Brazilian educator and psychologist, born Célia Sodré Dória, Sister of the religious order Congregação de Nossa Senhora – Cônegas de Santo Agostinho. Daughter of a lawyer, native of Jaboticabal, São Paulo (1916), Celia grew up surrounded by political discussions and Christian learnings on respect and readiness to assist others. She became a teacher and moved to the city of São Paulo for a higher education (1937 – 1940), earning a Bachelor´s degree in Philosophy and Pedagogy at Faculdade Sedes Sapientiae. She then entered the religious order and began teaching undergraduate students. Having studied Freud on her own, she went abroad for complementary studies in Psychology (1955).
She studied at Sorbonne, did an internship, and travelled. In 1954 she obtained a doctorate in Psychology at Pontifícia Universidade Católica de São Paulo – PUC-SP. By invitation of Universities and other institutions she proffered lectures to students, parents and teachers. Due to her effort and that of others, MEC – Ministério da Educação (Ministry of Education) created a graduation course in Psychology in Brazil. She published several articles and books: Psicopatologia (Psychopathology), Fac.Sedes Sapientiae, SP, 1958, Psicologia científica geral: um estudo analítico do adulto normal (Scientific General Psychology: an analytical study of normal adults), Agir, RJ, 1960, Psicologia Educacional (Educational Psychology), Fac. Ijui, RS, 1961, Educando nossos filhos (Child Bearing), Fac. Sedes Sapientiae, SP, 1968, Psicologia do Ajustamento Neurótico (Psychology of Neurotic Adjustment), Vozes, Petrópolis, 1975.
She fought for freedom, equal rights and social transformation. During the military dictatorship (1964-1985) she desperately fought to save people’s lives and ideals. She was named communist, radical and received life and imprisonment threats. She sheltered persecuted dissidents and intermediated meetings. She founded Instituto Sedes Sapientiae (1977) defined as “an open space for those who desire to study and engage in a project for the transformation of society, striving to attain a world where social justice is the Law”. She died on November 26, 1997.
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