Flora Tristán: precursora del feminismo y de la emancipación proletaria

“La experiencia y los hechos os dicen suficientemente que el gobierno no puede o no quiere ocuparse de vuestra suerte cuando se trata de mejorarla. Sólo de vosotros depende salir, si lo queréis firmemente, del dédalo de miserias, dolores y sumisión en el que languidecéis”

Flora Tristán, 1843

Flora Célestine Thérèse Henriette Tristán y Moscoso Lesnais (1803-1844) fue una escritora francesa de ascendencia peruana. Poco conocida dentro de la historiografía oficial, probablemente olvidada de manera intencional debido a la rebeldía y ansias de libertad que emanaban de sus escritos. Entre sus obras destacan; Peregrinaciones de una paria (1839), Paseos en Londres (1840) y el folleto La unión obrera (1843).

Luego de la muerte repentina de su padre, un coronel peruano exiliado, quedó junto a su madre en la más absoluta miseria, sumergiéndose en la vida cotidiana del pueblo trabajador. Esta experiencia la llevó con posterioridad a asumir un profundo compromiso con aquellas personas a quienes el progreso social prometido por la modernidad capitalista había dejado abandonados a su propia suerte.

En su época si bien ya existía cierta tradición teórica que reclamaba la igualdad de la mujer, gracias a la Filosofía de la Ilustración y los movimientos que tuvieron lugar durante la Revolución Francesa, aún no existía una sistematización exhaustiva de las reflexiones que darían posteriormente origen al pensamiento feminista como doctrina. Sin embargo, durante la primera mitad del siglo XIX, ya se había generado el reclamo por la igualdad de la mujer y comenzaba a descalificarse con mayor fuerza el discurso patriarcal, contribuyendo de esta manera a la edificación de la teoría feminista, la cual aún se encontraba en un estado embrionario de conformación y con sus márgenes todavía bastante difusos y poco delimitados. Tristán fue una pionera que se insertó dentro de esta tendencia, rechazando con vehemencia el falso principio que afirma la inferioridad de la naturaleza femenina, cuestionando la institución del matrimonio y la falta de derechos civiles, educativos y económicos de las mujeres.

La búsqueda de puentes entre la preocupación por la superación de la desigualdad social y lo referente a la situación de opresión que viven las mujeres bajo el patriarcado, fueron una constante en la obra y vida de Flora Tristán. Ella es la primera mujer que intenta fusionar en una síntesis critica el discurso proto-feminista y social, abriendo el camino que llevaría a la futura conformación de un feminismo de carácter proletario o clasista, que considera inconcebible que existan mujeres oprimidas que sean capaces de oprimir a otras mujeres.

Durante el período en que se circunscribe la obra de Tristán, se producen cambios radicales en el continente europeo, debido a la implementación del modo de producción capitalista, la consecuente modernización e industrialización de la sociedad y a la difusión del ideario igualitario-democrático impulsado por la Ilustración y la Revolución Francesa. Sin embargo, las expectativas de bienestar que se generaron en un principio chocaron frontalmente con la realidad. El inminente progreso material que llegaría a todas y todos, y el fin de la escasez y la miseria propugnado por el discurso moderno se desvanecieron en el aire y, por el contrario, se generó aún mayor desigualdad y explotación para grandes masas de seres humanos. Las mujeres seguían excluidas de los derechos más elementales y el proletariado, cada vez más numeroso, quedaba totalmente al margen de la riqueza producida en fábricas y talleres.

Frente a este panorama diversos reformadores sociales comenzaron a crear sistemas sociales ideales para poder corregir los males de esta sociedad; Cabet, Owen, Saint Simon y Fourier, fueron algunos de los primeros teóricos en autodenominarse “socialistas”. Marx les agregaría posteriormente el adjetivo de “utópicos”, debido a la confianza casi ciega que poseían en el poder regenerador de la educación, su pacifismo a ultranza, y en la ingenua confianza de redención de la clase burguesa.

Flora, hija de su tiempo, fue fuertemente influenciada por esta corriente de pensamiento social. Pero a pesar de ello, pudo dar un paso más allá; fue la primera en afirmar que el proletariado debía unificarse como clase y liberarse así mismo, es decir, confiando en sus propias fuerzas. Idea que recogerá posteriormente Marx en la celebre consigna de la I Internacional “la emancipación de los trabajadores será obra de los trabajadores mismos”, y que será reivindicada por el movimiento anarquista internacional hasta el presente.

Sin duda, Flora Tristán fue un eslabón fundamental en la lucha moderna contra la dominación patriarcal y el capitalismo. Por eso la recordamos. Su pensamiento fue clave para el nacimiento del movimiento feminista de tintes revolucionarios que emergió de manera organizada y con fuerza entre fines del siglo XIX y principios del siglo XX. Hoy, en pleno siglo XXI las mujeres aún luchan por su autonomía y derechos reproductivos, y junto a otros actores sociales, continúan en la gigantesca tarea de edificar al calor de lucha la nueva sociedad.

Por Nahuel Valenzuela

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