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Gender
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North America
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Farming, USA, Tennessee
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Hope Baird is a female farm hand in Cross Plains, Tennessee. Although she acts like one of the boys, she is treated like an outsider - a female. Hope works, drinks and cusses like the men, buy she is still thought of as an after-work sexual opportunity to the men.
Tamara Voninski

1991 — student winner

When I was in high school, I studied history in depth. There was a lack of information about women at any particular point in time. I was constantly asking my teachers, “What were the women doing?”

Since the equal rights movement, women’s roles have been constantly changing. There are more opportunities and career choices for females. I am presently working on a series of photo stories that depict women and current roles in society.

I have enclosed two of these stories in my portfolio. Hope Baird, a Cross Plains, Tennessee farmhand, just wants to be one of the boys. She works, drinks, and sweats, but the men still think of her as an after work sexual opportunity. Anita works long hours at a Bar-B-Q in Thompkinsville, Kentucky to support her children. Samantha wants to be just like her mother, but Anita wants her daughter to have more opportunities.

I want to make a strong social statement about women’s roles in current society. This is a project I will continue for the next several years and expand to various parts of the United States and elsewhere. Someday, I hope young history students won’t need to ask, “What were the women doing in the 1990’s?”

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Hope Baird is a female farm hand in Cross Plains, Tennessee. Although she acts like one of the boys, she is treated like an outsider - a female. Hope works, drinks and cusses like the men, buy she is still thought of as an after-work sexual opportunity to the men. Tamara Voninski/Alexia Foundation
Hope checks in with her boss, Randall Carr, after working on irrigation pipes all day. Tamara Voninski/Alexia Foundation
Hope's boss, Randall Carr, watches as she struggles with tying a horse trailer. Tamara Voninski/Alexia Foundation
The crew takes a break after working in the tobacco fields. Tamara Voninski/Alexia Foundation
The work is physically demanding. "I can't do everything the guys do," Hope said. Tamara Voninski/Alexia Foundation
Hope starts to drink as soon as she gets off work. She starts to drink at 5:01 PM while her boss and a neighbor's daughter watch. Tamara Voninski/Alexia Foundation
Hope realized both of the men drinking in her house wanted to sleep with her. "I sent the boy home (Dave, at left) and I took the man," she said. Tamara Voninski/Alexia Foundation