Brazil under Vargas


The following study of government and politics in Brazil under Vargas strives to present to the American reader as impartial and documentally substantiated a report as is possible for a foreign constitutional lawyer. Considering the brevity of his own personal experience in the country under investigation and the prevailing difficulty of appraising a foreign system of government, such an undertaking may appear audacious and even presumptuous. But the author can plead extenuating circumstances.

In the first place there is a gap to be filled. Surprising as it is, no objective book on the Vargas regime has yet been published in English, or in any other language for that matter. No Brazilian lawyer or political scientist would undertake a task which by virtue of the controversial material might involve a good deal of faultfinding with the Powers That Be. The French, usually the first when it comes to analyzing a novel system of government, were barred from this mission by the war. To political science in Nazi Germany, Brazil does not seem to have offered much appeal. Americans, by reason of their geographical propinquity and hemisphere collaboration, should be more interested than others in present-day Brazil; but we are strangely disinclined to break down our ingrained provincialism and devote scientific effort to a task which demands for its successful completion an understanding of the Latin mind as well as familiarity with governmental processes based on European tradition.

Here lies the second of the extenuating circumstances the . . .

Additional information

Publisher: Place of publication:
  • New York
Publication year:
  • 1942


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