Forty women are advancing along the Calle Mayor de Macastre, a town of 1,200 inhabitants of the interior of Valencia. "It's not no!", "More charge and less work!", They chant. From the windows, some neighbors hit pots and cheers them. The men watch them pass by. As in Macastre, outside the focus on cities, The 8th of March is celebrated this Friday in hundreds of towns Spanish women of small and medium size, according to the Federation of Rural Women's Associations.
"When I was 14 years old I began to work picking peas, carob and olives, we had to walk 10 or 12 kilometers, then I was a baker, my parents had an oven that my brother stayed when I got married, I have always worked at all times. In four years, and we did not have running water at home, I helped my husband in the construction company, and now I have a small payment because I paid my autonomous 15 years, "says Vicenta Miralles, 75 years old.
At the beginning of the nineties, she and other women founded the Association of Women of Macastre, and for 28 years they have been demonstrating every March 8th. "We claim that women are worth the same, men believe more, and not," he says.
"For a long time the rural world was in tow, but for many years feminism came to him and lately there is an explosion, "says Teresa López, president of the Federation of Rural Women's Associations (Fademur). "Women are in the villages added difficulties to develop their lives, such as the lack of employment and public services, which makes the burden of care that falls on them is even greater," Lopez continues, "which forces them to leave. " That makes it a masculinized medium, where, unlike the rest of the country, there are more men than women, 51% compared to 49%, according to the federation. In Macastre, for example, 657 men live by 583 women. One of the consequences of the imbalance is that it accelerates depopulation.
Work in the rural world is based largely on self-employment. In addition to common problems throughout the medium, such as the limited Internet connection that many areas suffer, which makes it difficult to start up new businesses, women face other individuals. The main one, says López, is that although family farms usually work with couples made up of a man and a woman, the title is almost always in the name of the former, while the law passed in 2011 to encourage it to pass to being shared has barely advanced in much of Spain.
"We meet many women who are farmers and work in the day to day of their exploitation, but to do any management have to ask their husbands to sign an authorization because they are not the owners. being listed in the agrarian social security appear as family help and do not count as receivers of income, because all are assigned to the owner of the farm, with which they can not make their income statement, nor have the right to pay only for the policy common agricultural ", affirms the president of Fademur.
One of the effects, warns María Sánchez, veterinarian, poet and author of the essay Land of WomenIt is the official invisibility. "All these women who do all that work in addition to domestic chores, if they do not come out in the statistics, how are we going to know them, how are we going to claim something about which we do not have a number, something that is not seen, that is not counted? "
Now that there are so many dangers linked to social networks, the sociologist Cristina Hernández emphasizes, instead, how these tools have contributed to the rise of the struggle of women for equality in Spain in general and especially in rural areas. "Feminism is a political theory, a social movement and an agenda that does not allow for representation, it is horizontal and that is why it gets along very well with social networks, through which we have realized that we were not alone, allowed to meet people with the same sensibilities ".
Change the story
Rural feminism defends changing the story that has described its world in the last decades and that, according to Sánchez, oscillates between the idealization of Walden's cabin described by Henry David Thoreau and the truculence of The Innocent Saints, by Miguel Delibes. One of the scripts that aspire to change is the one that says that it is more difficult to get out of the gender violence in the villages because in them everyone knows each other and in that way it is more complicated to take the step. "We are convinced that this, instead of being a problem, can be an opportunity, that this small society can be raised to act as a network of support for women that isolates the abuser", affirms the president of the Federation of Rural Women's Associations.
The media demands, in any case, specific measures to fight against sexist violence, whose application López urgently demands: "In rural areas, the lack of anonymity reduces the time to look for information about the resources that victims have at their disposal. The information has to be accessible in places where women usually go and do not have to be identified as points of attention to gender violence. this fight as spearhead ".