“It confirms the predestined path of the black woman within the white hetero patriarchy”, says writer Bianca Santana

Igor Carvalho / Translated by: Ítalo Piva
Only 20 black women are running for mayor in Brazil’s 26 state capitals in 2020. In relation to the total number of candidates (317), they represent 6.3%. When compared to the total number of black candidates (107) they account for only 18.6%.

For writer and journalist Bianca Santana, these numbers are “terrible” and are evidence of “the position black women have within political parties”.

“The fact that only a little over 6% of the mayoral candidacies in state capitals are black women, reaffirms the racism and sexism of institutional white politics and the hetero patriarchy, seeing as we represent around 25% of the population”, affirmed Santana.

Five leftist parties account for 55% of the total number of black women running for mayor in the state capitals. Another nine parties sum up the remaining 45%.

Therefore, out of the 33 political parties in the country, 19 have no female black candidacies in these mayoral contests. Santana highlights the fact that even in 2020, having black women running for city council with little to no support, is “the height of anti-racism in Brazilian politics”.

In 12 of the nation’s capitals, almost half of the entire country, there will be no black women running for mayor.

The city that has the largest number of black female candidates is Rio de Janeiro (RJ), with 3 women, Benedita da Silva, Renata Souza and Suêd Haidar in the race.

According to Bianca Santana, the candidacies of Áurea Carolina in Belo Horizonte, the state capital of Minas Gerais, Olívia Santana in Salvador, in the state of Bahia, and that of Renata Souza in Rio de Janeiro, “give us a little hope” because of their commitment to the feminist and anti-racist struggle, however, “the 6% figure makes it clear that we have a long road ahead”.