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The Paradox of PaternalismWomen and the Politics of Authoritarianism in the Dominican Republic$
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Elizabeth S. Manley

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780813054292

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813054292.001.0001

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Gendering the History of Dictatorship and Transnational Politics

(p.1) Introduction
The Paradox of Paternalism

Elizabeth S. Manley

University Press of Florida

The introductory chapter presents the two main arguments of the study. First, as a result of both the Trujillo and Balaguer regimes’ efforts to uphold the Dominican Republic’s international reputation as stable and project an image of a progressive and progressing nation, women found and expanded spaces of global and transnational activism that advanced basic political rights and paved the way for the late 20th century feminist movement. Second, while the paternal constructs of rule upheld by Trujillo and Balaguer did advance women’s roles in certain arenas of society and politics, they also paradoxically enforced a superstructure that maintained a traditional understanding of women’s innate abilities as maternal public figures. It elaborates on the historiographies of Dominican women’s history, transnational feminism, and dictatorship, and lays out the structure of the subsequent chapters.

Keywords:   Trujillo, Balaguer, Dominican Republic, global and transnational activism, feminist movement, paternal constructs, maternal public figures, historiographies, transnational feminism, dictatorship

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