Most people in the Caribbean are poor, and the economies of their countries, shaped by colonizing powers, remain highly dependent on international markets, Caribbean nations that have tried to follow a more autonomous course have found themselves at odds with the United States, which sees the region as part of its own sphere of influence. Washington has tried to bind the region more closely to the U.S. economy as a source of cheap labor and as a market for U.S. goods, while pushing Caribbean governments to repay onerous foreign debts at the expense of the living standards of their people. In the Shadows of the Sun examines the region's disastrous experience in the 1980s, when sharp economic declines resulted from the debt crisis and the poor performance of regional exports. It focuses on alternative development strategies that have emerged in recent years, based on the goals of meeting basic needs and ending poverty; of eliminating discrimination based on gender, race, and ethnicity; and of promoting democratic participation. Proposing a U.S. policy toward the region that might provide conditions more favorable to alternative development strategies and mutual cooperation, the authors place special emphasis on alleviating the burdens that the economic crisis places on women in their roles as both breadwinners and caregivers. The product of a collaborative research effort among Caribbean scholars and U.S. experts on the region, this book is the most recent in a distinguished series of books from Policy Alternatives for the Caribbean and Central America (PACCA).
The Setting -- The Economic Crisis -- Impact of the Crisis on Poor Women and Their Households -- Structural Adjustment and the Quest for Participation -- The Historical Legacy: U.S.-Caribbean Relations -- The Caribbean Basin Initiative -- Beyond Structural Adjustment: Alternative Development Strategies -- Out of the Shadow: Alternative U.S. Policies Toward the Caribbean