Reversal of the gender gap in Brazilian education in the 20th century

Kaizô Iwakami Beltrão José Eustáquio Diniz Alves About the authors

The reduction of the gender gap and the improvement in female access to education were explicit objectives of the IV Conference on Women (1995), of the World Education Forum (2000) and of the Millennium Summit (2000). All International Conferences promoted by the United Nations Organization (UN) recommend actions to eradicate discrimination against women in all fields of activity, especially education. The gender gap and the education deficit among women have always been part of the Brazilian reality. However, women have been able to eliminate and reverse this gap throughout the 20th century. The main purpose of this article is to analyze when the reversion of the gender gap in Brazilian education occurred. In order to do so, we will present information obtained from demographic censuses from 1960 to 2000, based on schooling levels disaggregated by gender and birth cohorts. This methodology will allow us to track the evolution of the gender gap in birth cohorts after 1890 until 1995.


Fundação Carlos Chagas Av. Prof. Francisco Morato, 1565, 05513-900 São Paulo SP Brasil, Tel.: +55 11 3723-3000, Fax: +55 11 3721-1059 - São Paulo - SP - Brazil