Admirable but Not Imitable: Brazilian Interpretations of the United States, 1910-1960

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Overview

Title
Admirable but Not Imitable: Brazilian Interpretations of the United States, 1910-1960
Contributors
Legg, Benjamin W (creator)
Vieira, Nelson (Director)
Valente, Luiz (Reader)
Green, James (Reader)
Brown University. Portuguese and Brazilian Studies (sponsor)
Doi
10.7301/Z0BK19R0
Copyright Date
2016
Abstract
Abstract of “Admirable but Not Imitable: Brazilian Interpretations of the United States, 1910-1960” by Benjamin Legg, PhD., Brown University, May 2016. This dissertation examines texts by major Brazilian intellectual figures from the first half of the twentieth century in an attempt to identify a trajectory of Brazilian thought around the United States and its relationship with Brazil. The key intellectuals studied in this dissertation are Gilberto Freyre, Monteiro Lobato, Erico Verissimo, Rachel de Queiroz, Vianna Moog and Alceu Amoroso Lima, with focus given to works published between 1910 and 1960, a period in which Brazilian intellectuals engaged in a marked project of national identity formation. Through the analysis of newspaper and magazine articles, fictional works, travelogues, interpretative essays, and personal correspondence, I identify these writers’ varied perceptions of the United States, and connect their efforts to evaluate and interpret the northern giant to their projects of the articulation of a stronger national identity. These writers were able to convey a sense of the United States to a broader Brazilian public that lacked the ability for firsthand experience with that country, while they reinforced a sovereign Brazilian national subjectivity. I contextualize my analysis of these texts with an examination of the historical narrative that accompanied these inter-American encounters, as well as biographical research of the highlighted individuals. This project takes a multi-faceted critical approach, and looks to theoretic works on national identity formation, postcolonial travel narrative and international relations to provide an analytic base. Brazil’s relationship with the United States is multi-faceted and complex, and my research, while it attempts to identify a master narrative of that relationship, also recognizes the complexities and apparent paradoxes that must be comprehended to enhance such an encounter.
Keywords
Brazil-United States Relations
Brazilian National Identity
Transnational Perceptions
Travel Narrative
Brazilian Intellectual History
Travel writing
Notes
Thesis (Ph.D. -- Brown University (2016)
Extent
8, 271 p.

Citation

Legg, Benjamin W., "Admirable but Not Imitable: Brazilian Interpretations of the United States, 1910-1960" (2016). Portuguese and Brazilian Studies Theses and Dissertations. Brown Digital Repository. Brown University Library. https://doi.org/10.7301/Z0BK19R0

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