In the past, and now more than ever, women have been and are in the front line when it comes to defending, protecting, and saying what is going wrong in our societies. Women have built nations from scratch in the past and are still doing it today, worldwide. Unfortunately, we often do not find any mention of those women in books, not in school and not in university and that is unfair. We (8 brave and young women from different countries: Bosnia, Colombia, Italy, Paraguay, Mexico and Morocco) decided to change that. And the smartest way is writing about those women, that from one way or the other have started a revolution!
Nowadays, we see revolution in volunteer work, we are starting revolution now writing an article, you are participating in a revolution by reading this blog. From where I come there is a phrase “When tyranny is law, revolution is order” (Don Pedro Albizu Campos). Our new revolution is educating and sharing knowledge!
Author: Giovi Gini
IR student from Paraguay.
Women are revolution – Franca Viola
In the Italian code of criminal procedure of the time (art.544), rape was a crime against “public morality”; and a rehabilitating marriage would repair the honor of a woman victim of rape and the family’s’ honor. The rapist would have his crime automatically extinguished, as if nothing has happened. A crime forgiven by law, an honor repaired by society.
Franca, at 17 years old, was a victim of kidnapping and rape, but instead of “protecting” her honor by marriage with her rapist, she decided to protect her right to justice. Franca and her family pursued a difficult public trial, under the scrutiny and prejudice of the country. In some ways she was lucky, however, because it’s essential to have people that love you and support you through these difficult times.
My father said to me, what do you want to do?
i answered: I don’t want to marry him
He answered: don’t worry, you put one hand, I will put all my hands for you.
And he looked after her until the end. At the end, they/SHE wins the trial.
Franca is an example to follow because with her courage reformed a destructive, but traditional social convention, which implied that a woman without “honor”, in this case a victim of rape, had no value.
Women are not objects to possess, women are people. Today, she is happily married with a lovely man, with three beautiful sons and a granddaughter. She is a living symbol for the emancipation of women. She reminds us that we need to stand up for our rights, no matter what. The behavior of Franca not only set a precedent of breaking a harmful social convention, but took a brave first step towards changing the law completely. The law was abolished in 1981, and in 1996 Italy made rape a crime against the person and not against the moral!
One of the biggest thing that Franca has to teach us is that, it is the person who commits the crime, not the victim, that is dishonorable.
Finally, in one of her last interviews she said:
“everyone is free, until the last second. Everything depends on you, it’s in your hands. You make yourself with your own hands”