The big question behind my academic work is how to combine women’s empowerment after obtaining a higher education degree with happier, more confident individuals. My gaze on the first generation of women university entrants started with my Master’s dissertation ‘Mothers and Daughters: intertwined memories, healing trauma and the rupture with paid domestic work in Brazil’. My aim is to share the findings of my research and reach a wider public in a comprehensible way by highlighting the experiences of those affected through their life stories and, in this way, helping to inspire and promote social transformation.
In my doctoral research I will analyse how the obtention of a higher education degree reshaped the cultural identities of the first generation of university entrants in Brazil during recent governmental programmes to broadening access to higher education in the country. I will focus on women that were benefited by those policies as many were able to break the historical cycle that led their mothers and grandmothers into paid reproductive work, after obtaining a university degree. I will examine their class positions, identity, and subjectivities based on Bourdieusian social theory to explore how the cultural capital inherited from these women’s working-class parents, together with experiences of discrimination, affected their sense of belonging at university and soon afterwards, while entering the labour market. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org