Brazil, Land of the Future

Brazil, Land of the Future

Brazil, Land of the Future

Brazil, Land of the Future

Excerpt

In the old days the novelist, when placing a book on the market, frankly informed his prospective readers in a preface for which reasons, from what point of view, and with what intentions he bad written it. It was a good idea. It created by its informality and directness a basic understanding between the author and his public. And so I also want to state as honestly as possible what persuaded me to choose a theme which may seem far removed from the subjects about which I am accustomed to write.

In 1936, when I was invited to go to the Argentine for the P.E.N. Club Congress in Buenos Aires, I received an invitation at the same time to visit Brazil. I did not expect very much. My ideas of Brazil coincided with those of the average European and North American. It is only with an effort that I can reconstruct them today: it was very difficult to distinguish any one of these South American republics from the other; they all had a hot and unhealthy climate, political unrest, and desperate financial conditions; they were badly governed, and semi-civilized, and only near the coastal cities. At the same time the scenery was beautiful and there were numerous unexplored possibilities--in short, a land for desperate immigrants and settlers . . .

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