Rural Indigenous Women and Feminist Politics in Andean Ecuador
Dr. O'Connor receives ROW grant this summer to work on study entitled: Rural Indigenous Women and Feminist Politics in Andean Ecuador.
Dr. O'Connor is collecting the life histories of indigenous Kichwa women who have served or are currently serving as municipal government council members in order to explore their personal journeys into the formal political sector.
In Ecuador indigenous people, especially women, have been excluded from the political sphere. In the 1980s indigenous people gained the right to vote, and since the 1990s they have organized several nation-wide political protests and pushed for civil and cultural rights. In 1998, indigenous political parties were formed and a new constitution set electoral quotas, which means that a certain percentage of candidates must now be women. So indigenous women in politics relatively new and represents a historical shift that can be documented through life histories.