Mulheres na luta armada em Angola: memória, cultura e emancipação

Leading researcher: Margarida Paredes
Research group: Circulation and Place-Making
Type of project: Doctoral research
Status: Concluded
Keywords: Africa | Angola | Liberation struggle | Colonialism | Civil war | Female excombatants | Guerrilla girls | Gender

Main institution: CRIA
Participant institutions: n.a.
Funding: FCT
Reference: SFRH/BD/44012/2008
Starting date: 01-01-09

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The history of contemporary Angola is inseparable from the wars and conflicts that lasted from 1961 to 2002, including the national liberation struggle and the post-independence civil war. One of the most striking aspects of those wars was the participation of women as fighters, whose role is the theme of this dissertation. Due to the absence of research on these women, the thesis focuses on retrieving the ex-fighters’ memories and on their narrativization in the present, through interviews focused on military life. The thesis also addresses the women’s (re)construction of identity in a male-dominated social system. The main hypothesis is that women’s participation in the armed struggle strengthened their fight for emancipation and equality by resorting to roles that were previously forbidden to them. Resistance, agency, and the representation of “female masculinities” (Halberstam 1998) allowed women to negotiate the dominant gender order and to perform identities that were marked by gender ambiguity, thus reinventing themselves as subjects. The thesis also contributes to an archive of female memories of colonial crimes, anticolonial resistance, national liberation struggles, and the civil war, as well as of internal conflicts such as the 27th May, 1977 events. Their present difficulties and frustrations in the post-colonial situation, regarding the lack of recognition of their past role, are also addressed.

Researchers from CRIA

IDNamePositionProjTitleProject typeStatus
pub139*Miguel Vale de AlmeidaSupervisorproj103*Mulheres na luta armada em Angola: memória, cultura e emancipaçãoDoctoral researchConcluded
pub265*Margarida ParedesResearch scholarproj103*Mulheres na luta armada em Angola: memória, cultura e emancipaçãoDoctoral researchConcluded
Other researchers