popular
Image courtesy of Érica Malunguinho .

This Afro-Brazilian Activist Has Become the First Transgender Woman Elected to State Congress in São Paulo

Érica Malunguinho's win is a bright spot in Brazil's controversial elections.

On Monday, Afro-Brazlian activist and community leader Érica Malunguinho made history as the first transgender woman to win a post in state congress in Sâo Paulo, reports Remezcla.

Malunhuinho, is one of more than 50 transgender candidates ran for office in Monday's election, according to NBC. The community organizer is also one of "The Seeds of Marielle"—the 231 black women who ran for public office, following in the footsteps of the late Afro-Brazilian activist Marielle Franco.

READ: The Seeds of Marielle: These Courageous Afro-Brazilian Women Are Running For State Office Despite the Odds

Keep reading... Show less
Featured
Image courtesy of Érica Malanguinho.

The Seeds of Marielle: These Courageous Afro-Brazilian Women Are Running for State Office Despite the Odds

Here are 11 of the inspirational black women running for political office in Brazil's upcoming national elections.

Marielle Franco, 38, a black politician from Rio de Janeiro, died fighting for the rights of women and favela dwellers. On March 14 armed men gunned the councilwoman down in her car in the center of Rio de Janeiro with nine shots—four to the head.

Her assassination hit black women hard.

As a councilwoman from the Maré favela, she denounced the police brutality that favela residents, most of them black, regularly experienced. Many black women felt it was a direct attack on the potential of black women to ascend to power in politics. But her assassination came at a unique time—six months before Brazil's state and national elections. After Marielle's death, black women felt empowered to run for political office and in this year's elections, black women candidates are more visible than ever. These women are now collectively called the "Sementes de Marielle"—the seeds of Marielle.

The national elections take place on October 7. There are 231 black women running for political office in the state of Rio de Janeiro—almost twice the 2014 number (125). They are running for governor, deputy federal and state deputy. This should come as no surprise, black women make up 27 percent of Brazil—the largest group. The candidates represent the diversity of black women in Brazil. They are evangelical. They follow Afro-Brazilian religions. Some are from favelas. Some grew as middle class. Some are college-educated.

Below is a sampling of the seeds of Marielle.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.