unacknowlwdged troughout centuries of successive migratory movements
largely dominated by male stereotypes.
Neverthless emigration had in fact profound effects in the life of
women in the family circle, in society and in the labour market, and
on the other hand, women did strongly contribute to transform both
individual immigration projects and the portuguese communities in
Ttraditional portuguese policies opposed and limited feminine
emigration as women were expected to suffer "double discrimination"
abroad (as foreigners and as women) but recent studies and hearings
of women speaking for themselves reveal that in many cases, for a
majority of them, emigration signyfied more rights and more
opportunities. In more prousperous, modern and egalitarian societies
they became aware of individual rghts and of social causes and learned
new ways of being wives, mothers and professional workers They were a
decisive positive factor in the integration of the whole family and
often an obstacle to the option of going back to the country of
Inside their ethnic group, they played an important role in the
setting up of cultural organisations guarding traditions and ways of
being and living collectively, seats of community life due to their
presence and contributions. But such organisations are still mostly
led by men, women reacting in some cases by creating their separate
associations . The situation is changing gradually, but that
"portuguese universe" abroad is still less egalitarian than the host
society as a whole.