Warriors of the Cerrado: Women in the Environmental Struggle

Event highlights environmental resilience and its importance for protecting the biome

18.04.24 - 17h49

Held at Universidade Lusófona - Centro Universitário Porto on 22 March 2024, the event "The Brazilian Cerrado has a woman's face: there are no free territories in imprisoned bodies" brought crucial debates about the role of women in the most biodiverse biome on the planet.

The event highlighted the vital presence of women in the Cerrado, including indigenous people from various traditional peoples and communities such as quilombolas, geraizeiras, ribeirinhas and babaçu coconut breakers. The opening, given by Carla Cerqueira, Director of the Doctorate in Communication and Activism at Lusófona University, kicked off an afternoon of reflection in partnership with Rosângela Corrêa, General Director of the Cerrado Museum at the Faculty of Education at the University of Brasília.

Rosângela expressed the urgency of protecting the Cerrado, highlighting the direct relationship between the destruction of the biome and the genocide of traditional peoples, especially women. She emphasised the need to confront violence against their bodies and territories, a battle marked by resistance and resilience. "Without water there are no children. It's time to act to ensure that the voices of Cerrado women are heard and that their territory is protected for future generations," she explained.

Quoting a phrase by Emília Costa, leader of the Women Warriors of Resistance group of the Quilombola Movement of Maranhão (MOQUIBOM) - "I am the Cerrado" - the subsequent debate led by the deputy director of the PhD in Communication and Activism, Célia Taborda, consolidated the ideas discussed. Her words highlighted the intrinsic connection between women's struggle for the liberation of their bodies and the defence of their territories.

One of the points Professor Pimentel addressed was the process of recruiting PIDE informers. Many of the informers were initially arrested and then recruited by the regime to begin their espionage activities.

The Brazilian savannah is in danger, with less than half of its original area preserved in the last 40 years. Protecting the Cerrado is not only an environmental issue, but also a question of social justice and the preservation of life.

See photos of the event on ULusófona's Facebook page  

Photograph and Cover
Patrícia Lopes


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