Priscila Susin, Hermílio Santos

Gender, violence and social changes. Biographical research with women living in favelas of Rio de Janeiro

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Biographical Research; Gender; Mobility; Favelas; Violence.

This paper explores the debate on gender, class and generational expe¬riences as constitutive parts of biographies of women living in "favelas" of Rio de Janeiro. Although women are important protagonists of favelas' formation and development, they have been exhaustively denied or accentuated in historical documents through stereotyped perspectives: i.e. focus on practical domestic activities and traditional female virtues like innocence and morality, or the contradiction of these gender roles by being «depraved», «indecent» and «sinful». Simultaneously, the pro¬duction of spatiality in low-income urban areas has been increasingly connected by comprehensive sociological approaches to the incorpo¬ration and transformation of gender, class and ethnical social roles as micro-level space-making practices. To apprehend different biographical and everyday life processes in such contexts, we interviewed two ge¬nerations of women within different families living in favelas of Rio de Janeiro. In this article we explore one case reconstruction, analysed according to Gabriele Rosenthal's biographical approach, and grounding interpretation in the Schutzian sociology. It represents a case of intra-urban experiences as cornerstones for social changes and continuities regarding processes of exclusion and generation of social capital for social mobility in marginalised areas. Special emphasis is given to the key role of violence in the interviewees' interpretation and responses in everyday life and its impact on their life history.

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