Cover image for A concise history of Brazil
A concise history of Brazil
Fausto, Boris, 1930-
Personal Author:
Uniform Title:
História concisa do Brasil. English
Publication Information:
Cambridge, U.K. ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 1999.
Physical Description:
xi, 362 pages : illustrations, maps ; 22 cm
Geographic Term:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
F2521 .F33213 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
F2521 .F33213 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
F2521 .F33213 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating
F2521 .F33213 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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A Concise History of Brazil covers almost 500 years of Brazilian history, from the arrival of the Portuguese in the New World to the political events that defined the transition in recent years from an authoritarian to a democratic political regime. Brazilian territorial unity and national identity were forged throughout the nineteenth century, after the proclamation of independence in 1822, resulting in a nation with one common language and wide ethnic and racial variety. Remarkable in this respect, the country nevertheless faces problems of social and ethnic disparity as well as of preservation and adequate use of its natural resources. This book emphasizes topics that have deeply influenced the historical formation of Brazil and affected its existence to the present day, such as the destruction of Indian civilizations, slavery and massive immigration throughout the last decades of the nineteenth century and the first decades of the twentieth century.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

The history of Brazil somewhat mirrors that of the U.S.: a long period of colonization and Indian wars, the importation and eventual freeing of slaves, a huge population spurt of immigrants in the late nineteenth century, and an ongoing battle between conservationists and expanding business interests during the twentieth century. Despite its Portuguese influence, Brazil may be one of the most culturally diverse countries outside the U.S. Brakel's translation of Fausto's original Portuguese text tends toward occasional dryness, but then there are terrific moments of great clarity, in particular the descriptions of just how a coffee plantation is built and operated. The periods and personalities of Brazilian history are epitomized in the two emperors, Dom Pedro I and Dom Pedro II, and the country-unifying president, Getulio Vargas, in the 1930s and 1940s. Fausto concentrates mostly on these political developments, however, leaving little room to discuss the cultural contribution made in Rio de Janeiro and elsewhere; nevertheless, this probing view of 500 years in one of South America's richest and most populous countries hits the highlights. --Joe Collins

Publisher's Weekly Review

It's no mean feat to tell the unruly story of a country as large, diverse and divided as Brazil in one volume of narrative history. But Fausto succeeds admirably in presenting facts, figures, events and influences in an orderly, palatable fashion. Expansion led the Portuguese to Brazil in 1500, when Pedro Alvares Cabral first sighted the country's coast. From the beginning, Brazil was totally dependent on slavery, first enslaving Indians and then importing Africans to work one or another of the labor-intensive aspects of the boom-or-bust economy. In 1888, slavery was reluctantly abolished under heavy pressure from Britain, which was then playing a major role in attempting to help Brazil recover from its latest financial disaster. Although people of color outnumbered whites for hundreds of years, there were no slave uprisings or effective abolitionist movements to force the issue. Brazil's independence from Portugal happened in much the same haphazard way as the country's slip into dictatorship. Sao Paulo University professor Fausto has written a nuts-and-bolts account that will serve general readers as a navigable port of entry into the history and life of one of the world's most culturally rich nations. Photos not seen by PW. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

A professor of political science at the University of Sao Paulo, Fausto is one of the most articulate, well-known historians of 20th-century Brazil; his numerous historical publications form an important part of the country's historiography. He recently published a college-level textbook in Portuguese on Brazilian history, and though there are differences, many sections of this English-language volume are similar to or direct translations from that book. The volume is in narrative style with a focus on traditional history, and it is valuable for introducing theoretical ideas not found in similar textbooks by non-Brazilians. Fausto's style, while somewhat simplistic, is refreshing. It has been many years since a Brazilian scholar published a textbook history of Brazil in English, and this long-overdue book will be of interest to both academic and public libraries.‘Mark L. Grover, Brigham Young Univ. Lib., Provo, UT (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

List of illustrations
1 Colonial Brazil (1500û1822)
2 Imperial Brazil (1822û1889)
3 The first Republic (1889û1930)
4 The Vargas state (1930û1945)
5 The democratic experiment (1945û1964)
6 The military government and the transition to democracy (1964û1984)