New Ad Campaigns Take Aim at Machismo in Latin America

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New ad campaigns sweeping across Latin America are taking on a centuries-old code of machismo propulgated by outdated ideas of male and female power dynamics.

First, Chile launched a campaign that declared, "Maricón, el que maltrata a una mujer." Watch the PSA below:

In Ecuador, they started a campaign that links machismo attitudes to violence against women, with the slogan "El machismo es violencia." Reacciona Ecuador created a series of PSA's aimed at alerting the population to the high rates of violence against women.

But Matthew Gutmann, an anthropology professor at Brown University in Provi­dence, R.I., and author of The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, told the Christian Science Monitor that he has noted signs of changing attitudes. Mexico has launched a new telenovela, El Sexo Debil, that features women who find macho men repulsive—Gutmann points to this and the campaigns in Ecuador and Chile as proof. "The ads, the TV shows," he says, "are a sign of ongoing ferment about what it means to be a man, what it means to be a woman, relations between men and women."

We can't argue with that logic; graduation rates for women in formerly male-dominated fields have sky rocketed across Latin America, and Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Costa Rica have all elected female leaders of state in the last five years. Meanwhile, the U.S. is still waiting for its first female president. .

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About this author

Mariela Rosario,

I'm a raging opinionista and I love to share my ramblings on everything from pop culture to food to stuff that makes me laugh & cry! I've worked in all types of media (TV, film, print) and was previously the online editor at Latina magazine before joining Mamás Latinas. On most nights you can find me working my way through my library of cookbooks or playing with my puppy Lola (my only child so far). I have a wonderful hubby who shares my passion for any and all kinds of travel. Together, we've formed a semi-professional wine drinking team.

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