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Coalitions and Social Cleavages. Societies have different social divisions (cleavages) Class divisions (upper/middle/lower class) Regional divisions (North/South...provinces vs. Capital) Economic-sector divisions (industries vs. agriculture)

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Coalitions and social cleavages l.jpg
Coalitions and Social Cleavages

  • Societies have different social divisions (cleavages)

    • Class divisions (upper/middle/lower class)

    • Regional divisions (North/South...provinces vs. Capital)

    • Economic-sector divisions (industries vs. agriculture)

    • Racial divisions (white vs. Black vs. Latinos, etc.)

  • Every country has different social cleavages

  • ChileUnited States

  • Upper/middle/lower class Upper/middle/lower class

  • Rural/Capital Rural/Capital

  • NO South/North division South/North econ. division

  • NO State divisions State divisions

  • Mestizos/Natives White/Black/Hispanics/natives


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The example of Argentina

  • Argentina: A rich country with high political and economic instability, why?

  • Coalition politics --> intra-elite conflicts explaining political and economic instability.

  • Coalitions that exclude great sectors of society. Different cleavages:

    • Provinces vs. Capital (conflicts among elites)

    • Landowners vs. Industrialists/workers (during the Peronist period)

    • Landowners/Financial sector vs. Workers (during Menem)

    • (NO significant racial division)

    • (NO significant peasant groups)


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The Example of Brazil

  • Brazil: mid-level country in terms of human development.

  • The most unequal country in Latin America. High level of poverty, political and economic instability, why?

  • Different cleavages in society explaining :

  • North vs. South States

  • Landowners vs. Peasants

  • Industrialists vs. Workers

  • Rich vs. Poor

  • White/mulato vs. black


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Brazil:“God is Brazilian” (really?!)

  • Today Overview 160 million

  • mid-level of human development

  • High industrialization in LA

  • Nuclear capability

  • Rich in natural resources

  • Highest level of income inequality in LA

  • High levels of poverty (close to 50%)

  • The best soccer players in the world

  • Samba, jazz, musicians, and rhythm!


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Brazil: Brief Historical Overview

  • Brazil colonized by Portugal

  • 1600s-1822 Colony with high level of autonomy from Portugal

  • Common path of economic development: export raw material to Portugal. Examples: Sugar, beans, coffee, rubber

  • Important trade of slaves from Africa (mixed society)

  • 1822-1889: Brazilian Empire (1870-1889: End of Slavery)

  • 1889-1930: First Republic (Governors’ decentralization)


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Brazil:Socio-Economic cleavages

  • 1600s-1930s Economy based on raw material exports

  • 1800s- Sugar plantations in the North of Brazil (blacks)

  • Early 1900s: Rubber boom North and East

  • 1900s : Coffee (South of Brazil) (70% world market 1900/ 18% 1978)

  • Brazil depended on world economic up and downs

  • 1940s- : Industrialization in the South (Sao Paulo)

  • Brazil: two worlds

  • NorthSouth

  • Landlords sugar Landlords-coffee/industrialists

  • middle class in cities middle class in cities

  • Black/peasants peasants/industry workers


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Brazil overviewPolitical development in the 20th century

  • Before 1930: Landlords controlling political development.

  • State governors disputed power (South-coffee, North-Sugar)

  • 1930-1945: Estado Novo (New State) Industrialization

    • Getulio Vargas

  • 1946-1964: New Republic

    • Several unstable governments

    • Military interventions (46/54/55/61/64)

  • 1964-1985: Military regime (economic miracle/political repression)

  • 1985- today: Democratic time


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The main conflicts

  • Intra -elites conflicts (between the Sugar landowners and coffee landowners; between landlords and industrialists)

  • Among States. Governors control politics in each state. Central government has to deal with different states

  • Peasants fighting for land

  • Workers fighting for more rights

  • Middle class looking for safety/better income

  • Poor in cities (mostly blacks) fighting for food/housing


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One “solution”:Estado Novo (Vargas 1930-1945)

  • What are the main changes Vargas tried to introduce?

    • Economically?

    • Politically?

    • Institutionally?

  • How did he do it?

  • Why did he fall in 1945?


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Another “solution”:Military regime (1964-1985)

  • Military: high history of intervention in politics

    • 1930/1937/1945/1954/1955/1961

  • Bureaucratic-Authoritarian regime

  • Coalition of military officers/Technocratic/administration

  • highly anti-politics and anti-communists

  • 1964? Reaction toward Goulart social policies

  • Economic politics based on:

    • repression of labor unions

    • Incentives to investment through big projects

    • Impressive economic growth 1969-1978 (Brazilian Miracle)--Growth but increasing foreign debt.


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Transition to DemocracyTransition to neo-liberal model

  • Politically: Economically

  • 1985-1990 Sarney no growth/Inflation

  • 1990-1992 Collor de Mello (Empeachment) Neo-liberal reform

  • 1992-1994 Franco Mixed

  • 1994-1999 Cardoso Neoliberal reform

  • 2000- Cardoso (reelection) Neoliberal reform

  • Main issues in Brazilian Politics:

  • a) Political corruption/ police corruption/

  • b) Landless movement. Cardoso promoted land reform

  • c) Need to stabilize economy (fiscal deficit/no growth/no revenues)

  • d) Conflicts between states and federal state spending


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Poverty: Some data on LA and Brazil

  • Latin America

  • Brazil:

  • 10% of population earn $1 a day

  • (officially) 22% are below the poverty line

  • (extra-officially) 40% are below poverty line

  • 60% of population without access to basic drugs

  • 10% of the population is undernourished


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The Structural Adjustment in Brazil

  • Inflation in Brazil 1990-2000


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Structural Adjustment in Brazil: Unemployment

  • Unemployment in Brazil 1992-2000


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Structural Adjustment in Brazil:Economic Growth

  • GDP per capita


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Structural Adjustment in Brazil:Fiscal DeficitDifference between Total State Expenses and Revenues


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States pressure Federal state to increase state budgets

IMF, elites pressure to reduce taxes

Landless movement ask for land

Middle class want to keep jobs in the state

International organizations trying to protect the Amazons

Poor people protesting for lack of food, and basic rights

Federal State needs to reduce fiscal deficit--> pressures over states

Federal Sates needs revenues --> pressures over mid/upper class

Government give land in Amazons border

IMF and government try to reduce state apparatus

Corporations trying to influence the government to exploit natural resources

Government controlling social unrest

The main tensions today


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