By Nathan M. Walters, Senior Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The feminist movement in Rio remains active in pursuing the goal of equal treatment for women.  Yesterday’s Marchas das Vadias (SlutWalk), which drew a rumbling crowd of approximately 400 protesters to Copacabana, demonstrated that many in Rio still feel discriminated against.

Protesters in Copacabana for the second annual SlutWalk in Rio, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil News
Protesters in Copacabana for the second annual SlutWalk in Rio, photo by Nathan M. Walters.

The SlutWalks are coordinated protests intended to raise awareness of prejudices about rape victims’ behavior.    

Yesterday was the second edition of the SlutWalk in Rio and coincided with similar events that took place in other cities in Brazil and around the globe.  The motto of the movement, “Because We Have Had Enough”, has become a phrase of solidarity for women around the world.

The SlutWalk initially started in 2011 in Toronto, a response to police officials warning that, to avoid being raped, women should not dress like sluts. 

These views of rape victims are still perpetuated in Rio, according to one protester who mentioned, “If a woman is raped in Rio the police are going to ask her what she was wearing, what time was she out, suggesting that it was her behavior is what prompted the rape.  This is absurd.”

The protest started from Avenida Atlantica and moved up Rua Hilário de Gouveia where it stopped in front of the station of the civil police.  Once there, a mixed group of men and women, chanted and made speeches for approximately thirty minutes before heading back to Avenida Atlantica.

One spectator mentioned, “I am surprised there were not more people.  I have seen videos of this in other cities and they seemed much bigger.”  

São Paulo’s version of the walk included approximately a 1,000 protesters.  What the real impact of the SlutWalk for feminism is has yet to be seen, though, at least Rio’s version, was a great success in drawing attention to the cause.

Read more (in Portuguese).

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