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The Argentine anthropologist Rita Segato was in Colombia this week, where years ago she spoke for the first time about the concept of the mandate of masculinity. On Thursday, in a meeting with lawyers and human rights defenders in Bogota, she recalled where that idea came from, which she continues to come back to every time she talks about the Colombian reality or that of any other country that suffers the violence of the confrontation. navy. Segato tells that she was in Buenaventura, without indicating a specific year. In the Colombian Pacific, a group of black women asked her how to stop the war. The Argentine did not hesitate to respond: “Dismantling the mandate of masculinity,” she said then.
The concept is repeated now to talk about why it is useless to think of armistices or pacts to end violence. “Men are prepared to be part of the war by the mandate of masculinity, by obedience to an internal law that tells them that it is necessary to be cruel in order to be called a man. It’s supremely stupid,” says Segato. “If we dismantle that mandate and tell men that it is not convenient for them to obey it, that they run, that they erase themselves, because they are going to be much happier, then there will be no one to recruit for wars.”
Rita Segato finds it hard to believe what she heard upon her arrival in Colombia. The country has been immersed in an absurd controversy for weeks because the vice president, who has been the victim of attacks and threats, sometimes travels by helicopter for safety. “I definitely do not have the greatness of Francia Marquez. I hate these things, but have you seen how she answers? Look at the response he gave to that pseudo-white woman, as almost all of us are on our continent, when he compared her to a gorilla: He sent her a hug!” Segato recalls with admiration one of the many racist episodes with which he has had to deal. deal with the vice president of Colombia.
The Argentine says that she followed the presidential elections of this country with amazement. The images of canoes full of people who, regardless of the rain or the distance, wanted to vote, made headlines around the world. For Segato it was a sign of the power of Francia Marquez to mobilize peoples who for the first time saw themselves represented on an electoral card. . “It is the great victory of France”, he assures without hesitation. She believes that a government with a feminist agenda, like the one Gustavo Petro claims, would expect women to really have a voice in the decisions that lead this country.
“Petro, who calls himself a feminist, would be expected to listen to Francia Marquez a lot,” warns Segato, who insists that feminist debates and speeches must also speak to men. During her visit to Bogota met one afternoon with soldiers because he says there’s no point in just talking to each other.
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