Magazine article New Internationalist

Caterina Martins

Magazine article New Internationalist

Caterina Martins

Article excerpt

Introducing...

Martins emerged as a leading spokesperson of the Portuguese Radical Left Bloc in its breakthrough election performance in October. The antiausterity Bloc got a record 10.2 per cent of the vote (up from 5.2 per cent) with 19 seats (up from 11), becoming the thirdlargest parliamentary party behind the two old warhorses of the Right (Portugal Ahead) and the Left (Socialist Party).

Martins is a 42-year-old blunt-spoken actress and co-founder of the Portobased Useful Visions Theatre Company. Her characteristic jeans and red blouses offset the suits and ties that usually adorn Portuguese politicians. She is among several women leading the Bloc to challenge a political class she calls 'mostly men of the same way of thinking'.

She exhibits canny political sense which helped the Bloc make common cause with former Lisbon mayor and current Socialist leader Antonio Costa to bring down the austerity-addicted Conservative government of Pedro Passos Coelho. …

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