How did Eva Peron contribute to Juan Peron’s success in consolidating and retaining power during the Peronist Era 1943-1955?
Vol. 3, no. 1, pages 14-21
University College Utrecht
The emergence of a neglected working-class (the Descamisados) after the Great Depression became an optimal environment for Juan Peron’s rise to power, with Eva Peron by his side. Schools of thought rationalise that Eva’s tenacity, forcefulness, and use of acting skills were key in coercing masses of Descamisados to rally behind Peron. However, countering schools argue that Eva held little influence among unionists and the wider working-class, who already supported Peron following the effective reforms made during his terms as Labour Minister. Eva proved more influential as First Lady, effectively becoming a propagandist tool that sustained the Peronist movement. Her actions as First lady however, have provoked a second debate. Polarized opinions present two images of Eva: A loving wife who’s only motive was to help Argentina and serve her husband, versus a tactical woman who political ambitions and premeditated actions that gave her considerable social influence.