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Heleieth Saffioti's conception of the loose knot: the tangle of patriarchy-racism-capitalism

Grant number: 23/17726-6
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2024
Effective date (End): May 31, 2025
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Philosophy - Brazilian Philosophy
Principal Investigator:Yara Adario Frateschi
Grantee:Massilânia Bezerra de Oliveira
Host Institution: Instituto de Filosofia e Ciências Humanas (IFCH). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil


The concept of the loose knot was formulated by Heleieth Saffioti to explain the fusion that, according to the author, has occurred historically between capitalism, racism and patriarchy. Although there are indications that this concept reached its most refined stage in Gender, patriarchy, violence (Saffioti, 2004), it is possible to see that in previous writings the author was already, in some way, approaching this formulation. With this in mind, this research project aims to investigate the genesis and development process of the concept of the loose knot. To this end, we will analyze, above all, The Power of the Male (Saffioti, 1987) and Gender, Patriarchy, Violence (Saffioti, 2004). In the first text, although Saffioti doesn't actually present the concept of the loose knot, there is an argumentative structure that hints at its genesis. In the second text, one of her last, the concept appears explicitly and is described in detail, perhaps in its most refined formulation.

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