‘El violador en tu camino’ – the Next Feminist Movement

The next feminist movement has taken hold of the world with ‘El violador en tu camino’, a feminist chant that was created by Las Tesis, a female theatre group in Valparaiso, Chile.

Many of the recent protests in Chile have had a strong female voice with the women of Santiago frequently going onto the streets to rebel against the violence and misogyny that still prevails in society. With multiple feminist protests having taken place throughout the weeks of unrest in the country, the phenomenon of “Un violador en tu camino” spread across Chile within days, and has now become and international anthem for feminists across the globe.

The song started as part of a play that was never performed for a local theatre in Valparaiso, a small town on the coast of Chile known for it ‘radical’ and left-wing environment. The chant made its debut on the streets of Valparaiso as part of a series of feminist demonstrations which took place between November 18th and 23rd in Valparaiso, organised by La Peste theatre group. Initially only a small disruption on the street, the demonstration went viral on social media as more and more women wanted to add their voices to the defiant battle cry.

“After Valparaiso, people started to contact us from all over Chile, asking if we could go to Temuco, Valdivia, and other places too.”, La Tesis explained to BBC World News.

When the call came from Santiago, only an hour and a half journey from Valparaiso, the group decided to take advantage of the opportunity, gathering around 100 women to perform in the streets of the capital.

It didn’t stop there. Soon groups from Mexico, Colombia, and other Latin American countries were asking to join the movement, and it was then that Las Tesis decided to add music to the chant. Since then, countries across the world have joined in the song, such as Spain, France and Germany.

La Tesis commented “In the case of Chile, it has reawakened a memory that is still vivid, of the dictatorship and the violence that the state can exercise over the people”.

Only a few years after the #MeToo and #Niunamenos swept the globe, the chant of La Tesis serves to show the world that these issues still prevail and that many women still suffer violence and inequality. The chant translates as “an oppressive state is like a rapist”, and “it wasn’t because of where I was nor what I wore”, calling out on the damaging attitudes to rape and the objectification of female bodies.

Demonstrations reached a peak last Tuesday when close to 10,000 women gathered outside of the Estado Nacional in Santiago to perform the chant. You can watch the video here.

 

Once again, Chile is making history as it raises its voice (#chiledesperto). Once again, the strength of the female voice is echoing across the globe as thousands of women join in the fight for a society free of judgement, violence, and fear.