Empowerment Representations of Girls and Women in Brazilian Children's Literature
This paper aims to discuss the construction of black women's and girls' identities based on the analysis of children's literature used in schools in Brazil. It analyzes the material and symbolic aspects under which gender, racial and ethnic inequalities are socially constructed in educational processes. The discussion points to an 'invisible pedagogy' for children's books, which refers to the possibility of transmitting values and forms of social exclusion through children's literature. In particular, children's books are very powerful tools for transmitting or deconstructing identity models. It presents analyzes on the presence of stereotyped messages present in books, both in text and images, describing the changes that have occurred in the most recent publications. It highlights the challenge of breaking with the binary logic, gender hierarchy, and the myth of racial democracy that permeates social relations. In addition, it points out the need to reflect on prejudices, gender, and racial ethnicity discriminations of institutional sexism in the educational process. Being born a black girl carries social markers that influence her experiences. Feminicide, black genocide, and the multiple mechanisms for the exclusion from power spaces give clues to the effects of gender inequality and structural racism on society. The research is based on two main procedures: bibliographic research and analysis of children's literature with representations of black women and girls, aimed at children. Gender and women's studies, especially black women studies, make up the theoretical framework of the research that provides us with elements to give visibility to anti-hegemonic processes in existence and resistance. The results problematize the social markers of gender, race, and age differences and discussing the processes of subordination and unequal power relations, which structure unequal social positions and contribute to the construction of an image and aesthetics marked by the disqualification of the body of the 'other'. It discusses the representation of the female black female body in a patriarchal, Christian, and ethnocentric society, in which black culture and aesthetics are invisible. In addition to denunciation of gender and racial prejudice, which has perverse effects on the lives of girls and women, the results of this research contribute to give visibility to the processes of empowerment since the first relationships in childhood.