have mental images of armed conflict and the famous Subcomandante Marcos who was the spokesman of the revolution at its start, but there is so much more to the story. This book focuses on the ways that women engage in this liberatory movement and how women's involvement has evolved over time. Much of the book focuses on the non-violent organization of the community, a process which started ten years before the world had even heard When people think about the Zapatista revolution in Chiapas, most have mental images of armed conflict and the famous Subcomandante Marcos who was the spokesman of the revolution at its start, but there is so much more to the story. This book focuses on the ways that women engage in this liberatory movement and how women's involvement has evolved over time. Much of the book focuses on the non-violent organization of the community, a process which started ten years before the world had even heard of the Zapatistas and which continues to this day in the form of the "Good Government". This book is well researched and well written.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Natalie Elizabeth

    Very thorough!! Some names and dates do get a bit confusing and dry. But the parts that focus on the strategy of the Zapatistas and how their ideology is actually put into practice is really interesting!! Good reading for those of us trying to imagine new worlds for ourselves. Seeing how others are doing it is seriously invaluable

  11. 5 out of 5

    Carinna Tarvin

    Favorite non-fiction book in a long time.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ezgi özen

    Quite informative on the history of the Zapatista movement and very interesting in the sense that it includes first hand testimonies by Zapatista women. Though sometimes a bit repetitive.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Allie Young

    Excellent book not just about EZLN from a feminist perspective but about EZLN as a whole. Very informative and powerful.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jose Bernardes

    Super job by Klein Thank you; precise and incredibly informative. Klein does a great job in describing and illustrating how lives for women changed in Chiapas after the EZLN.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Possum Paderau

  16. 5 out of 5

    Alexandra Topete

  17. 5 out of 5

    olivia

  18. 5 out of 5

    David

  19. 5 out of 5

    MikeBy

  20. 5 out of 5

    Ashley

  21. 5 out of 5

    Alexis Chavez

  22. 5 out of 5

    Clara

  23. 5 out of 5

    Karrie

  24. 4 out of 5

    Ruth Mendez

  25. 5 out of 5

    Eli

  26. 4 out of 5

    Eliza

  27. 5 out of 5

    Gayle Kimball

  28. 5 out of 5

    B Myers

  29. 5 out of 5

    Leong Ming

  30. 4 out of 5

    Krisandra Provencher

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