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Women’s History and Movements in 20th-Century Brazilfree

Women’s History and Movements in 20th-Century Brazilfree

  • Maria Lygia Quartim de MoraesMaria Lygia Quartim de MoraesUniversity of Campinas Department of Sociology


In the early twentieth century, Brazil depended on coffee exports, its slave regime had just been abolished, and most of its inhabitants lived in the countryside. The Catholic Church exercised the moral direction of society, and White landowners virtually established the rules of sociability and controlled economic and political life. A woman’s social position was fundamentally determined according to their social class. Wealthy and White middle-class women had access to some form of education, and when they left the family home, it was to marry and raise a family, being completely dependent on their husbands, with no political rights, and only allowed to work upon marital authorization.

With rapid urbanization, wretched working conditions, as either a domestic servant or a textile worker (the two female labor niches), worsened the lives of poor women in the city. Access to education, the struggle for labor rights, and the right to vote were the pillars of the long women’s emancipation process that was in progress.

In 1964 a military coup plunged Brazil into a long dictatorship that only ended in 1985 with the return of democratic institutions and the election of a civil president. The conquest of democracy was made with the broad participation of the various women’s groups and movements, especially the feminist movements.


  • History of Brazil
  • Family and Children
  • Gender and Sexuality

The 1917 Strike

In June 1917, women workers at the Crespi Cotton Mill located in São Paulo City went on strike against poor working conditions. Women and children comprised almost the entire textile industry labor force at that time. Like other female workers around the world, female weavers earned lower wages and had no legal protection, being frequently subjected to sexual harassment, while the so-called labor inspectors physically punished children. The law would at most grant them with the constitution of mutual aid societies.

World War I adversely affected equipment imports while the demand for textiles increased, and mill owners extended daily working hours to sixteen, often going into the night. Fueled by the workers’ exhaustion, accidents on weaving machines increased. Famine and starvation as well as inflation added to a life with no improvement prospects. When the strike began in an organized manner with two female workers reporting their demands to the press, the general mood of discontent spread to other factories, leading to confrontation between strikers and police officers.1 The death of a Spanish-origin striker was the last straw to radicalization.2 The strike took over the city and quickly spread throughout the country—Brazil was experiencing its first general workers strike.

Other workers’ strikes had already taken place from the beginning of the century, and every single one was harshly suppressed.

It is worthwhile remembering that in the early decades of the 1900s, the working class was composed of large numbers of Italians and Spaniards, who both had an anarchist or socialist background. In addition, the incipient forms of class organization reproduced the same gender bias by insisting upon the unity of all against the employer, overlooking the specificity of women’s situations.

The women workers’ activism in the 1917 general strike can be seen in the photographs and newspapers of that time. A historical photo of the strikers on the eve of the strike shows a crowd basically made up of women and children.3

The labor situation in Brazil reflected every distortion of a country whose political history is sui generis when compared to those of other South American countries. Settled by the Portuguese Crown, Brazil was the seat of government when Napoleon invaded Portugal, and its Prince Regent declared the country’s independence, becoming its first emperor. Its social structure reflected the inequalities arising from three centuries of slavery and the power of landownership. The umbilical relationship between the slave economy and monarchy led to the foreseeable outcome after the end of slave traffic, and eventually of slavery itself in 1888—the declaration of the republic, which took place peacefully eleven years later. Despite the strong presence of the army officers, who were republicans and defenders of a secular state, the political power remained in the hands of the exporting rural aristocracy.

In turn, the end of trafficking and the abolition of slavery raised the problem of labor shortage. An immigration policy was carried out to fill the need for labor for farming and was influenced by the population whitening simultaneously with eugenics, which was a mainstreaming ideology at that time. The Italians, Spaniards, and Portuguese were the natural preference due to linguistic proximity and for their being European. The Italians constituted the largest contingent of immigrants—about 1.5 million—concentrated mainly in São Paulo. They brought to Brazil the anarchist doctrines, which advocated the end of the state, equality between men and women, and relevant educational reforms.

Women Pioneers

Maria Lacerda de Moura (1887–1945), full of courage, sympathy, and idealism, was a staunch defender of women’s rights and critical of the state and its ideological apparatus, mainly the Church. Writer, teacher, anarchist, and feminist, de Moura was born in a countryside town of Minas Gerais State, with a freethinking father who intellectually encouraged her and introduced her to the liberating ideas of Maurice La Chartre. Graduating as a teacher at the age of 16, she was completely committed to education system reforms, but her activities went beyond school when she also drove a movement in support of disadvantaged elders so they could receive help and assistance. She became well known and admired, and her first book in 1918, On Education, was very well received. She moved to São Paulo City in 1921 and promptly made contact with anarchist workers from the Moema industrial district, where the Crespi factory was located. In the following year, she published her fifth book, The Fraternity at School.

Being feminist, she fought against prejudices related to women’s sexuality, struggled for women’s right to vote, and founded—along with Bertha Lutz—the Brazilian Federation for the Progress of Women (FBPM). Throughout her life, de Moura gave lectures and contacted pacifist groups around the world without ever receiving Lutz’s international recognition.4

Bertha Maria Júlia Lutz (1894–1976) was born to an upper-class family dedicated to medicine. Her father was a well-known pioneer of tropical medicine, and her mother was a British nurse. She studied Natural Sciences at the University of Sorbonne, France. In 1919, Lutz and de Moura established with four other women the League for the Intellectual Emancipation of Women, whose objective was to demand women’s rights, especially the right to vote.

A notable point about de Moura and Lutz’s connection is that both had been completely committed to the defense of women’s rights, but from very different assumptions and strategies. It can be said, roughly speaking, that de Moura denied conciliation policies; she always saw the state as a synthesis of oppression and was suspicious of political parties. The fight de Moura proposed was, therefore, one of confrontation with the established order. Lutz, in turn, was an ingenious negotiator who played according to the range of possibilities, and this projected her onto the political scene, leading to some important victories related to women’s rights, such as the female vote in the 1934 Constitutional Assembly, and some years later, the creation of the Committee on the Status of Women in the newly founded United Nations (UN), which remains today an important annual global gathering for governments and civil society.

Unlike de Moura, who lived in the countryside of Minas Gerais State, the other women who formed the League were from the ruling classes and moved around the power arena, directly involved with influential politicians in Rio de Janeiro City, capital of the country and center of political power, where the League was located. Lutz was an intellectual and activist with international contacts and a leading figure in the League. In 1922 she participated in the First Pan American Women’s Conference, promoted by one of the National Women Suffrage Association branches, an event that marked a turning point in her suffrage battle. If the women’s vote movement in England adopted dramatic methods of struggle, leading to the arrest of its participants, the groups assembled in the United States acted more to pressure public opinion and politicians. Lutz concluded that the latter model fitted Brazil better, and Brazil became part of the international group under the leadership of the North American, Carrie Chapman Catt. The Brazilian press hailed Lutz as the most important female leader, and the former League eventually joined the newly created League of Leagues, which flourished throughout the country. The struggle for women’s political rights joined with other movements also geared toward improving the living and working conditions of the population.

The workers’ demonstrations and the demands for the female vote, as well as the unrest that preceded the 1922 presidential elections, were thereby already indicating the mounting political and social tensions. Both rapid industrial and urban population growth stimulated the modernization and improving of the living conditions of the city, which later became the cradle of one of the most important Brazilian artistic movements known as the 1922 Modern Art Week. This was, therefore, a year full of remarkable events: the presence of women in public arenas and the different ways of pressure they organized for their rights; the founding of the Brazilian Communist Party (PCB); the celebration of the centenary of the independence; and the Copacabana Fort revolt, in which young military men faced death in defense of democratic ideas—all of them expressing the clear symptoms that the political pact of the ruling classes was falling apart. However, it took the 1929 economic crisis and the collapse of the coffee economy to make the project of a new country feasible.

The 1930 Revolution and the Right to Vote

The division of the ruling elites was consolidated by the aftermath of the 1929 crisis, which severely hit São Paulo’s export economy. The country’s heavy dependence on foreign trade and the degree of foreign indebtedness reinforced the recessive effects of the economic crisis, becoming the trigger for dissatisfaction and contradiction with the agrarian-export bourgeois elite for the interests of the industrial bourgeoisie, and for regional rivalries given the hegemonic federalism of São Paulo.

The 1930 revolution marked the end of a cycle in the Brazilian economy, that is, the end of agrarian-export hegemony and the beginning of the predominance of productive activities based on urban-industrial sectors.5

The coup d’état of 1930, with strong military support, placed Getúlio Vargas in the President’s Office as a provisional head of state. The revolution had liberal ideas, and by instituting the Electoral Code on February 24, 1932, the president guaranteed women’s right to vote. Bertha Lutz’s moderate but persistent action led to other achievements related to women’s education and professional career access, in addition to the right to vote. She was by then already an internationally well-known feminist leader, and due to her influence, women’s labor rights were guaranteed exactly as advocated by the International Labor Organization (ILO) with the principle of equal pay for equal work. Intended to protect the women workers, the law, however, had little practical effect and was easily circumvented by little maneuvers such as hiring them for positions, which were nominally different from those of men.

In the first legislative elections of 1933, which should establish the new constitution, women were able to vote and be elected. Only one woman was elected Federal Representative—Dr. Carlota de Queirós, from São Paulo State. The female vote was restricted because the Brazilian patriarchies subjected a married woman to her husband, and her voting depended on his authorization. The 1934 Constitution guaranteed the vote to working single women and widows. Even with all these restrictions, however, securing women’s votes was an important achievement.

Those were also the years when Italian Fascism and German Nazism gained power with the nationalist and antisocialist rhetoric. Maria Lacerda de Moura, who used to correspond with the Italian anarchists, attributed the fascist victory in Italy to Italians’ low level of consciousness because of their being subjugated by the Church and the Capital. In her words: “The Vatican, Monarchy, and Fascism get along admirably well, and there they go hand in hand to defend mutually and simultaneously one another, at the appropriate time, against any libertarian demand.”6

And here lies the greatest difference between de Moura and Lutz: de Moura’s anarchist convictions were reinforced by the masses’ adherence to fascism, proving that the absence of political culture led to the adherence of the exploited to their exploiters. The text, Facism: Beloved Son of the Church and the Capital, published a year after women got their right to vote, began by referring to the Machiavellianism of the clerical civilization that entices women to the conservative vote, and to put their oppression down in history: “And women do not realize the trap and enlist in the row of reactionaries of all centuries. And she will vote when parliamentary representation is a merry-go-round, and universal suffrage a lie.”7

Audre Lorde (1934–1992), a scholar of Black feminism, also writes about the need to eradicate the deep misogynist ingrained in the oppressor’s odes of thought, which the oppressed end up adopting.

Lutz assumed a legislative seat in June 1936 upon the death of the incumbent deputy. In the following year, and under the false pretense of a communist plan to seize power, Getúlio Vargas staged a coup d’état, establishing the so-called New State. The 1938 elections thus ended up by not being held, and we do not know whether women would have voted for the Catholic reactionary.

The First Woman Political Prisoner

The history of the Brazilian Communist Party, founded in 1922, and which brought together young military, intellectuals, and workers’ leaders, was marked by political persecution, which forced it to go underground. Dissatisfied with the direction taken by the Vargas interim government, the party participated with other opposing forces in the National Liberating Alliance—an anti-fascist front that attracted thousands of supporters. In 1935, however, Vargas put the Alliance underground and the Communist Party decided to resort to confrontation with uprisings in many cities. The movement was repressed and used as a justification for a violent hunt for communists, with the arrest and torture of numerous members.

The “red scare” also justified the arrest of Patrícia Galvão (1910–1962), making her the first woman to become a political prisoner in Brazil. Patricia Galvão, better known as Pagu, was a young libertarian and avant-la-lettre feminist who for many years anticipated the themes, issues, and dilemmas that emerged with the 1970s feminism.

One must remember that in the Art Week of 1922, Pagu was only twelve years old and lived in a mid-sized town dominated, like the rest of the country, by the coronelismo (governance according to direct coronels’ rules) of the First Republic. At the age of eighteen, she was introduced to the couple, Tarsila do Amaral and Oswald de Andrade, and started to circulate in São Paulo’s intellectual elite, especially around the modernist movement. The romantic relationship between Pagu and Oswald must have begun at a date close to their diary—Romances—in May 1929. During this period, she collaborated in the Journal of Anthropology with a drawing. The following year, carrying Oswald’s child, she married the painter Waldemar Belisario to keep up appearances. The marriage was annulled a year later, and Pagu and Oswald enter into a verbal marriage commitment.

Consistent with her proletarian female heroes, Pagu joined the Brazilian Communist Party, acted in the communist press, and lived in a working-class village. The party leadership submitted her to “proletarianismization,” and her description of it is a testimony of their rigidity and sectarianism. Even so, years later, she emotionally recalls the dedication of party members clandestinely convened at a party meeting: “the Brazilian proletariat guided by a vanguard of that moral rectitude would break free, be victorious, in a short time.”8

In 1933, Pagu published the novel Industrial Park, under the pseudonym Mara Lobo, inaugurating a militant political literature whose value has been emphasized by the recent press but which was widely criticized at the time as that of pamphleteering. In addition to the cinematic pace, it exposed the double sexual morality and the use that daddy’s boys made of poor women workers. Pagu described in a few lines the logic foray of the wealthy young men into the working-class district of Brás, enjoying the carnival celebrations: “Every pretty girl is being bowled over. (...) Carnival continues, stifles, and deceives the outrage of the exploited. Of the poor.”9

Carnival is the opium of the people, and the bourgeoisie, not content with just exploiting the industrial labor force, corrupted and prostituted the daughters of the poor. Many of these “adventures,” which were part of the sexual learning of middle- and upper-class young men, ended in pregnancy and unwanted births. After seducing and deceiving the girl, the bourgeois biological father denied paternity because, as Pagu describes, “ he will never have the courage to look for a wife outside his class.” —combining gender and class oppression into one category.10

In 1935, Pagu was sentenced to two years in prison for being a communist and for her alleged participation in the communist uprising. In 1937, before serving her sentence, Pagu escaped from Santa Cruz Hospital, where she had been admitted for health problems, being arrested again in 1938 and sentenced to two more years in prison by Vargas’s New State National Security Court. The bourgeoisie would tolerate literary modernisms and sexual freedom, but never the option for communism—a particularly brave option for which Pagu paid the terrible price of torture and almost five years of confinement.

From the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to the 1964 Military Coup

The 1950s were a landmark of the profound transformations that would affect the country in the second half of the 20th century. The growing urbanization and the changes in the Brazilian economy with the development of industrial parks and the consolidation of heavy industries have repercussions on uses and customs, on family relations, and on union and political participation.

In 1948, Brazil was one of the signatories of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and Bertha Lutz then played a decisive role. She was credited with the inclusion in the Declaration of a specific item in Article 2 affirming equality between the two sexes: “Everyone is entitled to all the rights set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, color, sex, language, political, or other opinion, national or social origin, birth, or other status.” Such decisive participation consolidated her prestige as one of most important leaders in the struggle for women’s emancipation.

Maria Lacerda de Moura died in the same year at the age of 58. And with her went a whole generation of anarchists who struggled to introduce changes in education in order to democratize it, who experienced new community forms of life, and who rejected those they considered exploiters of the people—especially the Capitalism and the Church.

From 1954, when Vargas won a second term in office, the opposing right wing began to press and a wave of protests paralyzed the country. Vargas chose to commit suicide rather than resign, and his death undermined his enemies. From then on, political turmoil followed uninterruptedly, with coup attempts and increasing social contradictions such as the exploitation of rural labor, the struggle for land, and the dissatisfaction of workers who were not protected by labor legislation. In the 1960s, Brazil was a young country, and the challenge came from younger leaders, many of them socialist or communist and willing to change the world.

The 1960 elections, which were supposed to guarantee democratic stability, led to a sequence of political crises. The elected candidate, Janio Quadros—a charismatic and populist leader—decided to blackmail Congress, threatening it with resignation, which contrary to his expectations, was accepted. Vice President João Goulart was then on an official trip to China. Given American McCarthyism and its influence in Brazil, this fact was damning in itself.

Conservative classes panicked because Goulart would most likely be re-elected in the next elections. The 1964 coup was articulated between the industrial and agrarian federations, as well as with army strategists allied against the risks of communism. The United States was worried about Goulart’s refusal to vote for sanctions on Cuba, and actively participated in the articulations that eventually led to the military coup. The Catholic Church, whose influence was enormous, played an important role in heightening the coup atmosphere.

Meanwhile, women took to the streets to defend the family, property, and God, as de Moura had predicted. In Catholic schools, nuns and priests indoctrinated their students, and the Women’s Regiment Movement (MAF) demonstrations of “ladies of our best society” were headed by priests and nuns or by sacred symbols. All of this gradually created an atmosphere of discrediting and demonization around the Goulart government.

The military coup was over on April 1, 1964, and the persecution of those considered subversive began, class associations were banned, and political activities suspended. Under the command of Minister Delfim Netto the country’s economy was modernized according to the tripod government investments/private capital/foreign capital model, and with a “wage cutback” policy.11 The economic development of the 1970s and the victory in the FIFA World Cup gave rise to a philistine nationalism with the slogan “love it or leave it.”

From Guerrilla to Feminism

The 1960s Brazilian generation had experienced one of the longest periods of democratic government. The so-called modernization in the form of industrialization and urbanization meant the supremacy of industrial capital and cities over agrarian capital and old rural elites. The middle class expanded, and values of the traditional Catholic family were being questioned.

This generation’s youth took part in a movement known as the New Left, which disapproved the lack of freedom in socialist countries and the bureaucratization, as well as the Brazilian communist parties’ lack of revolutionary perspective. The towering prestige of the Cuban revolution led to the development of an international revolutionary front at the Congress of the Latin American Solidarity Organization (OLAS) in 1966. The Brazilian Communist leader, Carlos Marighella, present at the meeting, returned to Brazil willing to start the armed resistance. As such, from within the traditional communist parties and with the adhesion of many students that had been radicalized over the years, the National Liberating Action was formed—one of the most active and long-lived Guevarist-inspired organizations.

The historical dimension of young people and women’s presence in the resistance to dictatorship can only be understood in view of the set of social and political changes taking place. Access to higher education was one of the primary roads for the emergence of political activism among middle-class young women. Women’s political activism entailed an inevitable disruption of the well-behaved, virgin, family mother-to-be standard.

Universities and student politics were, therefore, fundamental in shaping the 1970s feminists. Many of them participated in the armed resistance, many died in torture, and those who survived spent years in dictatorship prisons, and of those who left Brazil many became feminists when in contact with the European experience, especially in France. The road to exile included mainly Cuba, Chile, and France.12

However, the 1960s cannot be limited to student movements and libertarian flags, leaving aside the artistic experiments, the rock ‘n’ roll revolution, music festivals, and the theater groups, Arena and Oficina, in São Paulo. Nor events such as the Woodstock Music Festival, the new French novel, the Cinema Novo, or the rise of a group of women artists who focused on gender issues, especially the use of the female body and domestic slavery.

Not every women’s activism during the dictatorship was feminist; from 1975 to 1982, the expression “women’s movement” was more appropriate to the disrupting struggles for democracy, for amnesty, against poverty, for day-care centers, and the end of violence against women. The long process of re-democratization strengthened social and political rights activist groups and promoted some sizable victories regarding women’s rights. Domestic campaigns reporting the death of women for “honor” crimes (today included within femicides), the report of sexism in textbooks, and campaigns against sexual harassment are some of the achievements that defined the end of the Decade of Women—an extension of the International Year of Women decreed by the UN in 1975. Changes in political context resulting from these new activisms—in which feminism was present—widened the scenario of political clashes and the relationship of social movements with the state.

Alternative spaces of militancy and partisan reorganization emerged in view of the defeat of the armed resistance, with the arrest, death, or banishment of political opponents, in addition to censorship in newspapers. In a time before the internet, the alternative press was the channel used for establishing political collectives. This is true for both the Communist Party of Brazil-linked Movimento (Movement) newspaper and the catholic Marxists of the Brazil Urgente as well as for Em Tempo (In Time)—one of the pillars of the Workers’ Party (PT). All fell into the category of organic newspapers in the Gramsci sense of being at the service of a cause.

The Catholic Church, a powerful and organized ideological institution ubiquitous in Brazilian society, also had its rebels, priests, and laymen whose common purpose was a social action—a church geared to underprivileged people. Liberation Theology spread throughout South America and was especially active during the dictatorship. It was this Church leftist branch that gave rise to clandestine political groups that would act in raising awareness. In the mid-1970s, feminists distributed their newspapers and had discussions in Church-organized mother clubs, and related themselves to already structured movements such as the anti-hunger movement, homemakers’ associations, housekeepers’ associations, and clusters of women’s departments inside the unions.

These movements, like the vast majority of social movements of the early 1970s, were composed mainly of women who, in 1978, organized a demonstration on the steps of the Metropolitan Sé Cathedral and paraded through the streets despite police barriers. They had gotten 1.3 million signatures for a petition suggesting urgent measures given the inflation that reduced purchasing power.

Another movement that united every women’s group and association was the Day-Care Movement, which began in 1970 and has been active ever since then. Last but not least, it is important to mention the majority participation of women, through their own history and experience with the repression of dictatorship, in the organization and leadership of the Amnesty Women’s Movement as of 1975, and of support groups for political prisoners, with the Group of Relatives of the Dead and Political Prisoners.

Who Were the Feminists in the 1970s and 1980s?

The 1970s marked profound changes in the country, its population, and the situation of women. In terms of the overall population of Brazil, after the 1970s, the population surpassed one hundred million people (figure 1).

Figure 1. Evolution of Brazilian population (millions of inhabitants).

(Data from IBGE Estatísticas do Século XX (Rio de Janeiro) 2006).

The economic model imposed by the dictatorship was based on a balance among the state sector, the national private sector, and the foreign investment sector, and its main objective was to transform the country into a major power. At the same time, the rights of assembly, of freedom of expression, among other essential rights of democracy, were denied to most of the population. But starting in the 1980s, the economic model became no longer sustainable; the country experienced periods of increasing inflation and popular discontent.

Important changes were also creating conditions for women’s greater autonomy. From 1970 onward the rate of female fertility decreased, going from an average of 4.35 children in 1980 to 2.89 children in 1991 (figure 2).

Figure 2. Evolution of fecundity rates, Brazil 1949–2010.

(Data from IBGE Estatísticas do Século XX (Rio de Janeiro) 2006.)

This decrease results from the combined effects of women’s entry into the labor market (figure 3), greater political participation (figure 4), increased schooling (figure 5), and last but not least, the modernization of customs disseminated by Brazilian soap operas, which had a wide reach across social classes in all regions of the country.13

Figure 3. Evolution of the Economic Participating rates by Sex, Brazil 1950–2010.

(Data from IBGE Estatísticas do Século XX (Rio de Janeiro) 2006.)

Figure 4. Evolution of Brazilian Electorate, 1974–2008.

(Data from IBGE Estatísticas do Século XX (Rio de Janeiro) 2006.)

Figure 5. Average number of years’ study of the population over five by gender in selected population censuses, Brazil 1960/1970/1980/1991/2000.

(Graphic by author. Data from K. I. Beltrão, and J. E. D. Alves, “Reversal of the gender gap in Brazilian education in the 20th century,” Cadernos de Pesquisa 39 (136), (2009): 125–156.)

In the 1980s, women had reached better education levels and increasing participation in the labor market. As a result, many achieved economic autonomy, a sine qua non condition of their emancipation. The spread of contraceptives made it possible to reduce fertility rates and increase sexual freedom.

The unquestionable evidence of the feminist ideas’ emergence lies in the semantic change of the word. Currently, numerous studies define women or acts related to women’s rights as “feminist,” but for many years prior, feminism was slandered as a movement of unloved women. In this sense, declaring oneself feminist implied an act of political courage for a long time. After the first editorial of the periodical Nós Mulheres (We Women) defined what being a feminist meant, only the Lesbian Feminist Group, and in 1980, the National Front of Feminists took on the designation, while the other groups used the euphemism of “feminine.”

After the military dictatorship years, the 1980s were the light at the end of the tunnel. The alternative press diversified, and the 1979 amnesty allowed hundreds of exiles—people with their political rights lifted and those who lost their citizenship—to return. Also, many convicted of political crimes were released. The growth of grass-roots movements (especially those coordinated by women, such as the mother’s clubs, the movement against the cost of living, and the struggle for day-care centers), the activism of the metalworkers, as well as the party system reorganization, with the foundation of the Workers Party (PT), are some indicators of profound changes in the country’s political landscape.

The very political potential of the women’s movements in São Paulo sparked a new political dispute between different leftist currents as opposed to independent feminists. Simultaneously, groups and women who called themselves feminists became a new force within social movements. The political feminism of the 1970s, focused more on class struggles, was gradually replaced by a new generation of feminists who favored the topic of violence against women, giving rise to SOS-Mulher (SOS-Women)—a group that supported women victims of violence.

When, in the 1980s, opposition forces to the military dictatorship deepened their disagreements, feminist groups also suffered divisions. The feminists separated from their parties—the PT or the Brazilian Democratic Movement Party (PMDB)—and maintained a policy of joint action on some fronts.

There were clear differences in priorities also among those who declared themselves feminists, as noted at the Feminist Meeting of Valinhos in 1980. The relationship with men then became a sort of watershed among lesbian militants—who refused any alliance with men—and the “hetero.”

Over the years, feminism became increasingly plural, and new approaches and goals took shape. Interestingly, the attempt of alliance around gay rights did not thrive because lesbians felt discriminated against and antagonized by gay men. Existing feminist groups did not give enough attention to their issues, which was why many of them preferred to organize their own groups. There was a whole discussion at the time of the resolutions of that meeting in 1980, and finally the program focused on a topic that they all agreed on: violence against women, with the highly appropriate formula “who loves does not kill.”

Building the Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transgeneric Movement

The history of the movement includes moments of convergence and of conflicts. In Brazil, the first homosexual newspaper called Somos (We Are) was created in 1978 in São Paulo. Up to then, homosexual activism focused more on organizing groupie clubs of artists or on social spaces such as pubs and nightclubs. There was not exactly a prospect of political militancy.

Somos participants had a large proportion of gay men and defended the rights of women and ethnic minorities. The newspaper’s print runs were from ten to 15,000 copies with nationwide circulation. Soon, lesbians from Somos began to form sub-groups such as the Feminist Lesbian Group (LF), which was later called the Feminist Lesbian Action Group (GALF). Historian Marisa Fernandes describes the pluralism inside LF, with members’ professions varying from housekeepers to software developers, women who did not come from the Academy but from the “closet” and the “ghetto.” The common ground between them was lesbianism.14

The First Brazilian Meeting of Homosexuals (EBHO) was held in São Paulo in April 1980, with about 200 participants coming from different parts of the country, and with a predominance of gay men. The meeting was the stage for discussions about sexism against lesbians and feminism, denouncing an atmosphere of disrespect for them and the woman’s body. The discord generated in the event caused the lesbians to break with Somos and the name change from LF to Feminist Lesbian Action Group (GALF).

Having the military dictatorship and its defenders as a common enemy, solidarity reigned among mutually supporting feminists, anti-racists, and the Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transgeneric (LGBT) movement. Against a male police chief—famous for his arrogance and whose main target was prostitutes, homosexuals, and transvestites—a large demonstration and a public act were organized on June 13, 1980, in São Paulo. Lesbians carried one sign reading “For Lesbian Pleasure” and another reading “Against Police Violence.” For Marisa Fernandes this event was the very first LGBT march in the country and the date was incorporated into the LGBT movement as a milestone to be celebrated.15

In 1981 the pioneering lesbian newsletter, Chanacomchana, published by GALF militants, began to circulate. On July 23, 1983, lesbians were distributing the newspaper at Ferro’s Bar, in downtown São Paulo, when they were kicked out. To the surprise of the bar owner, on August 19 the place was overrun by hundreds of lesbians in a political action, getting extensive press coverage and the support of feminists, Black movement members, gay men and women, and human rights defenders. Lesbians continued to sell Chanacomchana at the bar and started celebrating the date as the Brazilian Stonewall.

Many years later, in August 1996, about a hundred lesbians gathered at the National Lesbian Seminar (SENALE) in Rio de Janeiro to create their own militancy space. At that same meeting they proclaimed August 23 as Brazil’s National Lesbian Visibility Day.

The Many Oppressions of Black Women

The Third Latin American and Caribbean Feminist Meeting of 1985 marked the transition to a diverse feminism, in which lesbian feminists organized a group, and Black feminists formed another group—the primacy of sexual orientation on one hand and the primacy of race/ethnicity on the other hand. In terms of public policy, the priorities of the first ones were to recognize same-sex unions, the right to adopt children, and the criminalization of homophobia. For the Black feminists, high on the agenda was reparation policies, and the demand for racial quotas at every level of public administration—universities and other public education institutions. According to the categories defined by Nancy Fraser, it can be said that lesbians sought recognition, as clearly indicated by the fact that they called their commemorative date the Day of Visibility, while Black feminists were more guided by social claims and the redistribution of goods, either material or symbolic.16

Statistics show that Black women occupied the lower rung of Brazilian society, whatever the criteria used—employment, income and education, political power, public office. They were the poorest strata of society, with the lowest qualifications, the lowest wages, and the greatest family burdens. The Black population was the most decimated by violent deaths, especially those caused by police actions, and Black women were also victims of gender violence.

This set of adversities also hampered the emergence of intellectuals among Black women and the organization of Black women around racism. The struggle against racism thus stemmed from Black women inside leftist parties and women’s social movements. In the specific case of feminism, some young female students joined existing groups, but like the lesbians, the Black participants did not identify themselves with White middle-class feminism.

As for Black women, there was also the fact that they were the largest contingent of domestic employment, while the bosses and employers were from White Brazilian middle-class families. This power relationship was worsened by the fact that most housekeepers lived in the bosses’ houses in a tiny “maid’s room.” The work done in White people’s homes, which were also the homes of the housekeepers, reproduced a situation of vulnerability and dependence and could hardly generate bonds of solidarity between women because they were employers and housekeepers—one ordering, the other obeying, the latter often abandoning their own children to care for the children of their employers.

Not surprisingly, it was the daughter of an indigenous housekeeper and a Black father who thought in an articulated way the dimensions of social class, race, and gender—Lélia de Almeida Gonzalez (1930–1994), one of the most prominent activists of Black feminism.17 A graduate of History and Philosophy at the University of Guanabara, and with a PhD in Political Anthropology, she taught philosophy in a public secondary school and was known for her positions of resistance to the military dictatorship and as an activist of the Black movement. As a feminist, she was part of the editorial board of the newspaper, Mulherio, published in São Paulo; as an anti-racist activist, she helped create the Unified Black Movement (MNU) of the Black Research Institute. The MNU, founded in 1978, was one of the first initiatives to congregate Black political groups from many parts of Brazil, and among its many achievements is the creation in 2001 of Black Awareness Day—today a holiday in a number of states.

The struggle tradition of African Americans and the theoretical production of authors such as Angela Davis since the 1960s and Bell Hooks, pseudonym of Gloria Jean Watkins (b. 1952) who published the 1981 book Aint I a Woman?, were references for Brazilian Black intellectuals. Thus, from the late 1980s Black feminists began to formulate deep analyses of the many dimensions of racism that structured social relations in Brazil.

Re-engendering Democracy

Brazilian feminism had learned from the French experience the importance of securing specific rights for women and of pressuring the political and legal apparatus of the country. Many feminists engaged in the campaigns for the 1982 elections, the first direct election since 1964, the year of the military coup. The election of André Franco Montoro as governor of the State of São Paulo was a major victory for the democratic forces and made room for unprecedented initiatives that had been proposed by the women’s movements, such as the councils of women’s rights—first at the state level followed by a federal one.

Elections for the Constituent Assembly, which defined a new legal order for the country, were scheduled for 1986 and embodied the new post-dictatorship democratic order. The federal-level National Council of Women’s Rights (CNDM) launched the Women and Constituent campaign and undertook a nationwide consultation process to draw up a platform of demands that were presented to constituent deputies in the form of a Women’s Charter.

The revival of democratic life was also reflected in the greater number of women elected candidates, including many feminist militants. An interesting phenomenon was that women organized themselves on a single political group regardless of the parties by which they were elected. Thus, a cross-party congressional caucus was formed in 1986 in the National Congress, which was labeled (revealing the prevailing sexism) The Lipstick Caucus.

It was the pressure from these representatives that made possible a series of fundamental achievements related to family law. Marriage was indissoluble in Brazil until 1977, given the opposition of the powerful Catholic Church. Even many middle- and upper-class women who depended economically on their husbands and feared a loss of social status opposed the legalization of divorce. It was necessary that in the middle of the military dictatorship, a Protestant dictator, General Geisel, pressured Congress to pass the divorce law, despite the opposition of Catholics and Conservatives. But the biggest changes in the patriarchal structure of marriage were the result of the efforts of Brazilian feminists and their participation in the drafting of the new Constitution.

In fact, in just nine sections, Article 226 of the Federal Constitution of 1988 (CF) dismantled the legal armor of an inequality system between men and women, enshrined in the secular prejudices of the 1916 Civil Code.

The family that appears in the CF is based on the principle of equality between men and women, being described as a “base of society,” to which the state guarantees protection. In this new family, both spouses exercise “the rights and duties related to the family entity,” prevailing the constitutional principle of legal equality between all children, whether born in or out of marriage, natural or adopted, and the reduction of terms and conditions requirements for divorce. Finally, the legal precept of family includes “the community formed by any parent and their descendants,” recognizing the existence of many possibilities for family arrangements.18

The Ambiguities of Institutionalization

The achievements of the 1980s provided a working space for feminist activism, and government positions helped to institutionalize part of the former autonomous militants. Dozens of academic units and research networks emerging from the middle of this decade consolidated the women’s studies and the feminist perspective in universities and research institutions. The expansion of feminist spaces led to a division of labor that relaxed the ties between female intellectuals and researchers who worked in universities with the activists who started to create or participate in non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

Feminists’ enthusiasm for the achievements during this period, when a series of services and secretariats came to focus on gender policies, hindered a better assessment of the deeper political consequences of such dramatic changes. Many entered universities as professors and researchers, and academic demands did not match militancy. Politically active feminists dispersed into parties with distinct political projects. Autonomous groups gradually shifted to the logic of NGOs, which depends on funding. Many are the causes that led to the gradual withdrawal of feminist militants from more direct contact with women from the popular movements, marking the end of an era.

The result was that NGOs have become advisory bodies detached from a political project of social change, more welfare-oriented in some cases or more technical in others. Time has shown that the introduction of a NGO’s culture has favored the anti-statist neoliberal ideology. Instead of the French model, where the guarantee of the republic was in universal education of good quality and equal for all, what was sought was the minimum state, with the reduction of public policies in parallel with the privatization of the state sector in the economy. However, some of the organizations that emerged at the end of the decade describe themselves as “civil society organizations,” evading the “third sector” stereotype and actually working for women’s rights. This is the case of Geledés, created in 1988, which was an entity of Black women dedicated to the fight against sexism, racism, and social inequalities, and the case of the Popular Legal Promoters, a project of feminist popular education founded in 1992.

At the same time, the state apparatus harbored the professionalization of feminists by creating posts related to women’s councils and ministry. As these public posts were submitted to the ruling parties, however, their occupants became conveyor belts of government policies.

In the following years, the relationship between Brazilian feminism and state institutions oscillated depending on the ruling party. If violence against women is an all-embracing agenda, the same cannot be said about the legalization of abortion and gender equality education. These conflicts will sharpen in the first decades of the 21st century.

Last but not least, it must be stressed that citizenship rights in Brazil face the segregation in poverty of a huge contingent of the population. Despite being one of the ten largest economies in the world, the country is also one of the countries in the world with the highest concentration of income and social inequality.19 This inequality affects mainly women, including Black women. Women earn lower wages and assume most family and household responsibilities. At the same time, Brazilian women are one of the social segments that stand out in the struggle for universal social, civil, sexual, and political rights.

Discussion of the Literature

The Beginnings

As in other parts of the western world, women’s studies in Brazil had their greatest impetus in the vigorous feminist movements of the 1970s. Inspired by the new perspective on the “excluded from history,” the works of the American, Joan Scott, and Michele Perrot, from France, aimed at bringing women out of historical invisibility. The introduction of the theme of women in academia can be attributed to Austrian-born American historian Gerda Lerner.20 Another pioneer was New Zealander, Juliet Mitchell, with her article “Women: The Longest Revolution,” published in the New Left Review in 1966, which was translated into Portuguese and published two years later. Interestingly, it reiterated the importance of Marxist analysis of social classes but also dialogued with psychoanalysis, philosophy, and the Parsonian theory of sexual roles.

In this sense, Mitchell went beyond the methodological and theoretical limits of official history and overcame the main problems pointed out by Lerner in the theoretical matrices from which history was told. “The structural-functionalist framework ignores class and gender issues, the traditional Marxist framework ignores gender and race issues as essentials” underlines Lerner.21

Therefore, not only was it a thematic change but also—especially—a change in the methodological and theoretical perspectives. The topics of housework doubling working hours, double standards in sexual morality, and inequalities within the family were the first to be addressed.

The political circumstances of Brazil—given the increasing oppression against intellectuals considered subversive as well as the huge purge that occurred at the end of 1968 at the University of São Paulo—prevented the development of topics and approaches considered incompatible with the dominant macho and conservative ideology.

The Consolidation of Women’s Studies in Brazil

For the above reasons, the first studies on the oppression of women were published outside academic walls and especially in the International Year of Women, which opened an important space for the discussion about the discrimination of women. It was at that time that a group of feminists founded the feminist periodical Nós Mulheres (We Women) (1976–1978) and the issue of women was dealt with by the media. Given the profound social inequalities in the country, it is not surprising that general concerns about social issues and especially regarding the poorer strata of women were the themes of the first articles published.

One of the most important moments in the consolidation of women’s studies was the launching of the Carlos Chagas Foundation’s first nationwide women’s research program, supported by the Ford Foundation in 1978, under the coordination of Carmen Barroso, who had a pioneering role in creating Brazil’s first and foremost women’s studies center.

The program offered research grants and accepted applications without restrictions of discipline or themes or requirements of either academic degrees or links to academic institutions. The results of this first contest were published in two volumes, covering issues of work, the press for women, traveling women in colonial Brazil, and images of women in films and in textbooks. A documentary on sex work was also funded.22

The expansion of the Year into a Decade of Women was decisive for the continuity of projects funded by the Ford Foundation (which funded a total of eight competitions held between 1978 and 1998). As a result of these projects, a critical mass of new themes and approaches greatly impacted Brazilian universities. This stimulus was also reflected outside the universities. The intense circulation of specialists across different areas—academia, public administration, NGOs, and political representation—has been cited as the main reason for the achievements of women and gender studies in Brazil.23

The introduction of the gender category as a useful tool for the history studies proposed by Joan Scott was translated into Portuguese in 1991 and soon became the most cited text for works produced by feminists in the decade of the 1990s.

Gender is actually an anti-essentialist concept, because the bipolarization of differences is the basis of racism and other forms of oppression. Gender is a concept whose story is rooted in two struggles: the struggle against patriarchies, and the struggle for the recognition of homosexuality. That is why in Iberian-American countries the use of the term “gender” has been violently attacked by Catholic and Evangelical churches under the rubric of so-called “gender ideology,” which supposedly violates divine laws regarding the family.

Women’s studies actually threatened the myth of the nuclear family constituted by a full-time mother and wife and a financially supportive husband. It introduced distinctions among prevailing models according to social strata and highlighted trends such as the growing presence of female-headed households. Other studies have focused on survival strategies, including forms of movement of children among households in the popular milieu. In addition, studies of women’s history have shown different forms of resistance and numerous struggles for their political rights, reproductive rights, and human rights.

Primary Sources

Government Archives

Arquivo Nacional

The National Archives of Brazil, created in 1838, is the Brazilian institution responsible for the management, preservation, and dissemination of federal government documents. The National Archives of Brazil thus fulfills a dual and essential function for the Brazilian State and society—both in the management of archival documents that are produced in all federal institutions and in safeguarding and giving access to fundamental documents for history. Its collection is accessible internationally through the internet or email.

Arquivo Público do Estado de São Paulo

The Public Archives of the State of São Paulo is the official archive depository for the State as well as the central agency in the System of Archives of the State of São Paulo, SAESP. It is the depository of the Archive of the State Department of Political and Social Order of São Paulo (DEOPS-SP) and of a collection of over 48,000 books, 235,000 copies of newspapers, and 30,000 copies of magazines.

Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatística (IBGE)

The Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) is the agency responsible for the official collection of statistical, geographical, and environmental information in Brazil.

IBGE performs a decennial national census covering economic and social information of Brazil’s populations as well as gender statistical data.

Biblioteca Nacional

The Brazilian National Library (BN), created in 1818, is the oldest Brazilian cultural institution and is responsible for the governmental politics of capture, storage, preservation, and diffusion of the country’s intellectual production. It is located in Rio de Janeiro and considered by UNESCO as one of the larger national libraries in the world and the first in Latin America, with a collection of approximately nine million items.

Museu da Imigração do Estado de São Paulo

The museum is located on the site of the Immigrant Inn and was inaugurated in 1887 when the ban on slave trade led the imperial government to finance the coming of immigrants to replace slave labor. The largest contingents came from Italy and Spain, but records show that immigrants of about seventy nationalities made up the two and a half million people who landed in Brazil between 1887 and 1978. The inn was the place where immigrants lived until the moment they were brought to the coffee plantations or industries. The last wave of immigrants was originally from Korea. Considered a national heritage building, the former Immigrant Inn became a museum in 1993. It is the most detailed archive of immigrant data in the country. The collected data can be accessed through the internet or email.

Public University Collections

Arquivo Leuenroth da UNICAMP

Located at the University of Campinas, São Paulo, the archive started with the collection of the anarchist movement donated by the journalist Edgard Leuenroth (1881–1968) and contains the most important collection of media and materials regarding Brazilian social and counterculture movements, including the anarchism and labor movements as well as the feminist movement. In addition, it is the depository of the collection Brazil: Never Again with the 5,000 political processes of the Military Justice during the military dictatorship (1964–1985). The collection includes some 280,000 documents, 28,000 books, 854 videos, 289 films, 1,419 audio recordings, and 45,000 photographs.

Private Collections

Centro de Pesquisa e Documentação de História Contemporânea do Brasil (CPDOC)

The Research and Documentation Center for Contemporary History of Brazil (CPDOC) is a part of the Getulio Vargas Foundation School of Social Sciences, created in 1973, and located in Rio de Janeiro. Its collections include several documentary sets donated to the CPDOC, which can be found in the Archives Guide, the country’s largest collection of personal archives of public figures, comprising approximately 200 funds.

In order to record Brazilian contemporary history, the Oral History Program started in 1975 and since then has been gathering testimonials from personalities who acted on the national scene. Currently with over 5,000 hours of recording—corresponding to nearly 1,000 interviews—much of which is open for consultation, the CPDOC oral history collection can be better known by consulting the Oral History database, totaling about 1.8 million documents. The organization of these files and their openness to public consultation, now fully computerized through the Accesses system, are the center’s primary focus. The documents in this collection are being progressively made available through the internet.

Further Reading

  • Alencastro, Luiz Filipe de. O trato dos viventes. São Paulo: Companhia das Letras, 2000.
  • Almeida, Mariléa de. “Território de afetos: práticas femininas antirracistas nos quilombos contemporâneos do Rio de Janeiro.” Tese de doutorado em História (doctoral thesis), Instituto de Filosofia e Ciências Humanas, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Campinas, São Paulo, 2018.
  • Blay, Eva, and Lucia Avelar, eds. 50 Anos de Feminismo: Argentina, Brasil e Chile. São Paulo: Editora Edusp, 2017.
  • Bruschini, Cristina. Mulher, Casa E Família: Cotidiano Nas Camadas Medias Paulistanas. São Paulo: Editora Vértice, 1990.
  • Campos, Augusto de. Pagu: vida e obra. São Paulo: Companhia das Letras, 2014.
  • Carneiro, Sueli. Racismo, sexismo e desigualdade no Brasil. São Paulo: Editora Selo Negro, 2011.
  • Corrêa, Mariza. “Do feminismo aos estudos de gênero no Brasil: um exemplo pessoal.” Cadernos Pagu 16 (2001): 13–30.
  • Dulles, John Foster W. Anarchists and Communists in Brazil, 1900–1935. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press, 1973.
  • Fachini, Regina. Sopa de Letrinhas?: movimento homossexual e produção de identidades coletivas nos anos 1990. Rio de Janeiro: Garamond, 2005.
  • Ferreira, Maria Nazareth. A imprensa operária no Brasil 1880–1920. Petrópolis: Vozes, 1978.
  • Gonçalves, Renata Cristina. “Vamos acampar: a luta terra e a busca pelo assentamento de novas relações de gênero no MST do Pontal do Paranapanema.” Tese de doutorado em Ciências Sociais (doctoral thesis), Instituto de Filosofia e Ciências Humanas. Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Campinas, São Paulo, 2005.
  • Green, James N. et al., orgs. História do Movimento LGBT no Brasil. São Paulo: Alameda Editorial, 2018.
  • Grossi, Miriam, Mara Lago, and Adriano Nuernberg, Estudos In (ter) disciplinados: Gênero, Feminismo, Sexualidades. Florianópolis: Editora Mulheres, 2010.
  • Heilborn, Maria Luiza, and Bila Sorj. “Estudos de gênero no Brasil.” In O que ler na ciência social brasileira (1970–1995). Edited by Sérgio Micelli. São Paulo: Editora Sumaré, 1999: 183–221.
  • Hirata, Helena. Nova Divisão Sexual do Trabalho. São Paulo: Editora Boitempo, 2005.
  • Moraes, Maria Lygia Quartim de. Militância Libertária. Revista de História da Biblioteca 133 (2015): 16–18.
  • Nogueira, Claudia Mazzei. O Trabalho Duplicado. A Divisão Sexual no Trabalho e na Reprodução, Um Estudo das Trabalhadoras do Telemarketing. São Paulo: Editora Expressão Popular, 2006.
  • Pimentel, Silvia, coord., Beatriz Pereira, and Monica Melo, orgs. Direito, Discriminação de Gênero e Igualdade. Rio de Janeiro: Lumen Juris Editora, 2017.
  • Pinto, Celi. Uma História do Feminismo no Brasil. São Paulo: Editora Perseu Abramo, 2007.
  • Rago, Margareth. Do cabaré ao lar: a utopia da cidade disciplinar e a resistência anarquista—Brasil 1890–1930. Rio de Janeiro: Editora Paz e Terra, 2009.
  • Rosemberg, Fulvia, and Regina Pahim. A Educação Da Mulher (Década Da Mulher). São Paulo: Conselho da Condição Feminina, 1985.
  • Saffioti, Heleieth. Gênero, Patriarcado e Violência. São Paulo: Fundação Perseu Abramo e Expressão Popular, 2004.
  • Scavone, Lucila. A maternidade e o feminismo: diálogo com as ciências sociais. Cadernos Pagu 16 (2001): 137–150.
  • Skidmore, Thomas. Politics in Brazil 1930–1964: An Experiment in Democracy–40th Anniversary Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007.
  • Tega, Danielle. Tempos de dizer, tempos de escutar. São Paulo: Editora Entrameios, 2019.
  • Teles, Amelinha, and Rosalina Santa Cruz Leite. Da guerrilha à imprensa feminista. A construção do feminismo pós-luta armada no Brasil (1975–1980). São Paulo: Editora Intermeios, 2013.


The first anthologies published by Fundação Carlos Chagas:

  • Bruschini, Maria Cristina, and Fulvia Rosemberg, org., Vivências: história, sexualidade e imagens femininas (São Paulo: Brasiliense, 1980).
  • Bruschini, Maria Cristina, and Fulvia Rosemberg, org., Trabalhadoras do Brasil (São Paulo: Brasiliense, 1982).
  • The feminist journal Nós Mulheres


  • 1. Isaias Dalle, 1917–2017. 100 anos de greve geral. Passado ou Futuro? (Sao Paulo: Fundação Perseu Abramo, 2017), 41.

  • 2. Glaucia Fracaro, Os direitos das mulheres: Feminismo e Trabalho no Brasil (19171937) (Rio de Janeiro: FGV Editora, 2018), 44.

  • 3. Glaucia Fracaro, Os direitos das mulheres: Feminismo e Trabalho no Brasil (19171937) (Rio de Janeiro: FGV Editora, 2018).

  • 4. Miriam L. Moreira Leite, Outra Face do Feminismo: Maria Lacerda de Moura (São Paulo: Editora Ática, 1984).

  • 5. Warren Dean, The industrialization of São Paulo (Austin: University of Texas Press, 2012).

  • 6. Maria Lacerda de Moura, Fascismo: filho dileto da igreja e do capital, 2. ed. (São Paulo: Editora Entremares, 2018), 170.

  • 7. Maria Lacerda de Moura, Fascismo: filho dileto da igreja e do capital, 175.

  • 8. Patrícia Galväo, Paixão Pagu. Uma biografia precoce de Patrícia Galvão, org. Geraldo Galvão Ferraz (Rio de Janeiro: Agir, 2005), 102.

  • 9. Mara Lobo (Patrícia Galvão), Parque Industrial. (Porto Alegre, São Paulo: EDUFScar, 1994), 40–41.

  • 10. Ibid., 47.

  • 11. Wage freeze

  • 12. Maria Lygia Quartim de Moraes, Marxismo, psicanálise e o feminismo brasileiro. Tomo 2: Movimentos sociais, cidadania e democracia no Cone Sul. Coleção Trajetória n. 9. (Campinas: IFCH-Unicamp, 2017).

  • 13. Vilmar Faria, “Desenvolvimento, urbanização e mudanças na estrutura do emprego: a experiência brasileira dos últimos trinta anos,” in Bila Sorj and Maria Hermínia Tavares Almeida, orgs., Sociedade política no Brasil pós-6l [online] (Rio de Janeiro: Centro Edelstein de Pesquisas Sociais, 2008), 182–244.

  • 14. Revista Cult, no. 235 (2018): 3.

  • 15. Ibid.

  • 16. Nancy Fraser, “Reconhecimento sem ética?” Lua Nova, Sao Paulo 70 (2007): 101–138

  • 17. Curso online sobre Lélia Gonzales e Beatriz Nascimento [Online course about Lélia Gonzales and Beatriz Nascimento]

  • 18. Maria Lygia Quartim de Moraes, “O Sistema judicial brasileiro e a definição do melhor interesse da criança,” Revista Estudos de Sociologia 19, no. 36 (2014).

  • 19. The World Bank in Brazil

  • 20. She was one of the founders of NOW and introduced a Master of Arts Program in Women History at Sarah Lawrence College in 1972.

  • 21. Gerda Lerner, “Placing Women in History,” Feminist Studies 3, no. 1/2 (Autumn 1975): 12.

  • 22. Mulheres da Boca (short film) Original material: 16 mm, COReBP, 22 min, 230 m, 24 q São Paulo, 1981.

  • 23. Maria Luiza Heilborn and Bila Sorj, “Estudos de gênero no Brasil,” in Sérgio Miceli, org., O que ler na ciência social brasileira (1970–1995), ANPOCS/CAPES (São Paulo: Editora Sumaré, 1999), 183–221.