TONGOLELE on Wed, 27 Mar 2002 11:30:14 +0100 (CET)

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Re: <nettime> biology and technology

Sadie Plant's technoeuphoric views on how digitial technologies "transform" 
the body are insidiously pro-globalization and ethically irresponsible. The 
last post failed to mention that her "study" on the impact of cell phones was 
financed by Motorola - and it appears to be quite a puff piece that serves 
the interests of her employers. 

Below is an excerpt from a recent report by Casa de la Mujer-Grupo Factor X 
in Tijuana, Mexico on the long term effects of working in electronics 
assembly plants on maquiladora workers' bodies. 

coco fusco

"In terms of academic research in Mexico, little attention has been directed 
to the long-term impact on labor conditions and the health of the workers. In 
spite of this, it has been possible to ascertain the following: work related 
injuries are directly related to the kind of work that is realized. For 
example, in the electronics industry there are a number of illnesses and 
conditions that are directly related to working with toxic substances. 
Symptoms range from headaches (from inhalation of solvents), skin and eye 
irritations, gastrointestinal illnesses, to repercussions in reproductive 
health, such as spontaneous abortions, temporary sterility and anecephalia 
(babies born without or with partial brains). In additions, there have been 
grave cases of massive intoxication from severe overexposure to toxic 

One of the frequent conditions from which maquiladora workers suffer, 
regardless of where they work is stress generated by the rising rate of the 
rhythm of production. Little has been analyzed and much less legislated in 
relation to this; on the contrary, there exists a tendency to diminish the 
hours of work due to extra increments in the standards of production. Little 
has been analyzed or legislated regarding this issue. On the contrary, there 
exists a tendency to diminish the relevance of the extra hours due to the 
increments in the standards of production, which directly impacts upon the 
mental health of workers."

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