New bookstore in São Paulo only sells books by female authors

On Saturday, a new independent bookstore opened on São Paulo's Rua Amaral Gurgel. It's the first in Brazil to only stock works by women. 

As Gato Sem Rabo's founder Johanna Stein explains on UOL,  the store is an extension of her own search for female voices: "I was looking for texts by writers and thinkers that I could consider my peers. This search started from the interest of understanding the world from the perspective of other women, especially those in the global south, like me."

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Regina Dalcastagnè, professor at the University of Brasília, found that over 70% of books printed in Brazil between 2005 and 2014 were written by men. In other parts of the world, gatekeepers like book reviewers and prestigious literary prizes still skew male or are biased towards male voices. In Australia, book reviews reached gender parity for the first time in 2018.

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While a bookstore that leaves out male writers might seem like a throwback to the 20th century or something out of Portlandia, female authors still struggle for equal billing. So there's value to be had — and businesses to be built — in dedicated spaces that celebrate women's voices across a wide range of viewpoints and genres, including children's books. Alongside Gato Sem Rabo, check out The Second Shelf in London, and Penguin's 2018 pop-up store

Spotted by: Priscilla Brossi Gutierre

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Image — an initial architect's rendering — by fernandazotovici for vapor arquitetura

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