Celebrate what? – Daniel Costa’s (UNIFESP) review of “Independência do Brasil: a história que não terminou”, by Antonio Carlos Mazzeo and Luiz Bernardo Pericás
Abstract: The book Independência do Brasil: a história que não terminou, organized by professors Mazzeo and Pericás, presents 12 articles that reflect on the process of Independence in Brazil based on classic authors. The work seeks new considerations and elements that expand the critical approach to the historical phenomenon.
Keywords: Independence of Brazil, Critical history, Celebrations.
In 2022, Brazil celebrated and remembered three major events: the Centenary of the Modern Art Week, the Foundation of the Brazilian Communist Party and the Bicentennial of Independence. In the latter, the publishing house Boitempo presented to the public the book Independência do Brasil: the story that has not ended”, organized by professors Antonio Carlos Mazzeo and Luiz Bernardo Pericás. Throughout twelve articles, the work intends to present to the reader the reflections carried out up to the moment about the process of colonization and independence in Brazil. As stated by the organizers in the presentation of the book, the works presented seek to bring these reflections based on authors such as Raymundo Faoro, Caio Prado Júnior, Fernando A. Novais, Carlos Guilherme Mota, Florestan Fernandes, Maria Odila da Silva Dias, Emília Viotti da Costa, Paula Beiguelman and Nelson Werneck Sodré According to Mazzeo and Pericás, it is essential to return to these classic interpretations, despite always starting from previous studies and including new considerations and elements that expand the historical-historical approach. critique of the topic.
The Independence process is the result of a complex scenario, different from that presented by those who dominated the nation over time or by authors linked to a critical historiography. According to the historian Rodrigo Ricupero, the prospect of an Independence resulting only from “an agreement between D. Pedro and his father D. João VI, with the English seal” results in an Independence without heroes, without struggles and without popular participation. However, Independence is the result of a much more complex process, marked by the decay of the Old Regime in Europe and the crisis of the colonial system in America. For Bernardo Ricupero, independence is “a direct result of the Liberal Revolution of Porto in 1820, the final stage of the ‘Age of Revolutions'”.
During the moment when the bicentennial was affected by the attempt to capture the neo-fascist government that was in power, the publication that we are now commenting on appeared like a ray of light in the midst of darkness. The shallow nationalist discourse sought to erase the contradictions in the construction of the idea of nation, but the publication showed the need for reflection on this controversial topic. Its organizers invited researchers from different historiographical perspectives to deepen reflections on the event.
The book has an introduction with an essay by renowned historian Fernando A. Novais, who based his work on other important essays on the subject. Novais highlights the relevance of the concept of “colonial system crisis” today, despite the efforts of some historians to refute it.
Next, Antonio Carlos Mazzeo discusses the construction of bourgeois autocracy in Brazil, based on the founding elements of the social morphology resulting from colonization. Osvaldo Coggiola discusses the process of political emancipation, highlighting the economic and social variables, based on the Braudelian concept of long duration. Luiz Bernardo Pericás also presents his perspective on the Independence of Brazil in his essay “Independence of Brazil: notes”.
In the text “The Brazilian economy in the beginning of the 19th century”, Herbert S. Klein and Francisco Vidal Luna show the impact of the economy on the process that resulted in the events of 1822. Approaching a specific case from that period, professor Vera Lucia Amaral Ferlini and Professor Pablo Olller Month Serrath, in his essay “The São Paulo sugar economy and the Independence process”, presents the role played by sugar producers and the São Paulo sugarocracy in the process. The political economy of communications and geographic information in the period, as well as the circulation of books and the development of the press, are addressed by Íris Kantor and Pérola Maria Goldfeder and Marisa Midori. Kantor and Goldfeder present the essay “In the wake of letters and maps: the political economy of postal communications and geographic information in the conjuncture of Independence (1798–1831)”, while Midori presents “Independence and books: a history about the future”.
Based on the text “A Independência e o protagonismo popular”, published on the blog Brasil: bicentenário das Independências, Sérgio Guerra Filho briefly presents the struggles for Independence in Bahia, before proposing a discussion on the facts that led to this situation. Throughout the text, the author seeks to identify the forms of participation of the popular classes during the war period.
The work “Independência do Brasil: a história que não terminou” ends with the profile of two classic intellectuals who are fundamental in the interpretation of the Brazilian historical formation. The São Paulo historian Caio Prado Júnior is reviewed by Lincoln Secco in his essay “Caio Prado Júnior and Independence”, while the Paraiba historian Celso Furtado is reviewed by professors Alexandre de Freitas Barbosa, Roberto Pereira Silva and Alexandre Macchione Saes in “Celso Furtado and the (Independence of Brazil”. To understand it, say the authors, it is necessary to start from the context in which their works were written, where national sovereignty is always reassessed.
According to Rodrigo Ricupero, the publication is “an important and necessary resumption of studies on the Independence of Brazil”, helping to overcome an excessively simplistic view. For the historian Carlos Guilherme Mota, the book reveals the progress of historiography on the Independence of Brazil, with classic authors and new generations contributing to a new historiographical era “more serene and dense, far from post-modernizing visions”.
The book fulfills the objectives outlined in the introduction, of presenting the reader with a substantial set of studies that discuss aspects of the colonization process and Independence and it did so with quality, bringing aspects of a dual process, because, at the same time that the rupture is sealed with the metropolis, the continuity of some aspects of the colonial dynamics, such as slavery, is perceptible. In the midst of narrative disputes around the value and legacy of the Independence of Brazil, the work organized by professors Mazzeo and Pericás becomes a cornerstone in the construction of critical thinking and should be read both by researchers who work with the themes discussed at the throughout the work and the general public who want to seek ways to understand the intricate path that has brought us here as a nation.
Summary of Independência do Brasil: a história que não terminou
- Independência: dimensões e passagens | Fernando A. Novais
- Fundamentos históricos da autocracia burguesa no Brasil | Antonio Carlos Mazzeo
- Crise do colonialismo e Independência do Brasil | Osvaldo Coggiola
- Independência do Brasil: apontamentos | Luiz Bernardo Pericás
- A economia brasileira no início do século XIX |Francisco Vidal Luna e Herbert S. Klein
- Açúcar e Independência: o papel das elites paulistas | Vera Lúcia Amaral Ferlini e Pablo Oller Month Serrath
- O protagonismo popular na Guerra da Bahia (1822-1823) | Sérgio Guerra Filho
- No rastro das cartas e dos mapas: a economia política das comunicações postais e a informação geográfica na conjuntura da Independência (1798-1831) | Íris Kantor e Pérola Maria Goldfeder Borges de Castro
- A Independência e os livros: uma história sobre o futuro | Marisa Midori Deaecto
- Tributar para seguir: fiscalidade e conflito no registro do Rio Negro a partir da Independência do Brasil | Camila Scacchetti, Guilherme Grandi e Luciana Suarez Galvão
- Caio Prado Júnior e a Independência | Lincoln Secco
- Celso Furtado e a (In)dependência do Brasil | Alexandre de Freitas Barbosa, Roberto Pereira Silva e Alexandre Macchione Saes
- Sobre os autores
Daniel Costa is a historian and professor, with a degree in History from Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP), he has carried out research on corruption in Portuguese America, specifically in the 18th century. He published, among other works, “Corrupção, corruptores e contrabando: uma discussão historiográfica sobre práticas ilícitas na América Portuguesa (C. Século XVIII) (2022)” e “Caminhando entre veredas: Apontamentos sobre o contrabando e corrupção na América portuguesa (Pernambuco 1758-1778) (2023)”. ID LATTES: http://lattes.cnpq.br/9383874655339999 ; ID ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7786-2678; E-mail: [email protected].
To cite this review
MAZZEO, Antonio Carlos; PERICÁS, Luiz Bernardo. Independência d Brasil: A história que não terminou. São Paulo: Boitempo, 2022. Epub. Reviwed bu: COSTA, Daniel. Celebrate what? Crítica Historiográfica. Natal, v.3, n.10, mar./apr., 2023. Available in: <https://www.criticahistoriografica.com.br/en/celebrate-what-review-of-independence-of-brazil-the-story-that-did-not-end-by-antonio-carlos-mazzeo-and-luiz-bernardo-pericas/> DOI: 10.29327/254374.3.10-9
© – Authors who publish in Historiographical Criticism agree to the distribution, remixing, adaptation and creation of their texts, even for commercial purposes, provided that due credit is guaranteed for the original creations. (CC BY-SA).
Crítica Historiográfica. Natal, v.3, n.1o, mar./apr., 2023 | ISSN 2764-2666