Having experienced a period of crisis, the young scholars included in this anthology provide evidence that critical periods can be favorable to the flourishing of the social sciences and that crises in society and the polity may provide new incentives for the profession. The authors have used the most critical period of Brazil's change from a liberal to an authoritarian government to further their training in Europe and the United States, returning to their country to shed new light on past and current events. They have adapted their training to a non-liberal environment and combined local research with a universalistic orientation in their analyses of Brazilian social structure.
This book investigates the roles of the peasantry in Brazilian society, past and present. It describes the pact established between traditional rural elites and the central government, which favored the previous populistic style of urban politics but left unaltered the rural social structure. In addition to analyzing the political trade-offs between the traditional elite and the central government, the authors focus on the class structure within which peasant leagues emerged. The country's political development is analyzed through a bi-polar political structure wherein populist and authoritarian regimes alternate in power.
Other aspects of the military government's impact are discussed through the use of public policy models aimed at analyzing the output of both liberal and authoritarian regimes. Continuity between the current administration and previous authoritarian governments is shown as well as new developments, such as changes in municipal taxation, which allow for the emergence of new technical elites. The increase in authoritarian legislation is discussed within this analytical framework, as is the expansion of entrepreneurial activities.
This book brings together the analytical result of recent research by a distinguished group of young Brazilian social scientists. It is … the first book written in English about Brazil by Brazilians and, as such, represents an extremely important contribution to the literature … An up-to-date selected bibliography on* social science research in Brazil from 1960-77 is an essential reference point for all future undertakings. Shepard Forman, Department of Anthropology, University of Michigan.