From the kitchen and the field: Gender and maize diversity in the Bajío region of Mexico
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Research on women and biodiversity has highlighted the importance of women's knowledge in plant domestication and biodiversity conservation. The data here presented is the result of a gendered knowledge case study in four villages the Bajio region of Mexico. The paper argues the need to include both men's and women's knowledge in research and denounces the lack of gender focus on previous research. Differences of knowledge come from the gender division of labour both at home and in the different farming plots. For this reason it is equally important to include both in research. Case studies on Mali, Swaziland and Venezuela see the shift from food crops (crop diversity) to cash crop production (fewer crops) as the reason that agriculture became male-dominated. Most recently, economic pressures drive men away from their plots increasing the workload of the elderly, children, and women. Due to men's absence, women have to assume responsibility for most agricultural activities, and this is creating a shift in gender roles.