Seminars

  • Founded
    1976
  • Seminar Number
    557

Recently completed field studies and research from primary sources on Brazil constitute the main interest of this seminar. Brazilian, the U.S. and other visiting scholars participate, contributing their interpretations of recent events. Portuguese may be spoken whenever convenient.


Co-Chairs
Professor Diana Brown
dbrown@bard.edu

Professor John F. Collins
zemilideias@yahoo.com

Professor Sidney M. Greenfield
sidneygreenfield@gmail.com

Professor Vania Penha-Lopes
vania_penha-lopes@bloomfield.edu 

Rapporteur
Bruna Credidio Camara
bruna.credidio@columbia.edu


All seminars will continue to meet virtually through February 2022. Meeting links provided upon RSVP. Meeting dates and times are subject to change.

Meeting Schedule

09/23/2021 Online Meeting
7:15 PM
Infrastructural Citizenship and Class Mobility in Recent Brazil
Université libre de Bruxelles (Belgium), Moisés Kopper
Abstract

Abstract

On the eve of the 2008 financial crisis, Brazil implemented its largest-ever public housing program, the Minha Casa, Minha Vida. Drawing on a five-year-long ethnography among city planners, architects, street-level bureaucrats, politicians, market and bank representatives, community leaders, and past, present, and future beneficiaries, I will examine how communal idealism, electoral politics, and consumer markets made first-time homeownership a reality for millions of low-income Brazilians over the last ten years. Between 2009 and 2016, Brazil’s Workers’ Party relied on financialized low-income housing to reduce poverty, promote democratic governance, and raise the country’s international profile. By showing how these efforts came together in the making a model community of housing activists, I will examine some of the value systems and novel arrangements of power and market that underlie Brazil’s post-neoliberal project of modern and inclusive development. I posit the concept of “material hope” to understand how practices of infrastructural citizenship and projects of upward social mobility coalesced to generate ambivalent political and economic subjectivities. By chronicling the making and remaking of material hope in the aftermath of Minha Casa Minha Vida’s public and private infrastructure, I reopen the future as a powerful venue for ethnographic inquiry and urban development.





10/21/2021 Online Meeting
7:15 PM
Ecoculturing the infant gut microbiome in urban Brazil: anthropological contributions to a burgeoning field of study
Barbara Piperata, The Ohio State University
Abstract

Abstract

The past decade has seen an explosion in research on the gut microbiome. Much attention has been given to infants, as it is argued that the first 2-3 years of life represent a critical window in the formation of the community structure of the gut microbiota, with implications for health over the life course. Largely missing from this ample literature are perspectives from the social sciences. In this talk I will focus on the use of anthropological theory and methods to understand how culture via beliefs, norms and everyday routines shape the gut microbiome. In addition to discussing the need for social science perspectives in human microbiome research, I will also share some of the challenges faced conducting a large, interdisciplinary and international study on human health during a pandemic.





02/17/2022 Online Meeting
7:15 PM
Justiça Racial e Reparações – O Caminho para a Democracia no Brasil
Diva Moreira,
Abstract

Abstract

A palestrante vai abordar o tema da reparação da dívida decorrente do tráfico negreiro e do racismo estrutural, institucional e pessoal, contra os povos afrodescendentes e indígenas, como estratégia capaz de transformar radicalmente a sociedade e o estado brasileiro, fundados em seculares desigualdades e exclusões. Para isto, defende a construção de um debate político sólido que tenha como base a noção ética de que os danos infligidos a uma coletividade devem ser compensados, o que se perde na memória da humanidade. Para isto, vai se reportar a textos milenares da Bíblia, em um país em que ampla maioria se considera cristã. A ideia de reparação tem também respaldo internacional e integra declarações das Nações Unidas na III Conferência Contra o Racismo, que faz 20 anos e na resolução 2002/68, Item 8, na 58ª Sessão da Comissão de Direitos Humanos da ONU que criou um grupo de trabalho sobre os afrodescendentes da Diáspora, no ano seguinte a Durban. A ideia tem precedentes históricos: em favor dos judeus pelo genocídio durante o nazismo, e em favor dos japoneses expropriados de seus bens e aprisionados em campos de concentração, nos Estados Unidos, sob alegação de ameaça à segurança nacional, no decorrer da II guerra mundial. Finalmente, trata-se de um problema atual, como a produção acadêmica, sobretudo americana e europeia, demonstra, e como os movimentos sociais indígenas, afro-americanos, e governos africanos reivindicam, como recentemente aconteceu com os povos indígenas do Canadá, e o pagamento da dívida da Alemanha contra o genocídio dos grupos étnicos Herero e Nama na Namíbia.





Notes: Meeting will be held in Portuguese
03/17/2022 Online Meeting
7:15 PM

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04/04/2022 Online Meeting
7:00 PM

Tracy D. Guzman, University of Miami




Notes: Joint meeting with the seminar on Human Rights
04/21/2022 Online Meeting
7:00 PM

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05/12/2022 Online Meeting
7:15 PM

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