The New Image of The Woman / Rebeca Monzo

Work on fabric, by Rebeca

Much has been said about the new image of the Cuban woman. In official spheres they speak of the revolutionary woman, mother, comrade, worker, housewife. But what’s certain is that, more and more, our women suffer transformations that are detrimental to their appearance and self-esteem.

A free woman is not a woman who tosses out profanities, gesturing, yelling, and baring her anatomy, or who wears a uniform to prove how free she is. A free woman, in my opinion, is someone who doesn’t undermine her public image, who behaves socially according to the most basic and simple rules of education, dresses neatly but humbly, according to where she works or is going, who curbs her tongue and tries to enrich it, not with swear words, but with simple and friendly words to others, treating everyone equally, showing care in the details. To be equal to men we don’t have to lose our femininity, it’s enough to demand equality of rights and duties and above all to respect ourselves.

One of the most common phenomena is the degradation of the image of women, here on my planet, it has been, among many others, through the brutal scarcities we have seen ourselves steadily subject to, being women, of course, the most vulnerable, precisely because without any doubt we are the gender most obliged to ensure the social ravages: scarcities of the most intimate personal articles, absence in the home of the father figure because of the sugar harvests, the wars on other continents, the international missions, and so on, where the woman is left alone at home with the children and the elderly, without the ability to go to work to help sustain the family economically.

On the other hand, the absence of information (this includes especially women’s magazines), as well as the abundance of negative examples in the media, in terms of the gestures and clothing seen in video-clips which sadly have been taken by the population as the standards of fashion, without taking into account that one thing is the ordinary daily clothing for work, whether in an office or factory or a doctor’s clinic or something else very different, is that used for fiction. Not to mention how insulting it is to show women as ornaments or objects for pleasure that are for sale.

We are those, precisely, who have to fight to be treated with respect and consideration by men, respecting ourselves and showing our intellectual and working capacity, just to be, without any doubt, those who bear the major social weight.

September 1 2011