Graduation Year

Spring 2014

Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis


Environmental Analysis

Reader 1

Brinda Sarathy

Reader 2

Jose Calderon

Rights Information

© 2014 Keiko A. Budech


Known for its fertile soil and ideal climate, California has been one of the most agriculturally productive areas in the world. Often left out of this picture are the farmworkers who make it possible. Within this farmworker community, females are a sub-class that has been even more marginalized. This thesis investigates the gendered aspects of fieldwork and exposes female leadership working towards changing these specific struggles, such as sexual harassment in the fields, domestic abuse, pesticide exposure, and the perpetuation of submissive gender roles in the household and workplace. An in-depth case study of Lideres Campesinas, a community- based grassroots organization, is highlighted in order to share members’ stories and explore how an organization run by women farmworkers addresses gendered issues in the fields. A discourse on these obstacles will begin specifically in the fields of Coachella Valley.