Baylor Professor to Speak About Child Labor in Guatemala on Oct. 25

Oct. 24, 2007

by Devany Severin, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805

Dr. Thomas Offit, assistant professor of anthropology at Baylor, will discuss his research findings on child labor in Guatemala in a lecture on "Child Labor in Global Perspective: A View from the Streets of Guatemala," as a part of the Global Issues Lecture Series from 4-5 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 25, in room 116 of the Draper Academic Building on Baylor campus.

In his lecture, Offit will look at the traditional academic and popular conceptions of child labor and will critique traditional conceptions using his own ethnographic research conducted in Guatemala City. He will illustrate the national and global structural causes for child labor, the reasons why poor children and their families choose to labor and participate in child labor and the local and global consequences of their decisions.

Offit encourages students to attend to gain an appreciation for the relationships between child labor in the developing world and their own lives in the United States, he said.

The lecture will also show students the situation of many children around the world. "It will give students a greater understanding of the lives of child laborers and urban poor children throughout the developing world."

Offit is a socio-cultural anthropologist who works in Guatemala and the United States. His primary research interests involve youth and social reproduction, and he focuses on the ways that children and young adults seek to maintain and reproduce their cultural beliefs while adapting to new social, economic and political formations.

The lecture is free and open to the public. There will be a Q&A session at the conclusion of Offit's presentation. The Center for International Education sponsors the lecture series.

For more information contact Dr. Lizbeth Souza-Fuertes, director of Latin American Studies at Baylor, at (254) 710-4531 or

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