Easy Money and Respectable Girls: Neoliberalism and Expectation in the US Virgin Islands

Tami Navarro
Sep 30, 2015 | 12:00pm
Lunchtime Lecture
Barnard Center for Research on Women, 101 Barnard Hall
3009 Broadway, New York, NY 10027

Tami Navarro lecture image


In St. Croix, a disproportionate number of young women from middle and upper-middle class backgrounds are hired to work within the Economic Development Commission (EDC), an initiative that grants tax incentives to businesses based in the US Virgin Islands. In this lecture, BCRW Associate Director Tami Navarro examines questions of gender, racial inequality, and widening class divisions by looking at the competing expectations workers face from their employers and their local communities. Through the EDC program, neoliberal expectations of privatization (of property, of identity, of spending decisions) clash with community demands for solidarity and more equitable dispersal of EDC capital – widely understood as circulating through exclusionary networks of wealth.


Tami Navarro is the Associate Director of BCRW and Managing Editor of the Center’s online journal, Scholar and Feminist Online. She holds a Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology from Duke University. Her research interests include Neoliberalism, Capital, Gender and Labor, Development, Identity Formation, Globalization/Transnationalism, Race/Racialization and Ethnicity, and Caribbean Studies. Her research has been supported by the Mellon Foundation, the Wenner-Gren Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, the American Anthropological Association, and the Ford Foundation.

Before coming to Barnard, she was a Visiting Scholar at the Institute for Research on Women, Gender, and Sexuality at Columbia University. She is currently at work on a manuscript entitled Virgin Capital: Financial Services as Development in the US Virgin Island.

Photo used by permission of the Reanimation Library.

This event is free and open to the public. Preregistration is preferred but not required.

This event is accessible to people with mobility disabilities.

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