1st Edition

Foundations, US Foreign Policy and Anti-Racism in Brazil Pushing Racial Democracy

    This book connects the work of US private foundations, the US government, and Brazilian intellectuals to explore how they worked collaboratively to address racial disparities in Brazil during the Cold War. It reveals not only how anti-racism was promoted during this period, shaping the political and academic agenda, but also the importance of American foundations, especially the Rockefeller and Ford Foundations, in the process.

    Drawing on a vast array of archival and published sources from Brazil, the United States, and around the world, the book investigates the making of transnational connections and networks that sought to respond to the "race problem", seen as an increasingly dangerous threat to the liberal international order.

    This book is especially relevant to the areas of Race Studies, Social Sciences, Latin-American Studies, Political Science and History, particularly the History of Sociology and Anthropology, as well as to studies about the role of American foundations in the Cold War period. It will also be of interest to activists, social scientists, economists, historians, journalists, NGOs, and INGOs.

    Introduction: Communism, Racism, and the American Dilemma

    Elizabeth Cancelli

    1. The Cold War, the Social Sciences, and the Race Question: Brazil as a Lab

    Elizabeth Cancelli

    2. From Chicago to São Paulo: The Shaping of Florestan Fernandes’ Sociology of Race and Ethnic Relations

    Gustavo Mesquita

    3. US-Brazilian Networks in UNESCO’s Anti-Racism Agenda

    Gustavo Mesquita

    4. US-Latin American Exchange and Florestan Fernandes’ The Negro in Brazilian Society

    Wanderson Chaves

    5. The Ford Foundation, the Marginality Project, and Beyond: The Emergence of Nixon’s Style of Racial Policy

    Wanderson Chaves


    Elizabeth Cancelli, Gustavo Mesquita, and Wanderson Chaves


    Elizabeth Cancelli is a History professor at the University of São Paulo (USP) and a researcher of the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) for more than 20 years

    Gustavo Mesquita obtained his PhD in History at the University of São Paulo in 2017. Currently, Gustavo works as a post-doctoral fellow at the Brazilian Center for Analysis and Planning and visiting fellow at the University of Birmingham, UK.

    Wanderson Chaves obtained his PhD in History at the University of São Paulo in 2012, the Master’s degree in Social Sciences, and the Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology, both at the University of Brasília. Currently, Wanderson is a post-doctoral fellow at the Department of History of the University of São Paulo.