Dave Treece

Brazil: Fighting for the Right to be Black

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"We're not Racists: A Response to Those Who Want to Turn Us into a Bi-Coloured Nation." So reads the provocative title of a recent contribution to the debate on race relations in Brazil, by Ali Kamel, executive director of journalism for the Globo media network.

In the last few years an argument has been simmering in the Brazilian media and academic circles about the affirmative action policies being introduced into higher education and the state sectors.

Brazil: Contempt for Poor Leads to Rebellion

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May was a hot month in the Brazilian state of São Paulo. Four days of violence left up to 150 civilians, prison staff, police officers and suspects dead.

Over half of the state's 140 prisons were in revolt, with at least 200 hostages taken, and 80 buses and 17 bank branches burnt out. Some media sources in Brazil dubbed the events "our 9/11". Hysterical that may be, but the panic was certainly enough for the authorities to impose an unofficial curfew on São Paulo, paralysing the transport system, and shutting down schools and businesses.

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