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Women's Emancipation and Civil Society OrganisationsChallenging or Maintaining the Status Quo?$
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Christina Schwabenland, Chris Lange, Jenny Onyx, and Sachiko Nakagawa

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781447324775

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447324775.001.0001

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The role of civil society organisations in emancipating Portuguese Roma women

The role of civil society organisations in emancipating Portuguese Roma women

(p.235) Eleven The role of civil society organisations in emancipating Portuguese Roma women
Women's Emancipation and Civil Society Organisations

Raquel Rego

Policy Press

This chapter describes the ways in which Portuguese Roma women have found opportunities for their emancipation through participating in Roma associations. Portugal generally falls within the framework of the southern European pattern in terms of social participation, citizenship and voluntary association affiliations. This pattern often correlates with a history of dictatorship, low levels of education and a tradition of informal participation rooted in the Catholic religion. Nevertheless, the Portuguese Roma display very different behaviours concerning their emancipation through participation in associations, and cannot be categorised as fitting within this pattern. The authors’ research suggests that although Portuguese Roma associations have been founded in recent decades they did not get beyond the first stage in their life cycles. In fact, their development seems to run counter to more traditional Roma forms of organisation. Nevertheless, for some Roma women their engagement in these associations seems to prove particularly successful.

Keywords:   Roma women, voluntary associations, Portugal, emancipation, social participation

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