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Racism and Ethnic Relations in the Portuguese-Speaking World$
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Francisco Bethencourt and Adrian Pearce

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780197265246

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197265246.001.0001

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Colour and Race in Brazil: From Whitening to the Search for Afro-Descent

Colour and Race in Brazil: From Whitening to the Search for Afro-Descent

Chapter:
(p.16) (p.17) 1. Colour and Race in Brazil: From Whitening to the Search for Afro-Descent
Source:
Racism and Ethnic Relations in the Portuguese-Speaking World
Author(s):

ANTÓNIO SÉRGIO ALFREDO GUIMARÃES

Publisher:
British Academy
DOI:10.5871/bacad/9780197265246.003.0002

The purpose of this chapter is to clarify the way in which Brazil has developed a system of colour classification with regard to Afro-descendants in the period since abolition. The intention is not only to show how this system developed over time, but also how it has been shaped by the mobilisation of the black population around the notion of race: as a group sharing solidarity and common experiences of subordination and discrimination. The strategy is to trace the terms ‘colour’ and ‘race’ and their meanings through time, as used or systematised into classifications by the state, social movements and social scientists. This study is both preliminary and incomplete, but it is hoped that it can serve as a guide for future and more systematic research on specific periods, places and social agents.

Keywords:   colour, race, Brazil, racial identity, national identity

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