Note from BW of BRAZIL: As we have done for the past three years, today we recognize the International Afro-Latin American and Afro-Caribbean Women’s Day. The history, struggles, challenges and experiences of Brazilian women of African descent is the very reason for the existence of this blog. And on this day, along with the afro-brasileiras, we celebrate black women from Colombia, Puerto Rico, Ecuador, Peru, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Venezuela and any other country within the region of Latin America and the Caribbean!
International Latin American and Caribbean Black Women’s Day
By Fabiana Yuka
Although corresponding to 53% of Brazilians, the black population still struggles to eliminate inequalities and discrimination. There are about 97 million people, and even being the majority, they are under-represented in the legislature, executive, judiciary, media and other spheres. In the case of gender, the gap is even greater. Despite the low representation of Black Women in politics and positions of power and of decision every ascension must to be celebrated in recognition.
For the president of the Palmares Cultural Foundation (FCP-MinC), Cida Abreu, Brazil still reveals itself as racist. The demands of the black social movement became part of the political agenda starting with the government of former President Lula da Silva. The Racial Equality Statute (Law 12.288/2010), formed the basis for the preparation of the PPA. It has been a reference to the quotas in public competitions and universities, as one of the ways to move forward to reduce and repair these inequalities, reinforced.
Feminismo Negro (Black Feminism) – From 1992, in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, with the completion of the 1st Meeting of Afro-Latin American and Afro-Caribbean Women, creating the Women’s Network Afro-Latin American and Afro-Caribbean and setting July 25 as the Dia da Mulher Afro-latino-americana e Caribenha (Afro-Latin American and Caribbean Women’s Day).
The date – Law No. 12,987/2014 was sanctioned by President Dilma Rousseff, as the Dia Nacional de Tereza de Benguela e da Mulher Negra (National Day of Tereza Benguela and of the Black Woman). Tereza Benguela was a quilombo leader, lived during the 18th century with the death of her mate, Tereza became the queen of the quilombo, and under her leadership, the black and indigenous community resisted slavery for two decades, surviving until 1770, when the quilombo was destroyed by the forces of Luiz Pinto de Souza Coutinho and the population (79 blacks and 30 Indians), killed or imprisoned.
Honored – Just like Tereza, other women were and are important to our history. With impeccable work and perseverance, they have left a legacy that is up to us revere and give visibility to the emancipation of black women as a way to honoring them; Antonieta de Barros, Aqualtune, Theodosina Rosário Ribeiro, Benedita da Silva, Jurema Batista, Leci Brandão, Chiquinha Gonzaga, Ruth de Souza, Elisa Lucinda, Conceição Evaristo, Maria Filipa, Luiza Mahin, Maria Conceição Nazaré (Mãe Menininha de Gantois), Lélia Gonzalez, Dandara, Carolina Maria de Jesus, Elza Soares, Mãe Stella de Oxóssi, among many others (1).
Source: Fundação Cultural Palmares
1. A number of these women are featured in the photo at the top of this post.