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More so, there were virtually no female heads of state in Latin America as late as the 1980s. Nevertheless, beginning the 1990s to present, the number of women in executive positions and especially as presidents in Latin America has increased drastically. In this essay we look at two women who have made political impact in Latin America, both in the 20th and 21st centuries. We briefly look at Evita Peron, a 20th century woman and the role she played in shaping the future for Latin American women of the 21st century. Secondly, we look more extensively at Michelle Bachelet, her presidency in Chile and how she has continually championed for women rights. Evita Peron was the most influential woman in Latin American history until the late 20th century. Although Evita never officially held a post in the executive, she was a powerful advocate of women rights in the political arena. Until her death in 1952, Evita was actively engaged in designing policies intended to benefit women in Argentina. In association with other feminists, Evita formed the “Peronist Feminist Party” that was designed to help women ascend the political ladder and occupy important political posts (Keen & Haynes, pp. 383). In the social sector, Evita founded a charitable organization that gave financial and legal aid to disadvantaged women in Argentina.
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