School of Social and Political Science

An intersectional approach to the community-building aspect of hashtag feminism in Brazil

05 October 2022
16:00 - 17:30


Chrystal Macmillan Building, Seminar Room 1


This talk focuses on the  community-building aspect of digital feminist mobilisations  in Brazil and its inequalities, unravelling feelings of belonging and alienation that result from social organizing around a common cause and the ways in which these feelings relate to the histories of feminist activism more broadly. While the creation of feminist collectives online often lead to a public demand for accountability and personal reflection on different levels, they also reproduce limitations in terms of building sustained change that belong to a long legacy of conflict amongst groups involved in collective struggle. Hence, I delve into theorizations of intersectionality, demonstrating how building campaigns with intersectional lenses demands more than adding different identities to the mix “and stir”. I situate intersectionality within debates about the work of coalitional politics in order to think projects of difference, bringing theory and praxis into the discussion in order to illuminate the current limitations of Brazilian digital feminist activism and community coalitions more broadly. In this talk, I will argue that hashtag campaigns repeat feminist activism’s history of radicality and co-option, but with new sets of limitations and potentials that further limits the pursuit of social justice. 

Bio: I am a researcher and lecturer currently teaching Sociology of Emotions and Sociology of Intimate Relationships at the University of Edinburgh. I am also part of the research project Connecting during Covid-19: Practices of care, remittance sending and digitisation among UK’s migrant communities, based at Queen Mary University and in partnership with SOAS and UCL's Institute of Education. This project has been receiving widespread media attention, with articles about our work being published at the BBC, the Khaleej Times and the World Bank. 
I received my PhD in Media and Gender Studies at the University of West London with a thesis about emotions and online feminist activism in Brazil, looking at hashtags as digital consciousness-raising and exploring the sociology of emotions in cyberfeminisms. I also hold a Masters in Gender, Sexuality and the Body from the School of Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Leeds. 

See full Sociology Seminar Series - Semester 1 - 2022/23


Key speakers

  • Gabriela Loureiro (University of Edinburgh)