Gilberto Freyre

  • Gilberto Freyre
Sociologist, Anthropologist, Researcher
Principal country concerned : Column : History/society, Intercultural/migrations

Gilberto de Mello Freyre (March 15, 1900 – July 18, 1987) was a Brazilian sociologist, anthropologist, historian, writer, painter, journalist and congressman, born in Recife, Northeast Brazil.

His best-known work is a sociological treatise named Casa-Grande & Senzala (variously translated, but roughly The Masters and the Slaves, as on a traditional plantation). Two sequels followed, The Mansions and the Shanties: the making of modern Brazil and Order and Progress: Brazil from monarchy to republic. The trilogy is generally considered a classic of modern cultural anthropology and social history, although it is not without its critics.

The actions of Freyre as a public intellectual are rather controversial. Labeled as a communist in the 1930s, he later moved to the political Right. He supported Portugal's Salazar government in the 1950s, and after 1964 he defended the military dictatorship of Brazil's Humberto Castelo Branco. Freyre is considered to be the "father" of lusotropicalism: the theory whereby miscegenation had been a positive force in Brazil. "Miscegenation" at that time tended to be viewed in a negative way, as in the theories of Eugen Fischer and Charles Davenport.
Freyre was also recognised by his literary style. His poem "Bahia of all saints and of almost all sins" provoked Manuel Bandeira's enthusiasm. Freyre wrote this long poem inspired by his first visit to Salvador. Manuel Bandeira wrote about it in June 1927: "Your poem, Gilberto, will be an eternal source of jealousy to me"(cf. Manuel Bandeira, Poesia e Prosa. Rio de Janeiro: Aguilar, 1958, v. II: Prose, p. 1398)

Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


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