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The Brazil Reader: History, Culture, Politics (The Latin America Readers) Paperback – June 24, 1999


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Editorial Reviews

Review

“A stellar collection of texts on Brazilian history and contemporary life. No ordinary reader, this volume goes below the surface to introduce an American audience to Brazil’s complexities and diversity.” - Foreign Affairs


“Duke University Press has just brought out . . . the closest thing to a voyage around ‘the great green elbow’ that one of its novelists called his rich and varied country. The book shimmers with every type of essay, historiography, and literary tidbit.” - Rain City Review


“Whether ingested in short sips or long draughts, The Brazil Reader has an accumulative weight, breadth, and durability. . . . [I]t’s a book that offers an intelligent and up-to-date survey of a vital and vibrant country. It’s hard to imagine how we were able to get along without it.” - Bondo Wyszpolski, Brazzil


The Brazil Reader is simply indispensable. . . .” - Julio César Pino, Hispanic American Historical Review


The Reader cannot fail to impress. . . . The specialist, the activist, the artist and the anonymous all find a space in The Brazil Reader, creating what the editors describe as a ‘balance of voices.’ In summary, for the well-heeled scholar or the curious undergraduate The Brazil Reader will present possibilities, challenges and thought-provoking reading.” - Jane-Marie Collins, Bulletin of Hispanic Studies


“What gives The Brazil Reader its special cachet is freshness, sensitivity, and empathy in its diversity of perspectives on twentieth-century Brazil, from the top down, from the bottom up, and from somewhere in the middle.”—Stanley J. Stein, Princeton University


“A worthy successor to the pioneering Peru Reader, this volume provides a comprehensive guide to Brazil’s history and culture from the Portuguese colonial past to the postmodern present. Defty crossing disciplines and integrating elite and popular realms, The Brazil Reader is certain to please both the serious student and the general reader.”—Gil Joseph, Yale University


The Brazil Reader is simply indispensable. . . .”
(Julio César Pino, Hispanic American Historical Review)

The Reader cannot fail to impress. . . . The specialist, the activist, the artist and the anonymous all find a space in The Brazil Reader, creating what the editors describe as a ‘balance of voices.’ In summary, for the well-heeled scholar or the curious undergraduate The Brazil Reader will present possibilities, challenges and thought-provoking reading.”
(Jane-Marie Collins, Bulletin of Hispanic Studies)

“A stellar collection of texts on Brazilian history and contemporary life. No ordinary reader, this volume goes below the surface to introduce an American audience to Brazil’s complexities and diversity.”
(Foreign Affairs)

“Duke University Press has just brought out . . . the closest thing to a voyage around ‘the great green elbow’ that one of its novelists called his rich and varied country. The book shimmers with every type of essay, historiography, and literary tidbit.”
(Rain City Review)

“Whether ingested in short sips or long draughts, The Brazil Reader has an accumulative weight, breadth, and durability. . . . [I]t’s a book that offers an intelligent and up-to-date survey of a vital and vibrant country. It’s hard to imagine how we were able to get along without it.”
(Bondo Wyszpolski, Brazzil)

About the Author

Robert M. Levine is Professor of History and Director of Latin American Studies at the University of Miami. He has published extensively on Brazil and is former chair of the Columbia University Seminar on Brazil. His previous books include The Brazilian Photographs of Genevieve Naylor, 1940–1942, and Images of History, both also published by Duke University Press.

John J. Crocitti is Assistant Professor of History at San Diego Mesa College.

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Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Series: The Latin America Readers
  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Duke University Press; 3rd Printing, 2002 edition (June 24, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0822322900
  • ISBN-13: 978-0822322900
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 6.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #68,923 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 53 people found the following review helpful By J. Wright on May 10, 2000
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a collection of short essays on Brazil. I found at least half to be quite interesting, though I probably skimmed about a quarter of them. Many of the essays frequently give a first hand account of life as a small farmer, favela resident or fisherman in Brazil. These essays capture and explain to the English reader the hopes, values and experiences of actual Brazilians. Most English readers gain their understanding of Brazil only second hand through academics or journalists. This book offers a fresh, reality based perspective on Brazil for English readers who haven't learned about Brazil outside of academia, the New York Times, or the beaches of Rio.
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37 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Joao on July 4, 2000
Format: Paperback
I brought this book in Los Angeles on the way back from a trip to Disney with my children. I finished it almost when I arrived home. The book has great insight and should be read by Brazilians, because it presents things as they are, not as they are supposed to be. Maybe the book will be públished in Brazil some day. I hope so.
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29 of 33 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 4, 1999
Format: Paperback
This is a great book for learning about Brazil from the earliest days to today. The selections are unusually interesting and varied. As a Brazilian, this book brings me "saudades."
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 7, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book is a page-turner. As a Brazilian living in the States, it brings back strong memories. A very nice gift.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A. Howe on October 21, 2002
Format: Paperback
From exerpts of historical claims to letters from diplomats, from essays on slavery to descriptions of food, this book gives insights on the spirit and history of Brazil in easy to read snippets. A picture of a people emerges from original sources and non-academic evaluations that adds debth to what you will see when you go there.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 6, 1999
Format: Paperback
So often, anthologies collect obvious articles and essays about their subject. This reader goes far beyond, covering subjects ranging from music to history to secuality to corruption. This is a terrific book!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By R. Groen on March 4, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read a dozen essays from the book before our 3-week stay in Brazil and continue to read much more after our return. "Reader" captures a variety of perspectives on the country from the music/arts theme to political history and racism. Published in 1999, it does not include current events. No matter. One of the best essays is "The Vargas Era" which summarizes a period of political status quo even though Vargas made attempts to change his country before his suicide.

This is not a travel guide, not a take-with (it's heavy, 500+ pages), so it's best read at home to prepare for the lively experience of meeting Brazilians and appreciating their culture(s) and history. Some knowledge of the colonial influence in the country's formation goes a long way to help travelers understand current conditions. Slavery was abolished in 1888, and the state of Minas Gerais formulated laws that regulated beggars in 1900. Coincidence?

Travelers to the beaches may not need to delve into the culture, but those who want a fuller experience of Brazil will enjoy this book.
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