A new Brazilian woman

Ana Dutra
Posted November 7, 2011 from Brazil

I read this article, of a columnist for the newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo and for radio station Eldorado, and thought it was worth to share. It’s great news about women’s importance for the economy. The author emphasizes it is possible to see things are getting better for women, even if it’s walking with baby steps. I bet the same thing has happened in some other parts of this world, though I also know in some places women are still treated as disrespect.

By Sonia Racy

With the improvement of Brazil’s economy, the nation has witnessed a strong growth of the class C, especially when it comes to women. In the era of President Dilma and her various female ministers, an Ibope poll stated: women from this class are currently mostly responsible for household budgets. They are the ones who handle the bills, deciding everything from food shopping to how disposable income will be applied. The institute’s findings fit with a study conducted by Data Popular, which concluded that it is also women who are responsible for no less than 37% of the total income of the middle class – a figure around 158 billion reais (Brazilian currency) in 2010.

To get an idea of the speed at which this took place, eight years ago, of every 100 women that bought lotions, 45 were from class C. Last year this number jumped to 53. On the other hand, classes A and B saw their participation fall to just 33 out of every 100 female representatives.

The website Tempo de Mulher, run by journalist Ana Paula Padrão (tempodemulher.com.br), was created with the niche market in mind. One of the evaluations conducted states that the formal income of these women, between 2002 and the present, grew significant 68.2%, Meanwhile, men’s earnings during this period grew less than 30%.

Working, caring for the home, being mothers, daughters and friends are things women from class C do standing on their heads, according to the studies. However, differently from what happened in the past, they no longer deprive themselves of their femininity. The evolution of the species yielded distinct courses for men and women. And while living side by side, they present characteristics which distinguish them in decisive ways. There was a time that women fought for equality. Now they want to enjoy the differences.

But there is another less positive difference: in all classes, women work more than men. And the disparity increases significantly as the income decreases. In other words, those earning less are working more.

Comments 1

Log in or register to post comments
  • Stella Paul
    Nov 07, 2011
    Nov 07, 2011

    Dear Ana

    Thank you for sharing this insight into the economic status of Brazilian women. Its indeed good to see the purchasing power is increasing. The contribution of labor has always been more from women - and thats an universal trend - but at least now they are being paid for it, even if partially.

    The challenge ahead is,of course to see that the upward trend doesn't come down or stagnate and that ultimately, women do get paid for all of their work. For women voters, I think this can also be a good yardstick to judge the performance of a govt, before election.

    Looking forward to learn more from you in coming days!