Proceedings of The Global Conference on Women’s Studies
Feminist Activism Through the Arts in Late 19th Century and Early 20th Century. A Diachronic Comparative Study Between Portugal and Brazil
Carvalho, Isabel Cristina; Heemann, Christiane; Oliveira, Teresa
Brazil and Portugal are two countries that, although geographically located on different continents, share history (from 1500 to 1822 when Brazil was a Portuguese colony), the same language (Portuguese), very high rates of domestic violence and situations of gender inequality. The growth of fundamentalist and ultraconservative political parties around the world is currently being observed, which are threatening the struggle for gender equality and the conquest of acquired rights. Both in Portugal and Brazil, new parties with extremist discourses and ideologies that perpetuate patriarchal societies are also growing. It is crucial to continue breaking paradigms and remembering history, particularly the moments marked by the struggle and conquest of human rights. Many women have fought for the rights and policies for gender equality, against gender biases, as well as for building women’s citizenship in and through education. Taking as a reference the post-independence period of Brazil and conducting a diachronic comparative study of feminist activist artists from these two countries, we gathered and related inspiring examples of feminine resistance and resilience. We analyzed different female approaches that surprised by the originality and creativity of their acts. We present similarities and differences in how Portuguese and Brazilian women with access to culture and artistic practice, from painting, sculpture, theater, fashion, dance, writing, positioned themselves and manifested themselves in the face of these social and cultural inequalities in late 19th century and early 20th century.
Keywords: Art activism; equal rights; feminism; gender biases; women empowerment.