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Largest Ethnic Groups In Brazil
Brazil is the fifth largest country in the world both by area and population and it is also the largest country in both South America and Latin America. The country is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean and borders all other South American Countries except Ecuador and Chile. Brazil has an approximate population of over 200 million people with 84% of the population living in the urban areas. The population is primarily in the Southeastern and Northeastern parts of the country. The population of the country is made up of several ethnic groups. The largest ethnic groups in Brazil include
The nationalist groundswell in Brazil
BEING a nation of immigrants, Brazilians are not naturally xenophobic. Their nationalism has traditionally been of an understated kind, rooted in economic issues and encapsulated in a widely held view that Brazil's size and potential mean not only that it need take little notice of foreigners, but that it can compete on equal terms. That it so often fails to do so breeds insecurity.
Economic nationalism was one reason why Brazil was so slow to abandon protectionism and open up to trade and investment. Yet liberalisation, which began only a decade ago, has gathered pace under President Fernando Henrique Cardoso. Multinationals have rushed to pour money into Brazil. Foreign direct investment in the country (in factories and firms, rather than financial markets) has amounted to some $30 billion in each of the past two years (see chart) already this year, another $3 billion came in January alone.
Much of this cash is to build new plants or revamp existing ones. But much is also to buy the household names of Brazilian business, either private firms or those being privatised. To take just two examples this month, a Spanish group bought an electricity company from the north-eastern state of Pernambuco for $1 billion, and Bestfoods of the United States paid $490m for Arisco, a food manufacturer.
Foreign investment is not only plugging Brazil's current-account deficit, but helping to make industry and services more competitive. Yet some Brazilians now worry that their country is losing control of its destiny. Senior members of the air force have grumbled about the sale of a 20% stake in Embraer, Brazil's aircraft maker, to a French consortium. Others fear that foreign predators are about to pounce on CVRD , a mining and transport giant, which like Embraer is a privatised company long seen by some Brazilians as a “strategic” national asset.
There are grumbles, too, within Mr Cardoso's centre-right coalition over his decision that foreigners can bid for Banespa, a big state-owned bank in Sao Paulo which is to be privatised in May, if the government has its way. A poll this month by Folha, a Sao Paulo newspaper, showed that 71% of those asked oppose letting foreigners buy Banespa 58% think it does more harm than good to let foreign companies buy local ones.
Though as a sociologist Mr Cardoso once expounded an anti-imperialist “dependency theory” about developing countries, he has for years been arguing that Brazil has much more to gain than to lose by opening its economy. This week he again seemed to throw his weight against the economic nationalists. On February 23rd, he sacked the president of the National Development Bank ( BNDES ), Andrei Calabi, who had been working with a group of protectionist-minded Sao Paulo industrialists to try to set up a government-sponsored petrochemicals giant. Mr Calabi's replacement, Francisco Gros, is friendlier to foreign investment: his latest employers were Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, an American investment bank.
Some of the nationalist disquiet has been stoked by two years of economic stagnation, before and after last year's traumatic currency devaluation, and will dissipate as the economy recovers. Brazilian national pride has long taken particular exception to the IMF , with which the government has a tough three-year loan agreement. That made remarks this month by Lorenzo Perez, the IMF 's man in Brasilia, especially clumsy: he criticised an “anti-poverty fund” proposed by Antonio Carlos Magalhaes, the powerful Senate president, even though Mr Cardoso's orthodox economic team had laboured hard to turn this scheme from an oversized slush fund into something closer to an instrument of social policy.
Some of the wounded pride also amounts to ill-disguised expressions of self-interest. Many congressmen who support a proposal to ban foreigners from buying banks received generous campaign donations from Brazilian rivals, who want Banespa “for the price of a banana”, as an aide to Mr Cardoso puts it. Others, on the far left and far right, are nostalgic for the old ways: favouring Brazilian firms by shutting out foreign competition and offering generous state aid.
But some critics express more reasoned doubts. Jose Genoino, of the left-wing Workers' Party, argues that Mr Cardoso has let foreigners invest and sell in Brazil's market while getting little access to theirs in return. However, Mr Cardoso has argued that free trade and liberalised investment bring their own rewards, even if they are not fully reciprocated.
Another doubt concerns the rising outflow of profits and dividend remittances, which last year amounted to $4.1 billion (net of inflows). But if the proceeds of selling state assets to foreigners are used to retire expensive foreign debt, as they generally are, then the effect on the balance of payments may be positive. In addition, as part of a multinational, some of the firms sold will export more other foreign investments, such as those in telecoms, will help the trade balance by aiding their customers' competitiveness.
A more justified criticism is that in several privatisations the BNDES has given cheap loans to foreign buyers. Edward Amadeo, a senior finance-ministry official, defends this by saying that sometimes there are no plausible Brazilian bidders and credit has to be offered to entice foreign ones.
Lastly, some critics complain that nothing is being done to encourage the emergence of Brazilian multinationals, capable of investing abroad themselves, and that it will soon be too late to do so. This argument was behind Mr Calabi's plans for a petrochemicals merger. It is also being used by Antarctica and Brahma, two drinks companies, to justify a merger that would give them 72% of Brazil's beer market and, they claim, the clout to compete internationally. They blame objections to the deal on Coca-Cola, whose bottlers own Brazil's fourth beer brand, and which itself has almost half Brazil's soft-drinks market.
Yet Brazil has a long, costly, and not especially successful history of trying to breed “national champions”. Rather than bleating for special favours, Brazilian businesses and their political backers might be better advised to redouble their efforts to achieve tax, budgetary and financial reforms, which would drive down the costs of credit and of doing business in Brazil.
This article appeared in the The Americas section of the print edition under the headline "The nationalist groundswell in Brazil"
The Confederacy Made Its Last Stand in Brazil
By the time the Civil War ended in 1865, much of the South lay in ruins, physically, economically and socially. Fears of Yankee reprisals and racial conflict percolated through society. Enslaved people had been freed Confederate President Jefferson Davis was imprisoned. For William H. Norris, a former Alabama state senator and staunch Confederate, it was all too much to bear.
Rather than rejoin the United States, he and a son traveled to southeastern Brazil in late 1865 and purchased about 500 acres of rolling hills and reddish soil that reminded them of Alabama. They then bought three enslaved workers, planted cotton, sent for the rest of the family and proceeded to live as if the Confederacy hadn’t just collapsed.
The Norris family was not alone in their desire to avoid Yankee rule. In the decade after the Civil War, roughly 10,000 Southerners left the United States, with the majority going to Brazil, where slavery was still legal. (Others went to such places as Cuba, Mexico, Venezuela, Honduras, Canada and Egypt.) Though hardships prompted most to come right back, descendants of these so-called Confederados maintain a presence in Brazil even today.
The house of the Norris family, the first American confederate family in Brazil. (Credit: Public Domain)
Amid the post-Civil War chaos, several countries tried to entice Southerners, largely for political and agricultural reasons. In Mexico, for example, Emperor Maximilian I (soon to be executed before a firing squad) awarded land and tax breaks and hired Confederate oceanographer Matthew Fontaine Maury to be his “imperial commissioner of immigration.” In Venezuela, the authorities also provided land and tax breaks. And in Egypt, an Ottoman viceroy brought over ex-Confederate and ex-Union officers to help invade Ethiopia.
The best incentives, however, came from Brazilian Emperor Dom Pedro II, a Confederate ally who had sheltered and supplied Southern ships during the Civil War. He offered land to the Confederados for as little as 22 cents an acre, subsidized their transport to Brazil, provided temporary lodging upon arrival, promised them quick citizenship and, at times, even personally greeted them as they disembarked.
Much of the Southern media opposed the exodus, as did Robert E. Lee, who believed all efforts should go toward rebuilding the South. But Dom Pedro counterattacked by taking out advertisements in U.S. newspapers. Meanwhile, certain pro-colonization Southerners produced glowing reports that portrayed Brazil as a tropical paradise. “Of course, when they got there, it was nothing like what they thought it would be,” says Cyrus B. “Sonny” Dawsey, a professor emeritus at Auburn University who co-authored and edited the book, The Confederados: Old South Immigrants in Brazil.
Dom Pedro seemingly had two main motives for luring in Confederados, the first of which was agricultural. “He saw these people as bringing new technologies and new abilities in farming to Brazil, which in fact they did,” Dawsey says, pointing out that they introduced watermelons and pecans into their new country, along with state-of-the-art plows.
Emperor Dom Pedro II of Brazil, reigning for over 58 years from 1831-1889. (Credit: Universal History Archive/Getty Images)
Furthermore, “it was public policy in Brazil to whiten society by bringing in Europeans and European-descended Americans,” says Luciana da Cruz Brito, a history professor at the Federal University of Recôncavo da Bahia, who studies slavery and abolition.
At the time, slavery remained legal in Brazil, which over the course of its history imported more than 10 times as many enslaved people as the United States. In fact, it did not ban the practice until 1888, becoming the last country in the Western Hemisphere to do so. “In 1865, Brazil barely even had an abolitionist movement,” Brito says.
Her research shows that some Southern immigrants to Brazil took enslaved Africa Americans with them in disregard of U.S. and Brazilian law. Others bought new enslaved people upon arrival, such as former Alabama state representative Charles G. Gunter, whose family’s letters tell of his acquisition of 38 enslaved workers in Brazil. The letters also mention another Confederado, who acquired a sugar plantation with 130 enslaved workers.
Descendants of the original Confederados tend to play down their ancestors’ ties to slavery. Yet, according to Brito, the Confederados were largely attracted to Brazil both because they wanted to own enslaved people and because they believed the institution of slavery would maintain strict racial hierarchies. sed on the documentation that I read,” Brito says, “I have no doubt that they came to Brazil because of slavery.”
A slave auction in Brazil. (Credit: Biblioteca Ambrosiana/Getty Images)
Still, these American expatriates never came close to replicating the large slaveholding estates of the Deep South. “The folks that moved to Brazil were not the wealthy plantation owners,” Dawsey says. “They were middle-income farmers, some were doctors, some were schoolteachers, some were machinists.” He adds that many longed to families that had traditionally been pioneers on the frontier,” and that in his view they weren’t 𠇍iehard slaveholders.”
Whatever their reasons for immigrating, the Confederados struggled to adapt to their new homes. In many of the Brazilian settlements, the climate and soil were ill-suited to the types of crops they wanted to grow, such as cotton. Disease, insect infestations and internal power struggles likewise took a toll, as did a lack of transportation infrastructure that made it difficult for them to get their crops to market. Political support also dried up, as Dom Pedro became distracted by an economic downturn, his country’s participation in the gruesome War of the Triple Alliance and his own worsening health.
At the same time, language and religious barriers—the overwhelmingly Protestant Confederados weren’t even allowed to bury their dead in the local Catholic cemeteries𠅌ontributed to a sense of isolation. Dawsey says, “You read the letters, and they were just homesick, not just for their family members, but also for the way of life, things like church and food.”
What’s more, Brazil’s racial norms proved perplexing, particularly the more relaxed attitudes toward interracial marriage, the integrated army and police force, and the social mobility permitted to free blacks. Plus, as Brito points out, 𠇊 lot of the people who were considered white in Brazil were considered mulatto by the Confederates.”
Photos Reveal Harsh Detail Of Brazil's History With Slavery
Slaves at a coffee yard in a farm. Vale do Paraiba, Sao Paulo, 1882.
Marc Ferrez/Moreira Salles Institute Archive
Brazil was the last place in the Americas to abolish slavery — it didn't happen until 1888 — and that meant that the final years of the practice were photographed.
This has given Brazil what may be the world's largest archive of photography of slavery, and a new exhibition in Sao Paulo is offering some new insights into the country's brutal past.
One image at the exhibition, for example, has been blown up to the size of a wall. "Things that you could never see, suddenly you see," says anthropologist Lilia Schwarcz, one of the curators of the new exhibition called Emancipation Inclusion and Exclusion.
A Photo History Of Slavery In Brazil
In its original size and composition, the image from photographer Marc Ferrez, one of the most impressive photographers from 19th century Brazil, shows a wide shot of a group of slaves drying coffee in a field. Their faces are indistinct but the overall impression is one of order and calm. But once the picture is blown up, the expressions become distinct and details emerge. A female slave is breastfeeding a child in the field clothes that look neat are seen to be tattered.
"Expanding the photos, we can see a lot of things we couldn't see and the state didn't want to see," Schwarcz says. "We do not want to show slaves only like victims."
Brazil's History With Slavery
Slavery in Brazil lasted for 300 years, and it imported some 4 million Africans to the country. These images were taken during the waning days of slavery and Brazil's monarchy. Many were commissioned by the state in an attempt to show slavery in a better light.
Black woman with white child on her back. Bahia, 1860. Moreira Salles Institute Archive hide caption
Black woman with white child on her back. Bahia, 1860.
Moreira Salles Institute Archive
Sergio Burgi with the Moreira Salles Institute, which donated the photographs to the show, says blowing up the images shows the underlying brutality of the system. In another image, slaves are lined up waiting to be taken into the field. All are barefoot. In between them, once the image is enlarged, we can see many young children.
"Its incredible what you see," Burgi says. "The amount of children who very early go out . how would they manage to take care of these children out in the fields?"
Lilia Schwarcz says the slave system was based on violence, and the photos, when when viewed closely, show just how violent that system could be. Whats astounding about the exhibition is the variety of situations that slaves were photographed in: not only in the fields but in their owners' homes, in the city and taking care of the white children of their masters.
One of the most striking images is of a white woman sitting in a litter. The two slaves that would carry her through the streets of the city are standing next to her. One looks down, in deference. The other man is leaning against the litter, his hat tipped at a jaunty angle, staring straight at the camera.
"He's showing himself, and saying 'I'm not just like this, I'm another thing. I'm something different. I'm something else," Schwarcz says.
A detail from a photo of slaves going to the coffee harvest with oxcar. Vale do Paraiba, Sao Paulo, 1885. Moreira Salles Institute Archive hide caption
A detail from a photo of slaves going to the coffee harvest with oxcar. Vale do Paraiba, Sao Paulo, 1885.
Moreira Salles Institute Archive
Opening New Discussions
The images in the exhibition were taken from 1860 to 1885. Slavery ended in Brazil in 1888, and the photos also reveal a tricky and difficult moment for slave owners in Brazil, says Maria Helena Machado, a historian who also contributed to the exhibition.
"It was almost the end of the slave system in Brazil, but those owners . they wanted very much to keep the slave system," Machado says.
Machado says the late 19th century was even more brutal than before because, with slavery about to end, owners wanted to get as much as they could in terms of slave work. "They are not concerned anymore about surviving, so who cares? 'I need to get my money back,'" she says.
A lady with two slaves, in Bahia, Brazil, 1860. Moreira Salles Institute Archive hide caption
A lady with two slaves, in Bahia, Brazil, 1860.
Moreira Salles Institute Archive
Machado says many slaves were running away, while others had formed armed bands and were revolting. The enlarged images show the look in the eyes of the slaves. The battle, says Lilia Schwarcz, is very evident.
"They were fighting for their freedom," she says. "So you have here a discussion about freedom."
A discussion that curator Sergio Burgi says continues today, with the people who have come to see the exhibition. "People here in Brazil have reacted in very interesting ways saying 'Oh that reminds me of my time as a kid, and I used to live in a rural area and everything looked similar,'" he says.
Burgi says even decades after slavery, blacks lived in the same conditions, and that legacy continues to resonate today.
The exhibition runs through the end of December at the University of Sao Paulo.
Slavery in Brazil
On May 13, 1888, Brazilian Princess Isabel of Bragança signed Imperial Law number 3,353. Although it contained just 18 words, it is one of the most important pieces of legislation in Brazilian history. Called the “Golden Law,” it abolished slavery in all its forms.
For 350 years, slavery was the heart of the Brazilian economy. According to historian Emilia Viotti da Costa, 40 percent of the 10 million enslaved African brought to the New World ended up in Brazil. Enslaved persons were so pivotal to the economy that Ina von Binzer, a German educator who lived in Brazil in the late 1800s, wrote: “In this country, the Blacks occupy the main role. They are responsible for all the labor and produce all the wealth in this land. The white Brazilian just doesn’t work.”
By 1888, abolition had the support of most Brazilians—including several conservative sectors—the culmination of a long process of societal and economic changes. By the time slavery was abolished, the practice had already begun to decrease due to the modernization of agriculture and increasing migration towards Brazil’s cities from rural areas.
Yet the shift took nearly 70 years. Great Britain outlawed slavery in 1807, and subsequently began to pressure other nations to follow suit—including Brazil upon its independence from Portugal. However, in 1822, 1.5 million of 3.5 million people in Brazil were enslaved and the practice was not simply tolerated, but strongly supported by all segments of society, including the Catholic Church.
Yet in the years that followed, Great Britain ramped up efforts to outlaw the slave trade, seizing slave ships in the Atlantic Ocean, and even attacking a few ports in Brazil. As a result, the Brazilian government passed a law declaring that all enslaved persons were free upon reaching Brazilian soil, though the government did not enforce the law.
As British ships made life harder for slave traders, the supply of slave labor declined and enslaved persons became more expensive. Initially this forced owners to improve living and working conditions, as they could no longer afford the high mortality rates that previously characterized the practice of slavery in Brazil.
Landowners became increasingly aware that slave labor was making less and less economic sense. Paying low salaries to free men was in fact cheaper than maintaining slaves, for whom the owners were responsible. Thus, the Brazilian government began implementing policies aimed at gradually reducing slavery, although it moved slowly to avoid disturbing owners’ economic interests.
The Gradual Abolition
In 1871, the Brazilian Parliament passed the so-called “Free Womb Law,” declaring that all children born to enslaved women would be free. However, children had to work for their parents’ owners until they were adults in order to “compensate” the owners. At the time, many notaries–with the knowledge of local parishes–forged birth certificates to prove that child slaves were born before the law had been passed. According to Joaquim Nabuco, a lawyer and abolitionist leader, thanks to this piece of legislation alone, slavery would remain in effect in Brazil until the 1930s.
In 1884, a new law came into effect that freed enslaved persons who were 60 years of age or older. More perverse than the latter, this law gave owners the power to abandon enslaved persons once they had become less productive and more susceptible to diseases. Moreover, it was rare that an enslaved person even made it to his or her 60th birthday.
The Catholic Church ended its support of slavery by 1887, and not long after the Portuguese Crown began to position itself against it. On May 13, 1888, the remaining 700,000 enslaved persons in Brazil were freed.
Slaves in Minas Gerais, 1880. Photo: Marc Ferrez, Instituto Moreira Salles, via Brazilian Report
The legal end of slavery in Brazil did little to change the lives of many Afro-Brazilians. Brazil’s abolitionist movement was timid and removed, in part because it was an urban movement at a time when most slaves worked on rural properties. Yet the abolitionst movement was also more concerned with freeing the white population from what had come to be viewed as the burden of slavery. Abolitionist leaders were unconcerned with the aftermath of abolition. There were no policies to promote integration, or plans to help former enslaved persons become full citizens through providing access to education, land, or employment.
Indeed, Brazilian elites largely opposed to the idea that Brazil would have a majority Afro-Brazilian citizenry. After slavery was formally abolished as a legal institution, the government implemented a policy of branqueamento, or “whitening”—a state-sponsored attempt to “improve the bloodline” through immigration: Brazil was to accept only white Europeans or Asian immigrants. Meanwhile, with nowhere to go and no other way to earn a living, many freed slaves entered into informal agreements with their former owners. These amounted to food and shelter in exchange for free labor, thereby maintaining the status quo.
Today, vestiges of the slave system can still be witnessed in Brazilian society. It is not a coincidence that only 53 percent of the Brazilian population identify as Afro-Brazilian or mixed, but make up two-thirds of incarcerated individuals and 76 percent of the poorest segment of the population. More than any other nation in the Americas, Brazil was profoundly shaped by slavery—a legacy that the country still struggles to address more than 350 years after the first enslaved African landed on its shores.
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Government. The Federal Constitution of Brazil provides for three independent governing branches: executive, legislative, and judicial. Although the constitution has undergone several revisions in the last century, the most recent in 1988, it has always retained this division of governmental powers.
Voting in Brazil today is universal and compulsory for all literate citizens from eighteen to seventy years of age and optional for those who cannot read and write.
Leadership and Political Officials. Brazil's return to free elections in the mid-1980s after two decades of military dictatorship has not resulted in greater social and legal equity, and unequal treatment of rich and poor is ongoing. Government officials and well-to-do individuals who have committed crimes still are more likely to escape the long arm of the law than are those of lesser social status. In part, this is because Brazil is a country in which laws and regulations are passed, yet a significant proportion of them are ignored. Still, today there is growing intolerance of political corruption and a host of official inquiries are evidence that Brazilians are starting to reject impunity and demand accountability of their public officials.
One concept is key to understanding Brazilian political culture: jeitos, ways of cutting through obstacles—such as rules and red tape—to achieve a desired end. Jeitos are partly a response to Brazil's notorious bureaucratic thicket which makes getting a government document—be it a driver's license, passport, or marriage license—a cumbersome process. Those who can afford to hire despachantes (dispatchers), professional facilitators who know how to "do jeitos", to get things done. Others do jeitos on their own perhaps a small "gratuity" to a low-paid government clerk will produce the desired document.
A personalistic system of patron-client relationships is another key to the nation's political culture. One becomes a government bureaucrat or politician and rises through the ranks by developing influential connections and getting help from personal networks. Ambitious individuals cultivate powerful patrons who promote and protect them, and their own career trajectories typically rise and fall with those of their patrons.
Social Problems and Control. Given the nation's stark economic inequalities, social control in Brazil has long been problematic, even more so at the end of the twentieth century than in the past. High rates of crime, particularly in large urban areas, are a frequent topic of conversation kidnappings, assaults, and murder receive wide media coverage. The murder rate in greater São Paulo, for example, is some five times that of the New York metropolitan area. Killings by police are common particularly in poorer urban areas. Fearful for their security, corporate executives travel around in armored cars elite neighborhoods are fortified as private, guarded condominiums surrounded by high walls. Also within this urban landscape of have and have-nots live tens of thousands of street children, eking out a bare existence, ever on their guard against being rousted, or worse, by the police.
Military Activity. The role of the military in Brazilian life declined significantly following the military dictatorship that lasted from 1964 to 1985. By 2000 the three forces of the military, the army, navy, and air force, had been subsumed under a new civilian defense ministry and were forced to give up their separate cabinet-level posts. Despite considerable grumbling about this reorganization, particularly among the nationalist wing of the Air Force, no evidence exists that the Brazilian armed forces have either the ability or the desire to regain their lost power through a military coup.
First Nationalist Composition in Brazil - History
Prior to the arrival of Europeans, Brazil was settled by thousands of small tribes. These tribes did not develop writing or monumental architecture and little is known about them before 1500 CE.
- 1500 - Portuguese explorer Pedro Alvarez Cabral discovers Brazil while on route to India. He claims the land for Portugal.
Pedro Alvarez Cabral Makes Landing
Christ the Redeemer Statue in Rio
Brief Overview of the History of Brazil
Until the arrival of the Europeans, Brazil was settled by stone-age tribes. Then the Portuguese arrived in 1500 and Pedro Alvares Cabral claimed Brazil as a colony of Portugal. The first settlement was founded in 1532 and Portugal began to take more of the land. The primary export was sugar. Slaves were imported from Africa to work the fields. Brazil continued to expand through wars and battles. The Portuguese defeated the French to take Rio de Janeiro and also took over several Dutch and British outposts. Soon Brazil was one of the largest territories in the world. Today it is the 5th largest country in the world.
In 1807, the Portuguese royal family escaped from Napoleon and fled to Brazil. Although the king, Dom Joao VI, returned to Portugal in 1821, his son remained in Brazil and became emperor of the country. He declared Brazil's independence in 1822.
In 1889, Deodoro Da Fonseca led a coup to take over the government from the emperor. He changed the government to a republic ruled by a constitution. Over the years since, the country has been ruled by elected presidents as well as by military coups.
Lula da Silva was elected president in 2002. He was Brazil's first working-class president and was president for 2 terms until 2010. In 2011 Dilma Vana Rousseff became the first woman president of Brazil.
Anti-Neo-colonialism, 1972 – 1994
Although many new nations had thrown off their old colonial rulers, they found it harder to shrug off a global world of trade, markets, and capital investment. Direct rule by imperial powers was replaced by economic dependency on former colonial powers. This was the context for the rise of social revolution and the emergence of opposition to neo-colonialism, especially in the Caribbean nations of Jamaica and Grenada.
Michael Manley, son of the prominent Jamaican anti-colonial activist Norman Manley, won the 1972 election and was reelected in 1976 for a second term as prime minister. He campaigned on a platform of anti-colonialism and socialist reconstruction with his slogan "Better must come." Once in office, Manley established links with Castro's Cuba and began educational and land reforms. Most importantly, he challenged the economic power of foreign-owned industries by either assuming public control or, as in the case of the powerful bauxite-mining and alumina industries, greatly increasing their payment of taxes to the state. The U.S. government expressed concern at Manley's anti-Yankee rhetoric and his socialist activities, and the United States refused loans and attacked Jamaica's credit rating. Despite the economic slump, Manley was reelected in 1976. The following year, Manley took on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and refused the austerity of its loan conditions. But Jamaica needed credit and foreign company jobs. Manley found it difficult to pursue his socialist agenda while avoiding dependency on foreign capital. By the 1980 election, Manley's compromises had alienated his radical supporters while not satisfying his liberal opponents, which resulted in a crushing defeat for him and the PNP.
In March 1979, the New Jewel Movement (NJM) led by Maurice Bishop seized power in Grenada. Much like Manley, Bishop began to court Castro's Cuba. Washington became concerned that Grenada offered another "communist" alternative in the Western Hemisphere. The self-destruction of the NJM government and the execution of Bishop by firing squad provided the reason for U.S. intervention. On October 25, 1983, the United States landed six thousand marines and installed its own regime. This military intervention met strong condemnation by Americans of African descent in the anti-colonial tradition of the 1930s and 1950s.
It was not the Caribbean, however, that saw the greatest mobilization of African Americans on behalf of national liberation struggles. The African-American movement for liberation in South Africa has a long history stretching back to Garvey during the 1920s through the Black Freedom movement in the 1950s and 1960s. This latter freedom struggle helped spawn the black consciousness movement in South Africa during the mid-1970s that was eventually brutally crushed by the apartheid state. In response, hundreds of protests flared across the United States with several hundred arrests. Sporadic protests and continuing violence against South Africans resulted in the organization of the anti-apartheid movement, whose primary aim was to terminate racist segregation through a program of economic destabilization brought about by divestment campaigns. By 1985 to 1986, 120 public colleges and universities had either partially or fully divested their investments in South Africa. The largest divestment was by the University of California, which sold $3.1 billion of its stocks in companies trading with South Africa's apartheid state. U.S. corporations also began to get the message: by 1989, there were 106 companies operating in South Africa, down from 406 five years earlier. The combination of external pressure from sanctions and internal pressure from mass protests led by the African National Congress (ANC) and the Confederation of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) paved the way for South Africa's first nonracial elections in 1994. The election of Nelson Mandela to the presidency and his visit to the United States were cheered by many African-American people, a number of whom had played a not insignificant external role in making the apartheid state indefensible.
There were also important cultural expressions of opposition to neo-colonialism, especially in the musical genre of reggae. Its origins lay in Caribbean calypso and post – World War II American rhythm and blues. Bob Marley and his group the Wailers grew up in post-independent Jamaica. They advocated radical politics in their music from their first hit "Simmer Down" in 1964, through Rasta theology of liberation, to Marley's early death from cancer in 1981. During the 1970s, Bob Marley and the Wailers had supported Michael Manley's policies of social redistribution of wealth through such albums as Exodus and Natty Dread. Marley was an important popularizer of social issues through reggae to Jamaican and Caribbean youth, as well as millions around the world. Much of this music was also reflected in the transnational migration of Afro-Caribbean people between North American, European, and African cities.
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Heitor Villa-Lobos, (born March 5, 1887, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil—died November 17, 1959, Rio de Janeiro), Brazilian composer and one of the foremost Latin American composers of the 20th century, whose music combines indigenous melodic and rhythmic elements with Western classical music.
Villa-Lobos’s father was a librarian and an amateur musician. Under the influence of his father’s weekly musical get-togethers, the boy became interested in music. He learned to play cello (actually a modified viola) at age six and was inspired by music from Johann Sebastian Bach’s A Well-Tempered Clavier that was given to him by an aunt. While traveling with his family to various regions of the vast country, he also developed an interest in native Brazilian folk music. When they returned to Rio de Janeiro, Villa-Lobos began associating and performing with the city’s popular musicians. He learned to play the guitar. He left home at age 18 because his widowed mother opposed his “delinquent” friends and wanted him to become a doctor. Instead, he became a musical vagabond, playing cello and guitar to support himself while traveling throughout the states of Espírito Santo, Bahia, and Pernambuco, absorbing Brazilian folk music and composing his own pieces.
During this period Villa-Lobos enrolled briefly at the Instituto Nacional de Música in Rio de Janeiro, but he was to continue his travels for three years. He returned to the city with a large group of manuscripts and an intimate knowledge of the Afro-Brazilian music of the country’s northern and northeastern regions. He began a serious study of the works of Bach, Richard Wagner, and Giacomo Puccini, whose influence can be noted in his compositions. In 1915 a concert in Rio de Janeiro featured his compositions, and his career was given a vital boost that same year when the firm of Artur Napoleão began publishing his music. Although many critics initially attacked the dissonance and modernity of his work, he persisted in his efforts to merge Western music and the Brazilian vernacular tradition.
In 1919 he met the pianist Artur Rubinstein, who helped advance Villa-Lobos’s reputation by playing his music in concerts throughout the world. He composed ceaselessly (about 2,000 works are credited to him in all), and by the time of his first trip to Europe in 1923 he had produced a long list of compositions in every form, from solo pieces for guitar to trios, quartets, concerti, vocal music, and symphonies. The success of his first trip—he made Paris his home base for the remainder of the 1920s—encouraged him to organize and perform in a number of concerts during this period he published more of his work and solidified an international reputation.
In Brazil for a performance in 1930, Villa-Lobos presented a plan for music education in the São Paulo school system and was appointed director of music education there. In 1932 he took charge of music education throughout Brazil. He established a conservatory for choral singing in 1942 and, with fellow composer Oscar Lorenzo Fernandez, cofounded the Brazilian Academy of Music in 1945. Between 1944 and 1949 he traveled widely in the United States and Europe, where he wrote music for several films, received many honours, and was much in demand as a conductor.
As mentioned above, Villa-Lobos’s works are characterized by a singular blend of Western classical music and Brazilian folk songs and rhythms. One of his best-known works is Bachianas brasileiras (written 1930–45), a set of nine pieces for various instrumental and vocal groups, in which a contrapuntal technique in the manner of Bach is applied to themes of Brazilian origin. A similar series of 14 works, composed between 1920 and 1929, bears the generic title Chôros (the choro is a Brazilian country dance). Each of his 12 symphonies alludes to a historic event or place. Among his many other works are two cello concerti (1915, 1955), Momoprecoce for piano and orchestra (1929), Guitar Concerto (1951), Harp Concerto (1953), Harmonica Concerto (1955), 16 string quartets, Rudepoema for piano solo (1926 orchestrated 1942), and the symphonic poems Uirapurú (1917), Amazonas (1929), and Dawn in a Tropical Forest (1954).
This article was most recently revised and updated by Kathleen Kuiper, Senior Editor.