“The Xavante ethnic group is totally patriarchal, always highlighting the social political role of men in the leadership of our communities. We are prepared from an early age for this occupation, while women also exercise this role, but in a discreet and behind-the-scenes way,” explained the professor Paulo Cipassé Xavante, chief of the Xavante ethnic group, in the Wederã village of the Pimentel Barbosa Indigenous Land, in Mato Grosso. He is one of the advocates for the greater presence of women in leadership roles. “I am the father of a female daughter, and if she chooses to be a chief or a leader, she would have my full support. Times are different and, through school education, meetings and work, women have been trained for this occupation too, and they have mine. full support,” he said.
There are no official consolidated data on female indigenous leadership, but for those who live the movement’s daily life, the growing strength of women is expressive.
“We women need to be heard and respected within the indigenous movement and always have our place to speak, because women are important in guiding and teaching our children so that in the future, future women do not suffer because of this cultural machismo. advancing each day, but little by little. And this cannot stop. The struggle is daily. We are the bases of our people”, said Angela Maria Teixeira dos Santos, known as Angela Tapeba, 37, from Tapeba Cipó village, in Caucaia (CE ).