Colonial Influences Which Shaped Brazil's Contemporary Society Essay

Colonial Influences Which Shaped Brazil's Contemporary Society Essay

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This paper analyzes aspects of Brazil’s colonial history that has influenced contemporary societies. It also describes and critiques measures that have recently been implemented by the Brazilian government in attempt to curb the further deterioration of society.
In Brazil’s society, neoliberal and capitalist beliefs within the social structure have hindered democratic politics. Diverse social groups are unable to come together and exert their political power as a united front, instead, the neoliberal belief of market power replacing citizenship power stratified the population based on capital. What all people of Brazil have in common is their citizenship and under the constitution, each citizen is entitled to equal access in the political realm. Brazil attempts to achieve this by requiring everyone to cast an opinion in the form of a vote. “Citizenship has provided common ground and an articulatory principle for an immense diversity of social movements that have adopted the language of right as a way of expressing their demands” and because of this, citizenship is a “crucial weapon not only in the struggle against social and economic exclusion and disparity but also in the broadening of dominant conceptions of politics.”[1] This paper will argue that the economic and social inequalities faced by many inferior populations in Brazil are an effect of the neoliberal concept of citizenship. By the neoliberal concept of citizenship it is meant that citizenship began to be understood and promoted as a mere individual incorporation to the market and this is why “in a context where the state progressively withdraws from its role as the guarantee of rights, the market is offered as a surrogate instance of citizenship.”[2] “One of their [...

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6. Jarvis, Helen, Paula Kantor, and Jonathan Cloke. Cities and gender. London: Routledge, 2009. Print.
7. Lantz, PM (06/03/1998). "Socioeconomic factors, health behaviors, and mortality: results from a nationally representative prospective study of U.S. adults". JAMA : the journal of the American Medical Association(0098-7484), 279(21), p.1,703.
8. Leslie Lipson Government in Contemporary Brazil The Canadian Journal of Economics and Political Science / Revue canadienne d'Economique et de Science politique , Vol. 22, No. 2 (May, 1956), pp. 183-198
9. Sarah Radcliffe and Sallie Westwood, Remaking the Nation: Place, Identity and Politics in Latin America. P.33 (1996)

[1]Dagnino 2007:2473
[2]Dagnino 2007:2478
[3] Freire, 1997:86
[4] Franklin 47
[5] Lipson 1956:191
[6] Radcliffe, Westwood 33

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