Latin America should turn to its women’s movements when rebuilding after COVID-19

Amalia Fischer

Feminism in Latin America is perhaps one of the most vibrant and enduring social movements in the world. Dating back more than 40 years, the organisation of women’s rights movements in Latin America has a rich history of interconnected networks propelling it forward, long before organising on social media entered the picture. And facing today’s challenges when the movement for women’s rights is as critical as ever, feminism can rely on its strong history as a social movement.

Today, the path carved out by previous generations has lent impetus to the work of current feminists, even – perhaps especially – in the face of the COVID-19 crisis.

#NiUnaMenos protest in Lima, Peru. Photo: Lorena Flores Agüero

In 2015, the ‘Ni una Menos’ (‘Not one woman less’) movement, which borrowed its name from the Mexican feminist movement against the female homicides in Juárez ‘Ni una muerta más’ (‘Not one more woman dead’), was born in Argentina. The movement, which began by encouraging the reporting of female homicides and violence against women, grew into a viral phenomenon. The same happened at a global level with ‘Las Tesis’, a Chilean feminist theatre group, which created ‘Un violador en tu camino’ (‘A Rapist in Your Path’), to be presented five days before 25 November 2019, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. The group managed, through culture, to demonstrate that rape is a hate crime, and their movement was adapted by many worldwide.

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