ResearchPaperFinal - Andrada 1 Kristen Andrada Professor...

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Andrada 1 Kristen Andrada Professor Van Aulen CRWT I 16 December 2011 Research Paper What does it mean to exploit someone? To take advantage of someone for someone else’s benefit? Sweatshops are what come to mind when the word “exploitation” comes up. In a situation where a business man who owns a factory and employs people for cheap labor often is associated with the word “exploitation,” especially foreign-owned businesses in Third World countries. But do foreign-owned businesses like US multi-national companies in developing countries like Vietnam exploit the Vietnamese workers in those factories? Although American businesses profit for Vietnamese cheap labor, the Vietnamese also benefit from working in the American factories as well. Many factory workers are women; unlike America who has constituted gender rights, developing countries have not gone past the notion of gender equality. Thus that gender inequality defines a woman’s job as “assembly-line work” in multinational companies in the Third World (Ehrenreich and Fuentes 117). Even though these jobs illustrate gender stereotypes, they actually benefit the Vietnamese women in these factories in that the conditions are preferable to their previous opportunities the fact that money helps these women as well as meeting essential needs. Moreover, despite US concerns about exploitation in Vietnam, factory workers make more than other jobs and in regardless, the Vietnamese and the US economy cannot be compared. Working in the factory is considered “women’s” work; the average factory worker is “the world’s new industrial proletariat [is] young, female, Third world” (Ehrenreich and Fuentes 176-
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Andrada 2 7). Unfortunately, these facts are true, “the modal employee at Changshin is a young, rural woman” (Ehrenreich and Fuentes 176). In the Vietnamese culture, “sewing is viewed as “woman’s work,” as it is in much of the rest of the world, which explains why 85% of the workers are women” (Kahel, Boush, and Phelps 45). However, this gender inequality should not
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ResearchPaperFinal - Andrada 1 Kristen Andrada Professor...

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