Mourning María Pantalones: Military Rule and the Politics of Race, Citizenship, and Nostalgia in Panama

  • Aims McGuinnessEmail author
Part of the New Caribbean Studies book series (NCARS)


This essay examines public reactions to the 2013 death of Maud Catherine Carter, or “María Pantalones.” Carter became a public figure during the military government (1968–1989) as a popular leader in Panama City. Carter notoriously attired herself in pants or shorts and combined charity work for poor children with organizing for the Revolutionary Democratic Party (PRD), the party of Panama’s military government. After the U.S. invasion of 1989, Carter’s political fortunes waned. The essay discusses how her death provided a brief reprieve from the public amnesia that shrouds the military era, allowing for expressions of nostalgia for the gains made by some working-class people in the military years as well as ambivalence about the current era of neoliberalism.


Political Party Military Officer Panama Canal Military Government Military Rule 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of HistoryUniversity of Wisconsin–MilwaukeeMilwaukeeUSA

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