Brasilien: Rose Marie Muraro

One, who loves, does not compete. Peace depends on the end of the social debt that the developed world has to human beings.

— Rose Marie Muraro

Rose Marie Muraro (born 1930) was one of the pioneers in Brazil's feminist movement. All of her work is connected to the defense of human rights and women's rights, a militancy that she began in the 1940s together with progressive segments of the Catholic church. All together, Muraro published 26 books, always with the purpose of “giving women the power of speech.”

When she started her militancy in the Catholic Action, in 1946, with Bishop Hélder Câmara, sexuality was still a taboo in Brazilian society. The task of beginning the debates on this subject was given to Rose Marie Muraro. In the 1980s, her book on the sexuality of the Brazilian woman was on the best-seller list for six months. In 1971, when she promoted the visit to Brazil of Betty Friedman, a North American feminist, Rose Marie Muraro contributed greatly to increasing feminism's popularity. Four years later, she was one of the founders of the Brazilian Women's Center. In 1985, she joined the National Council of Woman's Rights, an inedited experience in Brazil. During the Brazilian military regime, she had her work prohibited as it was classified by the censor as pornographic. She paid a high price for being a pioneer in the feminist battle, and, for many years, she was discriminated by Brazilian society for her ideas. This stigma still follows her, even though her contribution to the feminist cause has been recognized during the past 20 years, the period after the end of the military dictatorship. Her great passion, during 74 years of life, was the defense of human rights and of equality between men and women. Nowadays, she still believes that it is impossible to attain peace while there is still inequality. Mother of five children, grandmother of 12 grandchildren and one great-grandchild, Muraro needs, now, help from her family to survive, because she has faced many health problems in the past three years. In spite of her enormous level of myopia that makes her technically blind, reading and writing is part of her daily work routine in her modest apartment in the district of Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, the city where she was born.