Acknowledgments
I would like to thank my wife, Shoshana Sokoloff, for traveling to Ju-
chitan with me. I would also like to thank the many Juchitecas who,
impressed by her stature, patted her forearms admiringly with comments
of "iQue guapa!," thus welcoming her to her own research on midwifery.
We both owe an enormous debt of gratitude to midWives, market women,
merchants, campesinos, workers, teachers, and their families. In Juchitan
as in the nearby town of La Venta, numerous families accepted us into
their courtyards and their lives, sharing meals and celebrations, recount-
ing political events and reflecting on their significance, teaching us to
speak Zapotec, and asking after our own families and past experiences.
It
was these conversations, in their straightforwardness and their complex-
ity, that brought us friendship and pleasure and enabled us to learn about
Juchitan.
Several foundations and research institutions contributed to making
my research possible. The TInker Foundation, through a grant to the
Committee on Latin American and Iberian Studies at Harvard University,
funded an early summer of research in
1983,
including my first trip to
Juchitan. The twelve months I lived in Juchitan during
1985
and
1986,
as
well as three additional months in Oaxaca and Mexico City, were funded
by dissertation research grants from the Social Science Research Council,
the Doherty Foundation, and the Inter-American Foundation. The Cen-
ter for International Studies at
MIT,
where I was a Visiting Scholar during
1990-91,
offered a supportive setting for discussion and writing. The
Center for u.S.-Mexican Studies at the University of California, San
Diego, through a Doctoral Research Fellowship for the spring of
1987
and a Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship for
1993-94,
proVided a rich
environment for analysis of Mexico, social movements, and social theory.
I am particularly grateful to the Center's then-Director, Wayne Cor-
neliUS, for fostering such an exceptional research institution, and to the
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