Small farmer and rural worker pressure groups in Brazil

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Small farmer and rural worker pressure groups in Brazil
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Pearson, Neale John, 1930-
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Pressure groups   ( lcsh )
Power (Social sciences)   ( lcsh )
Agriculture -- Brazil   ( lcsh )
Grupos de presión -- Brasil
Politics and government -- Brazil   ( lcsh )
Condiciones rurales -- Brazil   ( lcsh )
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non-fiction   ( marcgt )

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Thesis:
Thesis--University of Florida.
Bibliography:
Bibliography: ℓ. 347-378
Statement of Responsibility:
By John Neale Pearson.
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Manuscript copy.
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Vita.

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Full Text













SMALL FARMER AND RURAL WORKER
PRESSURE GROUPS IN BRAZIL













By
NEALE JOHN PEARSON













A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE COUNCIL OF
THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE
DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY











UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
December, 1967

































Copyright by
Neale John Pearson
1967











PREFACE


Organized pressure groups play an exceedingly important role

in the functioning of a political system.1 Numerous writers have

suggested the need of making studies of pressure groups2 and a

few interesting studies have appeared,3 but very little is really


1David B. Truman, The Governmental Process (Twelfth Printing;
New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1962), pp. 47-51 and 403-524; Joseph La
Palombara, Interest Groups in Italian Politics (Princeton: Princeton
University Press, 1964), pp. 13-14 and 255-258; Harold Eckstein,
Pressure Group Politics (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1960),
esp. pp. 7-39 and 151-161; Joseph La Palombara, "The Utility and
Limitations of Interest Group Theory in Non-American Field Situa-
tion," Journal of Politics, Vol. XXII (February, 1960), pp. 29-49;
and Roy Macridis, "Interest Groups in Comparative Analysis," Journal
of Politics, Vol. XXIII (February, 1961), pp. 25-45.

2George I. Blanksten, "Political Groups in Latin America,"
American Political Science Review, Vol. LIII (March, 1959)., p. 122;
Gabriel A. Almond, "A Comparative Study of Interest Groups and the'
Political Process," American Political Science Review, Vol. XLI
(March, 1958), pp. 270-282; Henry W. Ehrmann, Interest Groups on Four
Continents (University of Pittsburgh Press, Pittsburgh, Pa., 1964);
Glucio Ary Soares, "Interesse Polftico, Conflito e Press6es e
Abstenc5o Eleitoral," Revista de Direito Publico e Ciencia Polftica,,
Vol. IV (January, 1961), pp. 58-82; George I. Blanksten, "The Politics
of Latin America," in The Politics of Developing Areas, Gabriel Almond
and James Coleman (ed.) (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1960),
pp. 455-529; and Merle Kling, "The State of Research in Latin America:
Political Science," in Social Science Research in Latin America,
Charles Wagley (ed.) (New York, N.Y.: Columbia University Press, 1964),
pp. 168-213.

3Merle Kling, A Mexican Interest Group in Action (New York,
N.Y.: Prentice Hall, 1961), Frank R. Brandenburg, "Organized
Business in Mexico," Inter-American Economic Affairs, Vol. XII
(Winter, 1958), pp. 26-50; Manoel Cardozo, "The Brazilian Church
and'the New Left," Journal of Inter-American Studies (July, 1964),
pp. 313-323; Leonard D. Therry, "Dominant Power Components in the
Brazilian University Student Movement Prior to April, 1964,"
Journal of Inter-American Studies (January, 1965), pp. 27-48.








known about the activities of pressure groups in general in Latin Amer-

ica and even less is known about small farmer and rural worker organ-

izations.l It is especially important to study agricultural pressure

groups in Brazil because

1. 50-60 per cent of the population is rural, and

2. It is a large and complex country with groups ranging from

the Amazon Indians who are still at the level of the Stone or Bronze

age to the urban inhabitants of Sao Paulo who live in the age of the

electronic computer.

Of course it must be remembered that interest groups analysis

is neither an exclusive nor a complete method of evaluating the deci-

sion-making process. Nevertheless, case studies do provide concrete

data upon which further generalizations can be constructed which may

buttress or qualify existing hypotheses. It is upon this premise

that this study has been undertaken.


1Among the earliest were John Powell, "Preliminary Report on
the Federaci6n Campesina de Venezuela, Origins, Leadership and Role
in Agrarian Reform Programs" (Madison: University of Wisconsin,
Land Tenure Center, 1964) (mimeographed); Richard Patch, "Bolivia,
United States' Assistance in a Revolutionary Setting," in Richard
Adams, et al., Social Change in Latin America (New York: Vintage
Books, Random House, 1960), pp. 108-176, which discusses the
participation of peasant groups in the post-1952 Revolutionary
period, especially in Agrarian Reform; and Henry Landsberger and
Fernando Canitrot, Iglesia, clase media y el movimiehto sindical
campesino (Santiago: Universidad de Chile, Faculty of Economics)
(mimeographed); Neale J. Pearson, "The Confederacion Nacional
Campesina de Guatemala (CNCG) and Peasant Unionism in Guatemala,
1944," unpublished Master's Thesis, Georgetown University, 1964,
and "Latin American Peasant Pressure Groups and the Modernization
Process," Journal of International Affairs, Vol. XX (1966), No. 2,
pp. 309-317; and Anibal Quijano, "Contemporary Peasant Movements,"
Elites in Latin America (New York: Oxford University Press, 1967),
pp. 301-340.
The only descriptive and theoretical analysis of recent peasant








Ten Years of Agitation and Change


In Brazil, the Army, large landowners, bankers, industrial-

ists, merchants, and the Roman Catholic Church were the principal

pressure groups active in the political life of the Portuguese

colony and nation until the twentieth century. Since World War I,

organized urban workers have exercised some influence through their

trade unions (sindicatos).l In the past thirty-five years, co-

operatives of small farmers in the South have sometimes found means

of protecting or advancing their interests at the local and state

level, but organized groups of peasants2 have been important at the

national level only in the last decade.

Peasants and their problems first became an important subject

of interest to the general public in Brazil after a series of articles


movements in Brazil is that of the Dutch Sociologist Benno Galjart,
"Class and 'Following' in Rural Brazil," America Latina (Rio de
Janeiro), July-September, 1964, p. 3.

1For the beginnings of the Brazilian labor movement see the
following booksby Robert Alexander, Communism in Latin America (New
Brunswick, New Jersey: Rutgers University Press, 1957), Chapter
VII, and Chapters on Brazil in Labor Relations in Argentina,
Brazil and Chile (New York: McGraw Hill, 1962), and Organized
Labor in Latin America (Studies in Contemporary Latin America)
(New York: The Free Press, 1965), Chapter VI.

2There is no standard definition of peasant for Latin America
or any other part of the world. This writer accepts a part of Eric
R. Wolf's definition that they are any kind of "rural cultivator"
of low status who works on the land with his hands and has some
consciousness of the regional or national economic and political
order in which he lives. The definition does not cover those who
practice slash-and-burn agriculture and who would most closely fit
the folk or kinship community on a fold-urban community continuum.
The definition also does not pre-judge that peasant surpluses are
necessarily transferred to a dominant group of rulers. Wolf's
concept, as expressed in Peasants (Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey:
Prentice Hall, 1966), pp. 3-4, includes not only owners but also
tenants, landless laborers, share-croppers, serfs, etc.









was published in the late 1950's about Francisco Juliao Arruda de

Paula, a hitherto obscure Pernambuco Alternate State Deputy, who

helped organize Peasant Leagues in the Northeast.1 Juliao, who

had switched from the Republican Party (PR) to the Brazilian

Socialist Party (PSB), combined a moralistic indignation about

legitimate grievances of Pernambuco peasants with an astute percep-

tion of the propaganda value of his real and alleged connections

with various world leaders, including Pope John XXIII and Mao Tse-

tung. This was the time when Fidel Castro made his great impact

on Latin America, and United States officials worried about another

radical revolutionary taking over in a much larger country than Cuba.2

Most of the articles on Juliao and the Peasant Leagues were polemical

or laudatory in the extreme; only a small number of academicians and

even fewer journalists tried to find out more about Juliao's back-

ground and place in the context of traditional Brazilian politics.3

Juliao first gained nationwide attention in a series of
articles by Antonio Callado in Correio da Manha (Rio de Janeiro),
September 10-23, 1959, which were collected in a book, Os Industriais
da Seca e os Galileus de Pernambuco (Rio de Janeiro: Editora
Civilizacao Brasileira, 1960).
Further controversy in the Brazilian Congress and the news
media led to the publication of an article "A Revoluqao das Enxada$,'
Manchete (Rio de Janeiro), No. 398, December, 1959, pp. 84-86, which
publicized the funeral of Antonio de Paula, "first martyr of the
peasant leagues" without mentioning his kinship relationship to
Juliao.
First significant mention in the United States Press came in
an article by Tad Szulc, "Brazil's Poverty Breeding Unrest," New
York Times (October 31, 1960), p. 1.

2"Now There's Another 'Castro' to Worry U.S.," U.S. News and
World Report (March 13, 1961), pp. 53-54, and "Fidel Front Organizes
Impoverished Peasants," Life (June 2, 1961), pp. 82-88, are typical.

3One of the few writers to understand the "manufactured crises"


vi








In short, little scholarly attention was paid to the Peasant Leagues

phenomenon although a great deal of literature was published.

At the same time, other politicians, and even plantation owners

began to organize sindicatos and other organizations. The politicians

organized the peasants as springboards for political advancement.

The clergymen, in reaction to the demagoguery of many politicians,

organized the peasants to alleviate their misery. And the large

plantation owners and sugar mill operators organized the peasants

to inhibit the growth of organized peasant interest groups making

demands upon themselves. These groups seldom received or sought

the publicity given Juliao and the Peasant Leagues. In all of these

groups, there were personal and ideological differences between

actual and potential leaders over policies and tactics. It is also

essential to view the growth and actions of peasant pressure groups

in a context in which techniques varied from state to state and

region to region. There were few monolithic patterns of behavior.

The emergence of the new groups was accompanied by violence and

extra-legal activities.' But in the Brazilian context, it is


or "emergencies" of Northeast politics was Stefan H. Robock, "Fact
and Fancy in Northeast Brazil," The Progressive, Vol. XXVII, No. 4
(April, 1963), pp. 37-40, and Brazil's Developinq Northeast (Wash-
ington: The Brookings Institution, 1963).
Anthony Leeds, "Brazil and the Myth of Francisco Juliao," in
Politics of Change in Latin America, 'Joseph.Maier and R. W. Weather-
head (eds.) (New York: Frederick Praeger, 1964), p. 164, is one of
the few articles which note Juligo's origins as a member of the
landed gentry in Pernambuco, although a "somewhat aberrant and
individualistic but, not properly speaking, dissident faction of it."

1James L. Payne, "Peru, the Politics of Structured Violence,"
Journal of Politics. Vol. XXVII, No. 2 (May, 1965), pp. 362-374, and
Labor and Politics in Peru (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1965),
pp. viii-ix and 3-26, offers a model in the use of structured violence
vii









impractical to view politics and peasant-landowner relations in many

areas of the country in a constitutional framework, for constitu-

tionalism, equal access to decision-makers for all groups, and the

rule of law were not the model patterns of interaction. Violence

or power capabilities2 in the form of strikes, armed invasions of

plantations, destruction of bridges or telephone systems, assassina-

tion of a farm administrator or peasant--or fabricated reports of

such incidents--are not aberrations or anomic behavior3 in the

Brazilian scene but are "normal" in a purely descriptive sense.4


parallel to that of the traditional areas of the Northeast and West
Central parts of Brazil.
IAlbert 0. Hirschman, Journeys Toward Progress (Studies of
Economic Policy-Making in Latin America) (New York: Twentieth
Century Fund, 1963), p. 229, notes that the mechanisms for com-
manding attention of policy makers differ greatly from one society
to another. For example, if the principal mechanism is the demon-
stration of discontent by violence, then it is clear that a great
many problems which affect individual members of society will not
be dealt with simply because they do not lend themselves to the
staging of violent protest. "Once it has become clear that policy
makers are responsive to threats of violence in one particular
area, such threats will be delivered with increasing frequency"
when it appears that "the State will only help those who make trouble."
2The term "power-capability" is taken from Charles W. Anderson,
Political and Economic Change in Latin America (Princeton, New Jersey:
D. Van Nostrand, 1967), pp. 90-91. Anderson's sections on political
systems, the decision-making process and the administrative process
ate based primarily on the Spanish-speaking countries but much of what
he says is valid for Brazil.

3La Palombara, Interest Groups in Italian Politics, pp. 82-83,
notes: "With rare exceptions even the desperate peasants who forcibly
occupy land, or the workers who refuse to leave factories, tack such
anomic action because of the leadership provided by more than one
[outside] group."

4"Sindicato do crime ainda existed em todo o Nordeste," Jornal
do Brasil (April 6, 1965); "Questao de banditismo e atavica," and
"Como, onde e porque se more em Alagoas," Jornal do Brasil (April


viii









They have happened frequently and they are politically significant.

Traditionally, politics in Brazil were conducted by an upper class

which maintained control and preserved the traditional social order

through a heavy reliance on conciliation, co-optation of new economic

and social groups, and paternalism.2 Peasants, isolated from the

centers of decision-making, saw no real reason to involve them-

selves in politics. Elections had no ideological meaning for them.

On the other hand, voting for the candidates of a "political boss"

(chefe politico or coronel) meant not only political protection from

bandits or hired gunmen (cangaceiros) in the isolated interior where


7, 1965. The articles discuss "political banditry" in the Northeast,
especially Alagoas, and its relationship with the assassination of Luis
Augusto Castro Silva, State Secretary of Public Security, and an at-
tempt on the life of State Deputy Robson Mendes in March, 1965.
Other shootings also marked the July-September 1965 campaign for
Governor.

IBonifacio Fortes, "Contribuicao a hist6ria polrtica do Sergipe
(1933-1954)," Revista Brasileira de Estudos Polfticos, No. 8 (April,
1960), pp. 86-133, indicates that all elections in Sergipe between
1950-1960 were held under Army supervision because of the violence
accompanying previous elections.
Violence as a "legitimate technique" of pressure group activity
is found in many societies. In the United States, for example,
violence has been present in the labor movement and the civil rights
movement. See James W. Vander Zanden, "The Klan Revival," American
Journal of Sociology, Vol. LXV (March, 1960), pp. 456-462. In mid-
1967, H. Rap Brown coined the phrase "violence is as American as
cherry pie."

2James W. Rowe, "The 'Revolution' and the 'System': Notes on
Brazilian Politics," AUFS Reports, East Coast South America Series,
Vol. XII, No. 3 (Brazil), May, 1966, p. 7, indicates the term "o
sistema" was popularized by scholarly journalist Oliveros Ferreira
of 0 Estado de Sao Paulo to describe the remarkable stability of
social structures, informal political institutions, and attitudinal
patterns, and the "joint action by the elites to maintain
control and preserve "social peace." This concept of "system" is
not to be confused with the concepts of general systems analysis as
used in the behavioral sciences.


.Tx









the influence of the central or state government was minimal, but it

also meant jobs and opportunity to rent land or to sell crops to the

men who dominated commerce in the region.1 The political emergence

of peasant groups after 1955 brought about some changes in many of

the traditional or transitional political sub-systems of Brazil.2

The 1964 Revolution apparently ended the "normal" political processes

and activity of many leading politicians, including Juscelino Ku-

bitschek, Joao Belchior Marques Goulart, Janio Quadros, Leonel Bri-

zola, and Francisco Juliao de Arruda Paula. However, many peasant

groups continued to function even though many political leaders were

removed from the system.


1Jean Blondel, As Condicoes da Vida Polrtica No Estado da
Pararba (Rio de Janeiro: Fundaqco Getulio Vargas, 1957), pp. 37-
72, is an excellent discussion of the social, economic, and polit-
ical conditions of not only the state of Paraiba but also of the
Northeast interior where balloting was seldom secret. Marcos Vini-
cius Vilaga and Roberto Cavalcanti de Albuquerque, Coronel, Coron6is
(Rio de Janeiro: Edic6es Tempo Brasileiro, 1965) is a sympathetic
portrait of four Pernambuco twentieth century "bosses" who were
both sources of law and judges of proper social conduct: Francisco
"Chico" Rom5o of Serrita; Jose Albilio de Albuquerque Avila of Bom
Conselho; Francisco "Chico" Heraclio de Rego of Limoeiro; and
Veremundo Soares of Salgueiro.

2Gabriel Almond, "Comparative Political Systems," Journal of
Politics, Vol. XVIII, No. 3 (August, 1956), pp. 391-409; Gabriel
Almond and James S. Coleman, The Politics of the Developing Areas
(Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1960), pp. 540-541, and
Edward C. Banfield, The Moral Basis of a Backward Society (Glencoe,
Illinois: The Free Press, 1958), pp. 85-104, and Max P. Millikin
and Donald L. M. Blackmer (eds.), The Emerging Nations. Their
Growth and United States Policy (Boston: Little, Brown and Company,
1961), pp. 21-26 and 84-90, have been used to create a set of typo-
logies for eleven Brazilian states and Municipios with Pernambuco
and Rio Grande do Sul which are contained in the appendix.









Goals and Hypotheses

This study attempts to do the following:

First, place the pre-1955 social, economic, and political system

in context, especially in the ways it affected large landowners, small

farmers, rural workers, renters, and other groups.

Second, identify some of the participants and groups responsible

for a change in the outputs of the national political system and the

state sub-systemsinsofar as they affected peasants and other groups

with whom they interacted.

This will be done by case studies of the Ligas Camponesas.

Sindicatos of Small Farmers and Rural Workers, and Cooperatives of

Small Farmers in several states to show the relative importance

of population distribution, education, social infrastructure,

leadership availability and style, organizational structure, and

the reaction of other individuals, groups, and institutions to

peasant pressure groups.

In doing this, the validity of several major hypotheses will

be tested:

1. The recently organized activity of peasants is a mixture

of traditional Brazilian means of seeking relief or protection and of

techniques used by pressure groups in all modern societies.

Traditionally, Brazilian peasants have followed those leaders who

provided them with protection and benefits of different types. The

newer peasant pressure groups also have learned to use radio, television,

newspapers and other mass communication media to influence decision

makers.








2. The greater availability of highways, railways, and other

forms of communication within a given region and with other regions

encourages and supports the formation of peasant pressure groups or

other political groups using the peasants as a base or springboard

for their own political or social advancement.

3. Although cooperatives and other associations may originally

have been formed for non-political ends, a principal reason for their

continued existence and/or growth is their ability to resort to polit-

ical action.

4. Peasant pressure groups have survived and functioned in

communities with a social infra-structure containing organized formal

and informal groups and not survived or functioned in those communities

and regions without these groups.

Formal groups include Church organizations, school boards, and

agricultural associations. Informal groups include such institutions

as the mutir5o (cooperative work exchange similar to the barn-raising

or corn-husking bees found in the United States).

5. Leadership of peasant pressure groups will come from outside

the ranks of the peasantry in less-modernized states or regions although

these leaders may have rural origins. In modernized or modernizing

regions, leadership of such groups will be made up of both peasants


1William Kornhauser, The Politics of Mass Society (Glencoe,
Illinois: The Free Press, 1959), and Seymour M. Lipset, Political
Man. the Social Bases of Politics, Anchor Book Edition (Garden City:
Doubleday and Company, 1963), Chapter II, are especially relevant
for their discussion of the roles of intermediate or voluntary
groups in contributing to more pluralistic and less authoritarian
or totalitarian societies.









and other persons of higher status and education. One important corol-

lary is that the nature and origin of these groups will greatly determine

the recruitment of middle and lower level leaders from among the

peasantry or urban middle classes.

In those groups organized by the communists or urban politicians,

few or no peasants will determine policy; in those groups organized by

the Church, priests, ministers, and laymen will play important roles

in making policy.

6. A comprehensive radical or reformist ideology for these peasant

groups will be created by urban intellectuals and not the peasants. The

specific goals and grievances of peasants themselves will not normally

be a part of the comprehensive ideology brought in by outsiders although

these goals and grievances may be included later at a certain stage of

the organizational process.

A radical or revolutionary ideology is one which calls for the

abolition of the social and property structures of society. A reform-

ist ideology seeks changes in the social, economic, and political

structure or society but without abolishing the existing political or

legal system.

7. A peasant pressure group is revolutionary or reform-minded

depending on (a) the motives of the outsiders who ally themselves with

peasants; (b) the conditions under which the help of outsiders is

rendered; and (c) the style and integration of the political sub-system

under which a peasant group operates. In other words, it is necessary

to examine the perceptions of important decision makers and influential


xiii









in the sub-system and the access given newly emerging political and

social groups by decision makers.


Methodology

In order to examine the structures and functions of small farmer

and rural worker groups, and the development of such structures and

functions, the writer reviewed the available published literature at

the libraries of the University of Florida, the Inter-American Regional

Labor Organization (ORIT) in Mexico, and the Inter-American College of

Agriculture and Social Sciences at Turrialba, Costa Rica. He then

conducted brief periods of field research on peasant groups in Mexico,

Costa Rica, Peru, Bolivia, and Argentina prior to pursuing nine months

of field research in Brazil. In conducting this study, he sought to

examine the variables mentioned in the original guiding hypotheses plus

other variables and influences which developed in the course of this

study, and which are discussed in the concluding chapter.

The writer sought to identify those factors which were important

to the survival and effectiveness of these pressure groups. In particular,

the writer based many of his research techniques on the previous work

on interest groups and intermediate voluntary groups by David Truman,

Joseph La Palombara, Gabriel Almond, Robert Alexander, Willian Kornhauser,


Henry A. Landsberger, "The Labor Elite: Is it Revolutionary?" in
Lipset and Solari, op. cit,, pp. 268-269, notes the "organized pressure
through economic and/or political channels" of a large sector of society
to "improve its living and working conditions" for the first time, "in
itself constitutes a revolution." See also Lipset, Political Man, pp.
77-90, for his discussion of the "ways in which different societies
handle the crisis of the 'entry into politics' of new social groups."


xiv









and Seymour Lipset, which have been referred to above. In addition,

the writer utilized the lessons learned in studying monolithic local

power elites in the work of Floyd Hunter, the work by Robert Dahl2

on pluralistic power structures in which specialized groups influenced

local government decisions and activities in specific issue areas, and

the work by Gladys Kammerer, John DeGrove, Alfred Clubok, and Charles

Ferris3 on competitive cliques in Florida cities. A mimeographed

interview schedule was developed with structured closed end and un-

structured open ended questions in order to gather background data on

the political influentials and problems involved in this study. This

formal interview schedule was discarded, however, because of the general

reluctance of Brazilians to respond to written questionnaires. Instead,

other techniques were used to gain interviewee confidence and to elicit

the information for which the interview schedule originally was

designed (see pp. 275-278). Over the course of time, information was

sought on the age, education, birthplace, religion, occupational history,

organizational experiences, and power relationships.

The writer determined fairly early in his research that the federal

system of Brazilian government might be an important contributing factor

in determining the relative importance of different variables in dif-

ferent settings. He therefore decided to select a few sample states


Floyd Hunter, Community Power Structure (Garden City: Anchor
Books, Doubleday and Company, 1963).

2Robert A. Dahl, Who Governs? Democracy and Power in an American
Cjit (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1961).

3Gladys M. Kammerer, et al., City Managers in Politics (University
Monographs in the Social Sciences, No. 13) (Gainesville: University of
Florida Press, 1962).








and municiPios in each region and also to spend as much time as possible

in rural areas because of the great quantity of published material in

Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo on political conditions and "peasant

groups" in Pernambuco and the relative lack of material on other states

such as Rio Grande do Norte, Parana, Sao Paulo, and Rio Grande do Sul.

Several municipios were selected in six states on the basis of their

similar and differing characteristics such as area, population, colon-

ization and/or settlement processes, ethnic, religious, and economic

make-up, literacy, and the existence or absence of functioning pressure

groups and political parties. Although the writer was not able to fol-

low his original schedule of travel for various reasons, he utilized

his time as follows:

Rio Grande do Sul (three months, principally in Porto Alegre,
Caxias do Sul, Gramado, Nova Petr6polis, Santa Cruz do Sul,
Venancio Aires, Santa Marfa, and Lajeado)
Sao Paulo (one month, principally in Sao Paulo, Jabotfcabal,
and Bragan9a Paulista)
Guanabara and the State of Rio de Janeiro (one month)
Bahia (one week at a meeting of the National Executive Council
of Catholic Agrarian Youth (JAC) at Itaparlca Island, plus
three days in nearby Salvador)
Pernambuco (two months, principally in Recife, Jaboatao, Vitoria
de Santo Antao, Bom Jardim, Cabo, Palmares, and Afogados de
Ingazeira
Parafba (two weeks, principally in Joao Pessoa)
Alagoas (ten days, principally in Colonia Pindorama, near Penedo)
Rio Grande do Norte (ten days, principally in Natal and Sao
Paulo Potengf)

The writer sought to determine political party and pressure group

power structures and relations with other power holders by interviewing

formal power holders and knowledgeable in sindicatos, federations, co-

operatives, political parties, churches, newspapers, Ministries, Army

Headquarters, landowner associations, universities, urban trade unions,








and the catalytic organizations such as SAR, SORPE, and FAG, and by at-

tempting to identify the major participants in certain selected critical

decisions. (The names of these influentials and knowledgeable are

listed in the bibliography.) The writer also collected information on

several elections in order to make possible correlations between voting

and pressure group behavior. After his return to the United States,

a reading of James L. Payne's Labor and Politics in Peru and several

Brazilian novels helped give the writer a conceptual framework in which

to place the role of the structured violence he had observed in many

parts of Brazil. And finally he prepared numerous tables, maps, and

charts, many of which are contained in this study in order to test the

validity of the hypotheses in this study.

All interviews were conducted by the writer in Portuguese or

Japanese with the exception of several interviews with Americans in

English and several German-speaking persons in Rio Grande do Sul in

which Emiliano Lemberger was of help in interpreting answers to

questions.

All translations are by the author unless otherwise stated.


Special Acknowledgments

This study could not have been made without the help of many small

farmers, rural laborers, sharecroppers, priests, ministers, professors,

students, lawyers, and agricultural extension agents who shared their

knowledge, experience, and, on occasion, homes with the writer. The

following were especially helpful.

1. Dr. Jose Arthur Rios, Director of the Sociedade de Pesquisas

e Planejamento and the Instituto de Estudos para o Desenvolvimento Social

xvii










e Economico, Rio de Janeiro, his secretary Dona CSndida, and office as-

sistant, Senhor Damigo, who allowed the writer to use their office in

Rio de Janeiro. Dr. Rios, a former Visiting Professor of Sociology

at the University of Florida, was most helpful in providing contacts

with many informants who were valuable sources of information.

2. Dr. Jose Vicente Freitas Marcondes, Superintendent of the

Institute Cultural do Trabalho (Labor Culture Institute or ICT) of Sao

Paulo, another former Visiting Professor of Sociology at the University

of Florida, who allowed the use of the ICT's facilities and provided

data on urban and rural labor leaders taking ICT courses. Dr. Freitas

Marcondes also was of great help in providing information on the

development of Brazilian labor and social legislation.

3. Dona Lucia de Sa Barreto, special assistant to Padre Paulo

Crespo, whose cheer and knowledge of the intricacies of the peasant

movement in the Northeast are truly remarkable.

4. Sam Shapiro and Jack Lieboff, Assistant Labor Attaches in

the United States Embassy in Rio de Janeiro and in the Consulate

General of Sao Paulo.

5. John Snyder, regional representative of the Postal, Telegraph,

and Telephone Workers International in Rio de Janeiro, who gave the

writer access to newspaper articles on peasant and labor organizations

collected by the Lux-Jornal clipping service. The members of his

staff, Donas Regina, Alicia and Delia Montesinos were'almost most cooper

7`


N


xvi i i


ative


J









6. Timothy Hogan, Northeast Brazil representative of the

Cooperative League of the United States in 1963-1965, who permitted

the writer to use his newspaper file on the Northeast.

7. Arthur Lopez, Northeast Brazil representative of the

American Institute of Free Labor Development in 1964-1965, for

the use of his offices and files in Recife.

8. Miss Cynthia Hewitt, a graduate student at the Institute

of Latin American Affairs, Columbia University, who spent the

summer of 1965 doing research in Pernambuco and who accompanied

the writer on several delightful trips into the backlands.

9. My mother, Mrs. Bastiana J. Pearson.

10. The Veterans Administration which helped with a loan in

the fall of 1965.

11. Dr. Harry Kantor, Professor of Political Science at the

University of Florida, whose "friendly persistence and harassment"

to finish this project is highly appreciated by the writer and his wife.

12. My wife Jeanette (Jaye) and Mrs. Celia Lescano for the many

hours spent typing the draft and manuscript.

Although many persons were helpful in supplying facts and inter-

pretations a11 the conclusions and opinions in this study are my own.


xix












TABLE OF CONTENTS


Page


PREFACE ............

LIST OF TABLES . . .

LIST OF FIGURES . ...

GLOSSARY OF ABBREVIATIONS FOR INTEREST GROUPS, GOVERNMENT
AGENCIES, AND POLITICAL PARTIES IN BRAZIL .

GLOSSARY OF FOREIGN TERMS AND PHRASES .. ........

CHAPTER


I. AGRICULTURE AND AGRICULTURAL LABOR IN ITS HISTORI-
CAL,ECONOMIC, AND SOCIAL SETTING IN BRAZIL .

II. THE POLITICAL SYSTEM WITHIN WHICH RURAL PRESSURE
GROUPS FUNCTION . .

III. THE BIG LANDOWNER PRESSURE GROUPS AND NON-AGRI-
CULTURAL FORCES AFFECTING AGRICULTURAL AND
PEASANT POLICIES . .

IV. THE LIGAS CAMPONESAS AS A PRESSURE GROUP .

V. THE IMPACT OF THE CHURCH-SPONSORED LITERACY MOVEMENTS
AND PRESSURE GROUPS IN THE NORTH AND NORTHEAST

VI. CHANGES IN THE POLITICAL PARTICIPATION OF SMALL
FARMERS AND RURAL WORKERS IN THE SOUTH .

VII. ORGANIZATION AND CHARACTERISTICS OF THE NATIONAL,
STATE, AND LOCAL LEADERSHIP OF BRAZILIAN
PEASANT GROUPS . . .

VIII. CONCLUSIONS . . .

APPENDIX

1. MANIFESTO OF THE MOVEMENT OF LANDLESS AGRICULTORS
(MASTER), APRIL, 1960 . .


xxi i

xxv


xxix

xxxii.i


1


45



62

89 V


144


204



263

297




340








TABLE OF CONTENTS (cont.)


APPENDIX Page

2. STATUTES OF THE "MOVEMENT OF LANDLESS AGRICULTORS,"
APRIL, 1960 . . 342

3. THE DIRECTORY OF OFFICERS OF THE CONFEDERATION OF
AGRICULTURAL WORKERS (CONTAG) ELECTED APRIL 14,
1965, RIO DE JANEIRO, GUANABARA, BRASIL 345

BIBLIOGRAPHY . . .. .. 347












LIST OF TABLES


Table Page

1. NUMBER AND AREA OF FARM ESTABLISHMENTS ACCORDING TO
SIZE 1950 .. . 8

2. DISTRIBUTION OF TiACTORS AND PLOWS ACCORDING TO PRE-
LIMINARY RESULTS, AGRICULTURAL CENSUS, SEPTEMBER 1,
1960, SELECTED STATES ......... 9

3. PRICES OF SELECTED CONSUMER GOODS IN REPRESENTATIVE
COMPANY STORES, PUBLIC MARKETS, AND A PEASANT CO-
OPERATIVE, PERNAMBUCO, JULY, 1965 . 18

4. DIFFERENCES IN WAGES PAID VARIOUS TYPES OF WORKERS AND
LEGAL MINIMUM WAGES, FOR SPECIFIED STATES, 1957 19

5. MEMBERSHIP IN VOLUNTARY ASSOCIATIONS, 1959 ... 26

6. INDICATORS OF FUNCTIONAL LITERACY AND POLITICAL
DEVELOPMENT IN BRAZIL EXPRESSED IN NEWSPAPER CIRCU-
LATION AND HOSPITAL AVAILABILITY, 1959 .. 29

7. A COMPARISON OF SCHOOL FACILITIES, TEACHERS, AND DAILY
ATTENDANCE IN RIO GRANDE DO SUL MUNICIPIOS DE SANTA
CRUZ DO SUL AND VENANCIO AIRES WITH THE PERNAMBUCO
MUNICIPIO OF JABOATAO, SELECTED YEARS, 1938-1964 33

8. NATIONAL ORIGINS OF MEMBERS OF THE STATE ASSEMBLIES
AND FEDERAL DEPUTIES, SELECTED BRAZILIAN STATES,
1963-1965, COMPARED TO IMMIGRATION TO BRAZIL,
1884-1957 (PERCENTAGES) . 36

9. SUGAR ENGENHOS WITH SLAVES IN 1881, AND RURAL SINDI-
CATOS IN CEARA, DECEMBER, 1963 . 191

10. PLURALITIES FOR PTB CANDIDATES FOR STATE AND FEDERAL
DEPUTY COMPARED TO MUNICIPIOS WITH MASTER GROUPS,
OCTOBER 7, 1962 . . 222

11. DISTRIBUTION OF. MASTER GROUPS IN RIO GRANDE DO .SUL, BY
SIZE OF MUNICIPIO AND SIZE OF FARM ESTABLISHMENTS,
1961-1964 ........... .. 224


.xxO i








LIST OF TABLES (cont.)


Table Page

12. DELEGATES TO THE SECOND (JULY, 1963) AND THIRD (JANUARY
1965) FAG CONGRESSES, BY DIOCESE, MUNICIPIO, AND
SECTION .... *. *.. 231

13. OCCUPATIONS OF DELEGATES TO THIRD FAG CONGRESS, PORTO
ALEGRE, JANUARY 15-17, 1965 . 235

14. SINDICATO ORGANIZATION IN RIO GRANDE DO SUL BY THE FAG
AND MASTER, 1961-1965 .. 237

15. ACTIVELY ORGANIZED OR FUNCTIONING FAG AND MASTER GROUPS
BY MUNICIPIOS ACCORDING TO THE SIZE OF FARM ESTAB-
LISHMENTS, 1961-1964 . 238

16. SUCCESS OF THE FAG AND MASTER IN ORGANIZING RURAL SIN-
DICATOS WHICH WERE FUNCTIONING IN APRIL, 1965, BY
MUNICIPIO, ACCORDING TO THE SIZE OF FARM ESTABLISH-
MENTS .. ....... ... 239

17. THE CHRONOLOGICAL ORGANIZATION OF RURAL SINDICATOS BY
THE WORKERS' CIRCLE (CO) MOVEMENT IN SAO PAULO,
1961-1962 . ... 252

18. RECOGNIZED AND UNRECOGNIZED RURAL SINDICATOS, 1963-
1965 ................ .... 257

19. BACKGROUND CHARACTERISTICS OF DELEGATES TO THE FIRST
PEASANT CONGRESS, BELO HORIZONTE, NOVEMBER, 1961,
AND INFLUENTIALS IN THREE SOUTHERN AND THREE NORTH-
EASTERN STATES, NOVEMBER 1964-AUGUST 1965 .. 279

20. BACKGROUND CHARACTERISTICS OF DELEGATES TO THE FIRST
PEASANT CONGRESS, BELO HORIZONTE, NOVEMBER, 1961,
AND RURAL WORKER LEADERS IN ICT TRAINING COURSES IN
SAO PAULO (1963-1965) AND RECIFE, PERNAMBUCO (MARCH
22-APRIL 15, 1965) . ...... 282

21. PERCEPTIONS OF THE DIFFICULTIES FACED BY PEASANT
HOMEM DO CAMPO) AMONG DELEGATES TO THE FIRST RURAL
WORKERS CONGRESS, NOVEMBER, 1962 . 318

22. CATEGORIES OF IMPORTANCE OF THE DIFFICULTIES FACED BY
THE PEASANT AS PERCEIVED BY DELEGATES TO THE FIRST
RURAL WORKERS CONGRESS, NOVEMBER, 1962, BY RELA-
TIONSHIP TO THEIR LAND HOLDINGS OR OCCUPATION 319


xxi ii









LIST OF TABLES (cont.)


Table Page

23, CATEGORIES OF IMPORTANCE OF THE DIFFICULTIES FACED BY
THE PEASANT AS PERCEIVED BY DELEGATES TO THE FIRST
RURAL WORKERS CONGRESS, NOVEMBER, 1962, BY REGION
FROM WHICH THE DELEGATES CAME, IN PERCENTAGES 320

24. PERCEPTIONS OF WHAT COULD BE DONE TO TRANSFORM THE
COUNTRYSIDE BY DELEGATES TO THE FIRST RURAL WORKERS
CONGRESS, NOVEMBER, 1962, BY OCCUPATIONAL CATEGORY
AND PERCENTAGES .................. 321

25. PEASANT SINDICATOS IN SELECTED STATES BY SIZE OF MUNI-
CIPIOS, 1965 . . 336

26. RECOGNITION OF PEASANT SINDICATOS BY LABOR MINISTERS
DURING THE GOULART REGIME, SEPTEMBER 8, 1961-
DECEMBER 31, 1963 . ... 337


xxI V











LIST OF FIGURES


Figure Page

1. Political Map of Brazil, showing places visited in
this study, 1964-1965. ............ ,xli

2. A "temporary" one year old hut of squatters, Colonia
Pindorama, near Penedo, Alagoas, July 14, 1965 12

3. A "traditional" sugar plantation between Macei6 and Pe-
nedo, Alagoas, July, 1965. On the left, a chapel;
in the center, the Casa Grande; on the right, the sugar
mill; and scattered about are other smaller buildings
housing workers or livestock ....... 12

4. Engenho Bento Velho, Municipio of Vitoria de Santo
Antao, Pernambuco, near the paved highway between
Recife and Vitoria de Santo Antao. Engenho Galileia
is about one-half mile to the right over a dirt road.
An administrator manages Bento Velho for Usina
Bulhoes . ... ... 13

5. A "barracao" or "company store" operated by a Senhor de
Engenho on the dirt highway between Goiana and Tambe,
Pernambuco. Second from the left is Joao Jordao da
Silva, Treasurer of the Federation of Rural Workers of
the State of Pernambuco, July 2, 1965. .. 13

6. The homes of sugar plantation workers lining one of the
roads leading out of Ribeirao Preto, Pernambuco, July
19, 1965.. ... .. .. .... 14

7. One of several barracks-style homes for the families of
workers, Engenho Gallo, District of Xexeu, Municipio
of Agua Preta, Pernambuco, July 10, 1965. The En-
genho belongs to the family of Senator Francisco
Pessoa de Queiroz, also a major stockholder in Jornal
do Comercio, a radio station, and two television
stations . ... 14

8. The town house of a traditional cattle rancher (estan-
ciero), Pelotas, Rio Grande do Sul, February 27, 1967 31

9. From left to right: the rural school-and-home of Ladyr
Rech, President of the FAG Regional Department, a
neighborhood or community recreation center under
construction, Fazenda Souza zone, District of Ana


xxv








LIST OF FIGURES (cont.)


Figure Page

Rech, Municipio of Caxias do Sul, Rio Grande do
Sul, February 7, 1965 .......... 31

10. Widespread property distribution (95 per cent or
more of farm properties are less than 100 hectares)
leads- to a greater distribution of medical and
public health facilities, Rio Grande do Sul, 1960 39

11. Francisco Juliao addressing a meeting at Engenho
Galileia, Vitoria de Santo Antao, Pernambuco 96

12. An example of Juliao's use of Fidel Castro as a
Symbol. Photograph of a political rally in
Recife, Pernambuco, following the unsuccessful
Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961. The portrait of
the Cuban leader is by Abelardo da Hora, a
"Revolutionary artist." . 98

13. The Casa Grande, Engenho Galileia, Municipio of
Vitoria de Santo Antao, Pernambuco, July 7, 1965.
Members of the first Peasant League converted the
house into a school, teachers did not want to com-
mute to or live in the countryside to teach
peasants . ... .... 102

14. -iLooking down from the porch of the Casa Grande-
school, Engenho Galileia, toward the hills in which
the Engenho is located. Patches of sugar cane and
bananas may be seen in the background 102

15. "Politically Inspired Invasions or Not?" Pictures
of squatters in the Municipios of Itaguai and
Duque de Caxias, State of Rio de Janeiro (August-
September, 1961) . . 112

16. Location of Peasant Sindicatos in Rio Grande do
Norte, 1965 . . 122

17. Location of Peasant Leagues in Paraiba, 1960-1964 127

18. Location of Peasant Leagues in Pernambuco, 1960-1964 135

19. Bishop Dom Francisco Mezquita and four organizers of
the SORPE-sponsored Sindicato and Cooperative of
Rural Workers of Palmares, Pernambuco, once
Brazil's biggest peasant sindicato--covering 32


xxvi








LIST OF FIGURES (cont.)


Figure Page

municipios--and controlled by Gregorio Bezerra,
a Communist, from 1962-1964. The picture was
taken July 29, 1965 ............. 145

20. Rural workers waiting to receive spaghetti and
dried milk from the Food for Peace program
sponsored jointly by SORPE, USAID, and the AFL-
CIO, Sindicato of Rural Workers, Vitoria de
Santo Antao, June, 1965 ......... ... 145

21. The Municipal Plaza on Market Day, Bom Jardim,
Pernambuco, July 23, 1965, following a mild
rain storm. Peasant League organizer and Deputy
Francisco Juliao was born in this municipio 146

22. Pedro de Silva, President of the Sindicato and Co-
operative of Rural Workers, Bom Jardim, Pernam-
buco, addressing members to discuss formation of
the cooperative sponsored by SORPE, July 23,
1965. Other officers are seated behind Silva 146

23. Members of the Cooperative of Rural Workers of Bom
Jardim, Pernambuco, listening to a talk on Co-
operative principles and organization, July 23,
1965. The meeting is being held in a private
school for girls operated by Roman Catholic nuns 147

24. Acacio Fernandes dos Santos, Treasurer and Tociyuki
Takaki, Secretary, of the Federation of Rural
Workers of the State of Rio de Janeiro, visit
squatters in the Municipio of Mage, April 9,
1965. The truck in the background belongs to one
of the Japanese-Brazilian squatters who has a highly
productive plot of land on property reportedly
claimed by Fazendas Americanas, a Sao Paulo business
firm . . .... 147

25. One of the principal streets of Punto dos Carvalhos,
15 miles south of Recife on the road to Cabo,
August, 1965. On the left is the Sindicato of
Rural Workers and a nurse (in white), employed
by the Sindicato to treat the illnesses of members 148

26. Members of the Sindicato of Punto dos Carvalhos enjoy
showing off some of the dental equipment purchased
with Imposto Sindical funds, August 1965. Fourth


xxv i i*








LIST OF FIGURES (cont.)


Figure Page

from the left is one of several university
students helping Padre Ant^onio Mello administer
the sindicato ..... ............. 148

27. Groups Struggling to Control Pernambuco Peasant Sin-
dicatos, 1963-1964 .. . ... 167

28. Location of Peasant Sindicatos in Eastern Parafba 186

29. Location of Peasant Sindicatos in Cear ...... 188

30. Small farmer proprietors, members of a "hunting" or
"shooting club" parade through the streets of Nova
Petropolis, Rio Grande do Sul, celebrating the
100th anniversary of its founding, September 7,
1858. In 1902, Padre Teodoro Amstadt of the nearby
village of Linha Imperial founded the first Credit
Cooperative in Brazil for small farmers ... 259

31. Home and family of Zulmiro Boff, President of the Sin-
dicato of Small Farmers, Caxias do Sul, Rio Grande
do Sul, April 22, 1965. In the background to the
left is a grape arbor from which he earns his
living . ......... 259

32. Delegates to the Third Congress of the Frente Agrario
Gaucho (FAG), the Pontifical Catholic University,
Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, January 18, 1965 285


xxvi i i












GLOSSARY OF ABBREVIATIONS FOR INTEREST
GROUPS, GOVERNMENT AGENCIES, AND
POLITICAL PARTIES IN BRAZIL


A9ao Popular Popular Action, a Catholic Action group of the 1960's.

ARENA National Renovating Alliance or Alianga Renovadora Nacional
Note-The pro-government political party organized from the
top down in late 1965 out of members from the previously
existing political parties which were abolished by Institu-
tional Act No. 2 of October 2, 1965. See MDB also.

CLT The Consolidated Work Laws or Consolidagao das Leis do Trabalho,
promulgated by the government of Getulio Vargas as Decree-law
5,452 of May 1, 1943, which is still the basic labor code or law
of Brazil.

CRB Brazilian Rural Confederation or Confederagao Rural Brasileira,
the organization at the apex of the pyramid of rural landowner
groups in Brazil; below it are the Rural Federations (Federacoes
Rurais) of the individual states which consist of the Rural As-
sociations in one or more Municipios.

CONTAG The Confederation of Agricultural Workers or Confederagao
de Trabalhadores na Agricultura, formed December 1963.

DRT Regional Labor Delegate or Delegacy; the DRT is the Chief Re-
presentative of the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare in
each State or a group of States.

FAG Gaucho Agrarian Front or Frente Agraria Gaucho; the interest
group sponsored by Catholic church leaders in Rio Grande do
Sul.

FARBA The Rural Federation of the state of Bahia.

FARESP The Rural Federatio of Sao Paulo

FARSUP The Rural Federation of Rio Grande do Sul

IAA The Sugar and Alcohol Institute or Instituto do Aqucar e Alcool,
a government autarchy or agency designed to regulate the production
and sale of sugar and alcoholic products produced from sugar.

IBRA The Brazilian Institute of Agrarian Reform or Instituto Bra-
sileiro de Reforma Agraria, organized from the SUPRA and several
other agrarian reform and development agencies in 1964.


xxix










IGRA The Gaucho Agrarian Reform Institute or Instituto Gaucho de
Reforma Agraria, established in 1960 by the state government
of Rio Grande do Sul.

IRGA The Rice Growers Association of Rio Grande do Sul or Instituto
Rio Grandense de Arroz, a producers interest group.

JAC Catholic Rural (Agrarian) Youth or Juventude Agraria Catolica,
the arm of Catholic Action among rural youth.

JUC Catholic University Youth, the arm of Catholic Action among
University students.

MASTER Movement of Landless Agricultural Laborers or Movimento dos
Agricultores Sem Terra in Rio Grande do Sul.

MDB Brazilian Democratic Movement or Movimento Democratico Brasileiro,
the opposition political party formed in late 1965 when
previously existing political parties were abolished.

MRT Movimento Trabalhista Renovador. Renovating Workers Movement or
Movimento Trabalhista Renovador, the political party founded by
Fernando Ferrari of Rio Grande do Sul, when he broke with PTB
leader Joao Belchor Goulart.

MTR Movimento Tiradente Revolucionario. Revolutionary Tiradente
Movement or Movimento Tiradentes Revolucionario, an urban polit-
ical movement founded by Francisco Juliao in 1961.

MEB Basic Education Movement or Movimento de Educacao de Base, a
Catholic Church-sponsored and Brazilian Government financed
organization involved in literacy campaigns and leadership
training.

MTPS The Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare.

PCB The Brazilian Communist Party which split in late 1961, over the
Sino-Soviet dispute and the Cuban Revolution. This group is pro-
Moscow and led by Luiz Carlos Prestes, a man with considerable
prestige due his leadership of the famous insurrectionary
"Prestes Column" in the interior of Brazil in the 1920's after
he and a group of fellow junior officers (tenentes) attempted
a coup d'etat.

PCdoB The Communist Party of Brazil, the Peking-oriented faction of
the Communist Party led by Joao Amazonas, Pedro Pomar, and Mau-
ricio Gabrois, all of whom had been downgraded for being
"Stalinists" after the Twentieth Congress of the Russian Com-
munist Party.


xxx









PDC Christian Democratic Party--of minor importance nationally but
important in several states, including Sao Paulo, Parana, and
Rio Grande do Sul.

PR The Republican Party, an unimportant minor party with an electoral
apparatus "for rent."

PRP Party of Popular Representation, a far-right party of some
importance because of its ideological coherence.

PSB Brazilian Socialist Party or Partido Socialista Brasileiro, a
minor party which had its roots in the UDN and PTB but was
personalistic and interested in patronage, not ideological co-
herence and discipline.

PSD Social Democratic Party or Partido Social Democratico, one of
Brazil's three major parties from 1945 to 1965, created out of
a coalition of traditional rural oligarchs, state-machine
politicians, bureaucrats from the Estado Novo period, and a
smattering of industrial nouveaux riches.

PTB Brazilian Labor Party, or Partido Trabalhista Brasileiro, one
of Brazil's three major parties, 1945-1965, based on a coali-
tion of Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare bureaucrats,
middle-class trade union leaders, large ranchers from the
South such as Joao Goulart and Leonel Brizola, and sugar
interests in the Northeast and Sao Paulo, represented by people
like Jose Ermirio de Morals.

SRB Brazilian Rural Society or Sociedade Rural Brasileira, a civil
association which aggregates Brazil's largest landowners,
important coffee and cotton exporters, and livestock producers.
It does not have any constituent bodies in the several states
or municipios. Its headquarters is Sao Paulo.

SUDENE The Northeast Development Agency or Superintendencia do
Desenvolvimento do Nordeste.

SUPRA The Superintendency of Agrarian Reform or Superintendencia de
Reforma Agraria, organized in 1963 out of the National Insti-
tute for Immigration and Colonization (INIC), the Rural Social
Service (SSR) and several other previously existing rural
development or welfare agencies. It was re-organized into the
IBRA in 1964 after the April 1964 change of government.

UBES The Brazilian Secondary Student Union or Uniao Brasileira de
Estudantes Secondarias, the organization at the apex of the
puramid of secondary student organizations.


xxxi









ULTAB The Brazilian Union of Agricultural Laborers and Workers or
Uniao dos Lavradores e Trabalhadores Agricolas do Brasil, a
PCB-dominated organization of peasants, functioning principally
in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo states from 1954 to April 1964.
It is now defunct.

UDN National Democratic Union, one of Brazil's three major parties,
1945-1965, originally an anti-Vargas "united front" of urban
middle class, professionals, banking interests, moralists, intel-
lectual liberals and moderates, and a part of the traditional
agricultural interests in the North and Northeast. It also had
some clergymen and labor leaders in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.

UNE National Student Union or Uniao Nacional de Estudantes, the apex
organization of the pyramid of Brazilian University students,
composed of representatives of State Federations or Unions,
which, in turn, were made up of representatives in each School
or College (Faculdade) forming part of a University.


xxxii












GLOSSARY OF FOREIGN TERMS AND PHRASES


(The definitions and explanations given are those which have a direct
relation to matters treated in the text. Some of the words and phrases
have other connotations as well, but no attempt has been made to in-
clude them. If a word does not have a general public meaning, the
definition used is from a glossary of terms given in Smith, Brazil,
pp. 626-640.)

Agregado--in colonial times a free man of low social status who placed
himself under the protection of the master of the casa grande or
the mansion that formed the seat of a large estate, thus becoming
one of his "men" or retainers; used now in parts of Brazil as a
designation for an agricultural laborer who lives on the estate
(see Engenho, Fazenda, and Usina).

Agreste--the name used in northeastern Brazil to designate the zone
which lies between the well-watered coastal plain (mata or varzea)
and the semi-arid interior (sertio or backlands); much of it is
hilly, rocky, and covered by scattered, scrubby timber or spiny
vegetation known as catinqa.

Associacao--association, the name used for various organized groups,
who may or may not be formally inscribed in the Civil Registry
in accordance with Brazilian Law which prescribes such registra-
tion in order for a group to be recognized by public officials.

caboclo--name first applied to domesticated Indians, later used to
designate a crossbreed of white-indian stock, and now generally
used to mean any lower-class rural person, often with connota-
tions of ignorance such as "hay seed" or "hillbilly." (see caipira)

cachaga--a low-grade rum made from the juice of sugar cane or molasses.

ca'ipira--the man or woman who lives outside of an urban community, who
lacks education or social graces, who does not dress well or present
a good appearance in public. It is a widely used term for lower
class, rural Brazilians along with caboclo.

Camara--Council or Chamber, generally used to describe the legislative
council in the municipio made up of vereadores, councilmen; also
used to describe Chamber of Commerce (Camara de Comercio).

cambao--the obligation imposed on sharecroppers, tenants, and resident
workers (moradores) to work gratuitously or at lower than the
normal wage one or more days per week, or per month, in order to
cultivate a plot of land for oneself; it may also allow an
individual and his family to occupy a dwelling on the plot of
land. It is a term used mostly in the Northeast.


xxx i i









campanha--the name used in southern Brazil to designate the plains of
Rio Grande do Sul, running from the Atlantic Ocean into Uruguay
and Argentina. It is principally a region of cattle ranches and
rice plantations near rivers.

campones--peasant, a rural inhabitant, generally with connotations of
low status.

capanga-cangaceiro--terms used for the bad men or bandits of the North-
east; it is also used for hired guard or gunmen who have been hired
for the purpose of intimidating or killing one or more people.

casa grande--the big house or mansion that forms the seat of a large
landed estate (see engenho, fazenda, estancia, and usina). On very
old estates, there was also a senzala (slave quarters) and engenho.

colonia--a name used to describe a settlement of small farmers in South
Brazil, the workers' village on a fazenda in central Brazil, or the
region settled by small farmers in south Brazil.

colono--a small farmer in south Brazil; a laborer who obligates him-
self to work on a one-year contract in the care and obligatory
harvest of a certain number of coffee trees or of a certain area
of cotton or of other crops such as sugar cane, rice, and beans
in Sao Paulo.

Coronel--colonel, a political boss in a municipio or region of a state;
it is often used synonymously for a large landowner who is active
in politics or who has political connections similar to the
Kentucky Colonel or Tennessee Major.

Cruzeiro--the unit of exchange in Brazil.

Dom--a religious honorific given generally to Bishops and Archbishops
of the Brazilian Catholic Church.

Dispositivo--the name given to the military security arrangements
upon which any government depends.

engenho--an old-fashioned sugar mill; also used to designate the
entire sugar plantation.

erva-mate (yerba mate)--llex paraguariensis, the leaves of a tree of
low to medium height which grows in the south and from which
tea, sometimes called Paraguayan tea, is made.

Estado Novo--the "new state" established by President Getulio Vargas
in 1937 and which was terminated in 1945. It was modelled in
part on the Corporate State of Italy during the regime of Benito
Mussolini.


xxxiv









estancia--the common designation for the large cattle ranch of Rio
Grande do Sul or any large landed estate of that state, Uruguay,
and Argentina; similar in origins and social arrangements to the
fazenda or hacienda.

fazenda--a large estate; the equivalent of hacienda in Mexico, Colom-
bia, and Peru.

fazendeiro--the owner-operator of a large landed estate.

feira--public market; the weekly fair of a neighborhood or region
where people gather to buy, sell, and exchange goods, services,
animals, and entertainment.

foice--the hook or cutting blade attached to a long wooden handle and
generally used for cutting sugar cane or fruit from trees.

foreiro--synonym for morador or resident worker on a landed estate
who generally has to pay foro (a type of rent or cambao) similar
to cambao or pay in kind for the privilege of cultivating or
working a piece of land.

fornecedor--sugar-cane producers who lack milling facilities and must
sell their sugar cane to a sugar usina.

gaucho--a native of Rio Grande do Sul.

hectare--a metric measure equal to 10,000 square meters or 2.471
acres.

Impasto Sindical--the Union Tax imposed on all wage- and salary-
earners (established by the Estado Novo at one day's pay per
year) for supporting an officially arranged system of sindicatos,
federations and confederations.

Interventor--The chief executive of a state, municipio, government
agency or Sindicato appointed by the President as his direct
agent. During the Vargas period, all states were governed by
such appointees, although the appointee in Minas Gerais, an
exception, was known as "Governor."

Irmnao--a religious brother or clergyman belonging to an order.

jagunco--name applied to the gunmen or the bad men of the Sertao
or backlands (see also capanga and cangaceiro).

latifundio--a latifundium, or a large landed estate giving employment
to over 12 workers and much of which may not be farmed at present
levels of technology, often held for speculation or status, and
whose workers may be under-employed or unemployed significant
portions of time during the year.


xxxv










ligas camponesas--peasant leagues, the peasant organizations general-
ly associated with Francisco Juliao de Arruda de Paula of Pernam-
buco but sometimes the title assumed by a traditional landowning
coronel for himself and his peasant following in the 1960-1964
period; originally it was given to the abortive attempt of the
Communist Party (PCB) to organize peasant groups in 1940-1945.

mata--the well-watered coastal plain of Northeast Brazil which is used
principally for growing sugar-cane; in Parafba, it is called the
varzea.

meieiro--an agricultural laborer who receives one-half of the crop in
lieu of wages, or a farm tenant/sharecropper who pays one-half of
his product crop as rent. A sharecropper who paid one-third of
his product would be known as a terceiro.

mineiro--a native of Minas Gerais.

minifundio--a farm of a size inadequate to give full, year-round em-
ployment at present levels of technology and resources to two
people. Generally this writer considers thirty hectares (seventy-
two acres) or less as being the upper level of which a single head
of household would move from minifundio category to family-farm
status, although a small farm of twenty hectares which was well-
irrigated and close to a market center might give its owner a
reasonably good level of living.

morador--a squatter who stops where he pleases and clears the land
in order to plant subsistence crops such as corn, beans, and
mandioca; also used in Northeast Brazil to designate a resident
worker who cultivates a plot of land in return for a share of
the product or a wage.

municipio--an administrative subdivision of the state comparable to
the county in the United States which consists of a both urban
and rural areas. A city is the seat (sede) of the municipio.
Cities as such have no separate legal or political status as in
the United States. Its executive head is a Prefeito (prefect)
and its legislative body is a Camara de Vereadores (chamber of
councilmen).

nordestino--a native of northeastern Brazil.

operarios--skilled workers, generally found in a factory but also
including such workers as railroad men.

"0 sistema"--"the system," a term not to be confused with the concepts
of general systems analysis used in the behavioral sciences, but
denoting the several elites which have dominated Brazilian polit-
ical machinery during several successive governments and their
patterns of joint action to maintain control and preserve "social


xxxvi









peace" through heavy reliance on conciliation, paternalism, and
anticipation of the demands of new individuals or groups seek-
ing admittance into the decision-making processes of various
levels of government.

padre--priest

panelinha--the kinship or informal social structure which generally
consists of a large landowner, a customs official, an insurance
man, a lawyer or two, businessmen, an accountant, a municipio
vereador, a state or federal deputy, and a banker with his
bank. Each one mutually needs the services of the others in order
to overcome various complications of the legal, political, or
economic "system" or "sub-system" in which they find themselves.

passeata--a name used for a parade by which its organizer hopes to
impress political office- or power-holders and the general public
with his power-capabilities, be it in terms of worker, peasant,
or student followers, or any combination of people, trucks,
weapons, and so forth.

pau-a-pique--a type of construction in which poles are place on end,
sometimes with reeds or other shrubber intertwined horizontally
and with adobe covering, used to make the walls of the poorest
huts, generally constructed by moradores or posseiros (squatters).

pelego--a name derived from the sheepskin used by cowboys and horse-
men in south Brazil but which is generally used to describe cor-
rupt sindicato or union leaders who are more dependent on the
government than on their own worker or laborer following for
their position and status.

populismo--A term used in Latin America to describe a political
position which connotes an interest in and defense of the common
people, their sufferings, desires, and so forth, as opposed to
support of minority interests or oligarchies.

Prefeito--the administrative or executive head of a municipio whose
equivalent in the United States is Mayor and Prefect in France;
he is generally elected to the office although state governors
and the President may appoint them in special circumstances in-
cluding intervention by the state or federal government.

rapadura--a brown sugar from which none of the molasses has been
extracted made by the old-fashioned sugar engenhos; equivalent
to the Spanish-american panela.

Reconcavo--designation for the fertile coastal region embracing most
of seventeen municipios surrounding the city of Salvador, Bahia.


xxxvii










relatorio--report or annual message of a government agency or office.

roga--a small, burned-over patch of ground in the midst of a forest
or scrub land in which are planted subsistence crops such as
corn, beans, and mandioca.

secretaria--a department in state government. For example, the
Secretaria de agriculture is the equivalent of department or
office of agriculture in a North American state government.

sede--seat, the city in which the government of a municipio is located.

senhor de engenho--traditionally, the aristocratic master of a sugar
plantation and the casa grande which forms its nucleus.

senzala--the slave quarters generally found on a large landed estate
in the past, often near the casa grande, and at the present time,
often furnishing the dwelling space for resident workers or
laborers.

sertanejo--the common man who lives in the sertao of northeast Brazil.

sertao--(plural, sertoes)--the great northeastern interior, a semi-
arid area, covered with sparse, spiny vegetation, and sparsely
populated. Occasionally, it is cut by a temporary stream and
infrequently by a large river such as the Sgo Francisco, which
provide water for a narrow band of farms along its edge. The
setting for Euclides da Cunha's great Brazilian classic Os
Sertf'es, which has been translated into English as Rebellion in
the Backlands.

sindicato--an association of employers, workers, or professions which
performs interest group functions similar to a trade union or profes-
sional association in the United States, e.g., American Farm
Bureau Federation, American Dairy Association, National Agricultural
Workers Union, United Automobile Workers, Fraternal Order of Police,
National Education Association, and American Medical Association.
Brazilian law, influenced by the Corporate State ideas of Italy
under Mussolini, limits these groups to one per occupation, branch
or endeavor, or category per municipio or group of municipios in a
region. Two or more sindicatos of employers or employees or
doctors, for example, cannot function in the same municipio.
Sindicatos form the lowest level of a pyramid-like officially
sponsored arrangement above which are found federations at the
state level and confederations at the national level. All of
these groups have to be officially approved or recognized by one
or more relevant Ministries of the Federal government in order
to function legally. Financially, this officially sponsored
arrangement of organizations is supported by the Impbsto Sindical
although sindicatos may levy additional dues on their members.


xxxv i i









sitiante--a small farmer, the proprietor of a sitio or plot of land;
in Northeast Brazil, it is sometimes used to describe a squatter.

tarefa--task; used widely as a measure of land or to describe the
obligatory amount of work to be performed by a rural laborer for
a given salary or wage.

trabalho--work or labor; the phrase, "Trabalho e para cachorro e negro"
(Manual labor is for the dog and the Negro) describes traditional
upper- and middle-class Brazilian attitudes towards peasants or
anyone who works with his hands.

usina--the modern sugar refinery and plantation; in the Northeast, the
machinery of such a sugar refinery, however, may be forty years old.

vaqueiro--cowboy.

varzea--the present flood plain of a river; in particular, it is used
to describe the low coastal plain of Paraiba in northeast Brazil.


xxxix
































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51~


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- ---


I












CHAPTER I


AGRICULTURE AND AGRICULTURAL LABOR IN
ITS HISTORICAL, ECONOMIC, AND
SOCIAL SETTING IN BRAZIL


Introduction

In Brazil, the institutions of government, by and large, have

been used to'defend and advance the interests of an elite whose power

was based on the ownership of large amounts of land.' Beginning as

an essentially agricultural country, Brazil developed in the past

fifty years a mixed industrial and agricultural economy.2 As this

took place the upper class agricultural and professional elites

admitted industrialists and financial leaders into the decision-

making process at the national level and a middle class came to

exert a strong influence in several states and many local governments


1Among the writers who discuss the power of this landed elite
are Anyda Marchant, "Politics, Government and Law," in Brazil:
Portrait of Half a Continent, T. Lynn Smith and Alexander Marchant
(eds.) (New York: Dryden Press, 1951), pp. 359-362. James W. Rowe
'"The 'Revolution' and the 'System': Notes on Brazilian Politics,"
AUFS Reports, East Coast South America Series, Vol. XII, Nos. 3-5
(Brazil), esp. pp. 6-14 of Part I, "Seeds of the 'System."'
2
See Robert Alexander's Chapters on Brazil in Labor Relations in
Argentina. Brazil, and Chile (New York: McGraw Hill, 1962); Organized
Labor in Latin America (New York: The Free Press, 1965), and Prophets
of the Revolution (New York: The Macmillan Company, 1962); Frank
Bonilla, "A National Ideology for Development," in Expectant Peoples,
Nationalism and Development, K. H. Silvert (ed.) (New.York: Random
House, 1965), pp. 232-264; and Harry W. Hutchinson, "Cultural Change
in Brazil: An Analytical Model," Journal of Inter-American Studies
(July, 1964), pp. 303-313.









in the South. The country has undergone a spectacular series of

changes in formal governmental structures since the 1930's at the

national level from dictatorship to elected president, to parlia-

mentary government, to an elected president once again, and then to

a quasi-dictatorship which utilizes the forms of democratic govern-
2
ment to mask military control.

Whatever the form of government, the low status agricultural

groups generally did not exercise any influence of power within

the political system. This was due to their lack of education, isola-

tion from and poor communication with the centers of economic and

political influence and because the country's traditional system of

man-land relations put the peasant in a subordinate and dependent

situation. At the local level, peasant cooperatives have been important

for about forty-five years in the South where there was colonization

of several regions by small farmers or where conditions were such

that an "agricultural ladder" to provide upward mobility for peasant


For a consideration of the role of the middle class in Brazil,
see Charles Wagley, "The Brazilian Revolution: Social Change since
1930," in Social Change in Latin America, Richard Adams, et al. (eds.)
(New York: Vintage Books, Random House, 1960), p. 223; L. C. Bressner
Pereira, "The Rise of the Middle Class and Middle Management in Brazil,"
in Revolution in Brazil, Politics and Society in a Developing Nation,
Irving Louis Horowitz (ed.) (New York: E. P. Dutton and Company, 1964),
pp. 232-242, and J. V. Freitas Marcondes, "Social Legislation in Brazil,"
in Brazil: Portrait of Half a Continent. T. Lynn Smith and Alexander
Marchant (eds).

2Kenneth F. Johnson, "Causal Factors in Latin American Political
Instability," Western Political Quarterly, XVII, No. 3 (September,
1964), pp. 432-446, considers that the maldistribution of land owner-
ship, entrepreneurial deficiencies, urbanization, and over-population
contribute to this political instability but "do not necessarily tell
us when it can be expected to occur."









laborers to become members of a rural small proprietor middle class was

established. But their influence was a limited one.

During the 1950's, the low status agricultural population,

especially in the Northeast, finally began to be organized. To under-

stand how this change came about and how new contenders for power

developed, claiming to represent the agricultural low-status groups,

it is necessary to review the following: the origins, myths, and

reality of the latifundio or large landed estate, the systematic

attempts to drain as much income and energy as possible from peasants,

the effects of nineteenth century immigrant colonization, and the

socio-economic changes and pressures in rural areas since the 1930's.


Origins of the Large Estate and Latifundio1

The systems of landownership and control established by the

Portuguese in Brazil represented a sharp break with the traditional

small-farm agricultural pattern of Portugal. From the beginning,

land was given in large grants called sesmaria or appropriated by

"adventurers from the lower and even the upper segments of the

nobility who migrated in order to restore depleted fortunes."'2

For the most part, ordinary citizens homess do povo) or "plebeians"

came only in later years, after the discovery of gold and diamonds


The best treatments of the origins and effects of concentrated
landholding patterns in Brazil are T. Lynn Smith, Brazil: People and
Institutions (rev. ed.; Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University
Press, 1963), pp. 245-246; and Inter-American Committee for Agri-
cultural Development (CIDA), Land Tenure Conditions and Socio-Economic
Development of the Agricultural Sector, Brazil (Washington, D.C.:
Pan American Union, General Secretariat, Organization of American
States, 1966), passim.

2Smith, oP. cit., p. 319, is paraphrased and quoted for this first
paragraph.









and the country's economic development made a place for small manufactur-

ing and trading enterprises. In addition, as Oliveira Vianna points out,

lands were granted only to persons who could convince the authorities

that they were from "good" families and had the slaves, finances and

other requisites to develop sugar plantations, mills, and cattle ranches.1

In no other Latin American country have such huge blocks of land been

owned by such a small group of people who dominated agriculture in

almost every part of the country, regardless of climate or major type

of land use. Many of the largest properties were acquired illegally

or fraudulently.2 Two major types of irregularities have continued to

the present time, not only in the old sugar or cacao regions of the

Northeast but also in the new frontier regions of Parana', Mato Grosso,

Goias, and the Federal District of Brasilia:

1. After federal or state agencies announce plans to colonize
"public lands," private individuals appear claiming title
to all or parts of this land, whereupon these newly discovered
"owners" are given a concession of land or their "private
title" is recognized and the land is purchased by the federal
or state government concerned. The Northeast Development
Agency (SUDENE) has been victimized frequently by this practice
as have the state governments of Rio de Janeiro and Rio Grande
do Sul.

2. Once public lands are settled and land values rise, speculators
on adjacent properties move their boundary lines or discover
that their "titles" cover part of or all of the cleared or

I bid., citing, Oliveira Vianna, "0 Povo Brasileiro e sua
Evolugao," Recenseamento do Brasil, 1920, Vol. I (Rio de Janeiro,
1922), pp. 284-285.
2Graciliano Ramos, Sao Bernardo (Seventh edition; Sao Paulo:
Livraria Martins Editora, 1961), pp. 41-50; and Jorge Amado, Gabriela,
Clove and Cinnamon, trans. James L. Taylor and William L. Grossman
(Greenwich, Conn.: Fawcett Publications, Crest Book, 1964), pp. 68-
82, are two famous Brazilian novels which deal with, among other things,
the use of violence to acquire and protect land in Alagoas and Bahia,
respectively.









cultivated lands. In many cases, the speculators used hired
gunmen to eject the colonist. This practice has taken place
frequently in the 1960's in Paran', Mato Grosso, Goias, and
the new Federal District of Brasilia.]

Throughout Brazil's history, many of Brazil's leading families

have obtained land in this fashion or fought off attempts by rivals to

acquire their land. Throughout Brazil's history, the names Albuquerque

de Barros, Bezerra, Cavalcanti, Mello, Maranhao, Queiroz, Lima, Coelho,

Wanderley, Monteiro, Oliveira, Pessoa, Bulh6es, Magalhaes, Cabral,

Campos, Borges, Lina, Coutinho, and Guimaraes appear over and over

again. Throughout Brazil's history, indigo, sugar, cotton, coffee,

cacao, lumber, and livestock have been produced for export on a large

scale in response to the demands of foreign markets.

In addition, two other points need emphasis: (1) the Catholic

Church never acquired the large amounts of land which have made it

famous elsewhere in Latin America,2 and (2) a system of small farms

or "shelter belt," protecting the plantations from the natives, as in

the case of the United States, never developed in the hinterland.3

Even before its independence in 1822, Brazil was a nation with

a high concentration of landownership, much unused land, a backward

agriculture, and "many poor families wandering from place to place,

following the favor and caprice of landowners and always lacking the


ICIDA, op. cit., pp. 15-16.

2Smith, op. cit., p. 322, points out that a royal letter of
February 23, 1711, stipulated that no "concessions of land in the
State of Brazil" shall pass "by any title to the dominion of Religions,"
quoting Joaquim da Silva Rocha, Historia da Coloniza~po do Brasil, Vol. I
(Rio de Janeiro, 1918 and 1919), p. 158.

3Smith, op. cit., p. 320.









means of obtaining some ground on which they could make a permanent

establishment."'

There was little sub-division of the old concessions anywhere.

The proprietors of the interior surrounded themselves with a popula-

tion of sharecropping tenants, renters, and squatters living in

"almost feudal" relationships to a few fazendeiros, "at whose nod they

are subservient and bowed, in order not to be ejected from their

miserable ranchos [thatched huts] where they live and from the roca or

engenho where they work to gain their daily bread."2

Except in the South, where a program of colonization was started

in the nineteenth century, Brazil entered the post World War II period

as a nation in which the landed estate with large amounts of unused

land or latifundia ruled supreme.3 Few changes appear to be occurring

in the size of Brazilian farms except in the very largest estates of

100,000 hectares (247,000 acres) or more which increased in number

from 37 in 1940 to 60 in 1950.4 The concentration of land in a

Ibid., p. 324, quoting a statement by Goncalves Chaves in Ruy
Cirne Lima, Terras Devolutas (Porto Alegre, 1935), pp. 33-44.
2Joao Cardoso de Menezes e Souza, Theses sobre Colonizacao no
Brasil (Rio de Janeiro, 1875), p. 309, quoted in Smith, Brazil, p. 300.

3As noted in the Glossary of terms, estates generally over 500
hectares (1,200 acres) fall into this category.

Smith, o2. cit., pp. 336-337, indicates these large establish-
ments were found as follows in 1950 in the following states: Acre (16);
Amazonas-Rio Branco (4); Para-Amapa (7); Bahia (3); Parana (2); Mato
Grosso-Guapore (16); Maranhao (1); Piauf (4), Santa Catarina (1), and
Goids (2).
Unfortunately, the census does not indicate the names of the
owners of these tracts. In addition, Joao Goulart's acquisition of
many large tracts of land in several states while President was not a
significant departure from the traditional Brazilian phenomenon of









relatively small number of families is shown by the 1950 census in

which only 14.6 per cent of all farm establishments occupied 83.4

per cent of all the land in farms; conversely 85.4 per cent of all

farms establishments--those less than 100 hectares--occupied only

16.8 per cent of all the land in farms.l (See Table 1.)

The importance of low wage agricultural labor in several states

with large amounts of unused land is seen in data on the distribution

of tractors and plows in ten states. The more advanced states of the

South have mechanized much of their agricultural regions in contrast

to the North and Northeast. (See Table 2.)

Although some subdivision of land through inheritance or tax

pressures is occurring in Minas Gerais, Sao Paulo, Rio Grande do

Sul, and the Northeast, it is important to remember::


individuals trying to buy up land in different municipios or states
for status, tax, or investment purposes.
Not every source agrees that the maldistribution of land in
Brazil has had bad effects. W. H. Nicholls and Ruy Miller Paiva,
"The Structure and Productivity of Brazilian Agriculture," Journal
of Farm Economics, Vol. XLVII, No. 2 (May 1956), p. 361, affirm that
"Brazil owes a substantial debt to those large landowners who are
active in settling, developing and improving the nation's agricultural
resources." They argue that the higher labor productivity of the larger
farms is "probably a net social advantage so long as Brazil is so short
of adequate farm job opportunities." Of course, similar claims were
made by the supporters of the slave system in the United States as a
reason for maintaining the slaveowners' dominant position of power.
CIDA, op. cit., p. 83, is among the sources which note that the
absence of or limitations of available statistics make it extremely
difficult to compare the productivity and levels of living possible
from a ten-hectare farm in a valley near Rio de Janeiro or Sao Paulo
with a latifundio of over 500 hectares or 12,000 acres in Rio Grande
do Sul or Minas Gerais. In any case, in this writer's opinion, the
absence and limitations of agricultural statistics are a reflection
of the satisfaction of the landed elite with the existing distribution
and productivity of land.








TABLE 1


NUMBER AND AREA OF FARM ESTABLISHMENTS
ACCORDING TO SIZE 1950a


Size of Holding Number of Establishments Area of Establishments
in hectares Per Cent Total Per Cent
Total of Total hectares of Total


Less than 10 710,934 34.5 3,025,372 1.3

10 to 99 1,052,557 50.9 35,562,747 15.3

100 to 999 268,159 13.0 75,520,717 32.5

1,O000 to 9,999 31,017 1.5 73,093,482 31.5

10,000 and more 1,611 .1 45,008,788 19.4

Undeclared 364 0.0 --


2,064,642 100.0 232,211,106 100.0


aSource of data:


Manuel Die'gues Junior, Populacao e Propriedade da
Terra no Brasil (Washington, D.C.: Uniao Pan-
Americana, Secretaria Geral, Organiza9ao dos Estados
Americanos, 1959), p. 253.









TABLE 2

DISTRIBUTION OF TRACTORS AND PLOWS ACCORDING TO
PRELIMINARY RESULTS, AGRICULTURAL CENSUS
SEPTEMBER 1, 1960, SELECTED STATESa


Agricultural Work Steel
State Force Tractors Plows


Maranhao 928,801 41 118b
Piaui 355,187 59 1,403
Rio Grande do Norte 296,494 246 304
Pernambuco 879,844 (1950)c 142 (1950)c 3,902 (1950)c

Minas Gerais 2,076,829 5,024 93,040
Rio de Janeiro 240,853 1,469 12,314
Sao Paulo 1,683,038 28,101 286,580
Paran' 1,276,854 d 4,996 82,324
Rio Grande do Sul 1,071,404 (1950) -- 312,001 (1950)

Goias 492,745 1,299 6,388
Mato Grosso 184,340 997 5,386
Federal District 2,385 7 23
of Brasilia

aCompiled from "Censo Agricola-1960, Resultados Preliminares~'Re-
vista Brasileira dos Municipios (Rio de Janeiro: IBGE, Conselho Nacional
de Estatistica), Ano XVI (July-December, 1963), pp. 168-192, and Smith,
OP. cit., pp. 331 and 387.
bin 1950, the Sixth Agricultural Census found 180 plows in Ma-
ranhao, an increase over the seventy-one found in 1940. The writer has
no information on the decline in number of plows unless the preliminary
statistics gathered by the 1960 Agricultural Census were inadequate.
CThe IBGE had not published data on .. Pernambuco, but the
writer thought it would be useful to present Smith's 1950 statistics
which show the low rate of mechanization in the Northeast, the reliance
on hoe culture, and dependence on fire or slash and burn agriculture in
many regions.


dSmith, op. cit., p. 331.









The mere subdivision of a large fazenda among the numerous progeny
of a deceased owner does not result automatically in the change
from a system of large-scale agricultural exploitation to a well-
rounded system of small farming. On the contrary, such a
manner of subdivision is likely merely to mean that each heir
receives insufficient land to enable him successfully to carry
on the type and scale of agricultural enterprises with which he
is familiar, to live in the manner that he feels is the right of
a member of his family and social class, and to carry on the type
of rural life that he considers to be the mainstay of the nation.

Moreover, the lack of a system of primogeniture which keeps

property intact and passes it on to a single heir as in England or the

United States, makes it difficult for the many owners or donos of a

single property to agree on how it should be managed, much less

improvements made.2

In the coastal sugar regions, the introduction of more modern

processes and of twentieth century machinery has reduced the status

of many senhores de enoenho to that of suppliers (fornecedores) of cane

to the sugar mills (usinas) who used their greater financial power to

buy up sugar, cotton, and coffee land in order to lessen their depend-

ence upon the fornecedores. The giant sugar mill corporations, with

an absentee ownership, took over the land and many of the functions of

the former sugar landed aristocracy, which at least lived on the land

and maintained a paternalistic relation in many cases with its slaves

and free workers living on the estate.

In the twentieth century, the introduction of modern machinery

and processes has reduced the status of many senhores de enqenho in


Smith, op. cit., p. 338. Italics mine.

1bid., Smith notes on p. 341 that "it is not unusual to find
an estate whose ownership is vested in hundreds of persons represent-
ing as many as five generations. And even this is not the extreme."









the coastal Northeast to that of suppliers (fornecedores) of cane to

the giant sugar mills (usinas) operated by absentee owners.2 The

usinas have used their greater financial power to take over much of

the land and social functions of this landed aristocracy which lived

on the land in many cases and maintained a paternalistic relationship

with its slaves or free workers.3


The Myth and Reality of the "Ideal-type" Fazenda

The most sympathetic description of the traditional Brazilian

estate known as the engenho, fazenda, or estancia (as it was known

in the South) is that of Gilberto Freyre who called it the "most

stable type of civilization found in Hispanic America."4 In

its ideal form, the fazenda was a large agricultural establishment


See Smith, op. cit., pp. 306-308, for a description of this
process including quotations from A. P. Figueiredo, editor of the
Recife newspaper, 0 Proaresso, in 1846.

2Harry W. Hutchinson, Village and Plantation Life in North-
eastern Brazil (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1957), pp.
7-8, found "a maximum of family traditions and paternalism" in the
ownership and operation of many usinas in the Recencavo region north-
west of Salvador, Bahia.

3The writer observed this process taking place in the municipios
of Guariba, Jaboticabal, and Jardinopolis, Sao Paulo, in visits to
regions northwest of the state capital of Sao Paulo on November 28-29,
1964.
See also CIDA, op. cit., pp. 518-519, which notes that over 46
per cent of the total sugar cane harvest in Pernambuco came from land
owned by the mills. Almost all of the remaining cane was raised by
2,870 who were contracted by nearby mills to process their cane. An
additional portion of sugar cane is still processed into rapadura
(brown sugar cakes) by ox-driven or bagasse-powered steam engines for
distribution to the inhabitants of the Sertao,

4Gilberto Freyre, The Masters and the Slaves (Abridged Edition),
trans. from the Portuguese by Samuel Putnam (New York: Alfred A.
Knopf, 1964), p. 7.






























Figure 2.--A "temporary" one year old hut of squatters, Colonia Pindo-
rama, near Penedo, Alagoas, July 14, 1965.


5in






















Figure 3.--A "traditional" sugar plantation between Maceio and Penedo,
Alagoas, July, 1965. On the left, a chapel; in the center,
the Casa Grande; on the right, the sugar mill; and scattered
about are other 'smaller buildings housing workers or livestock.






























Figure 4.--Engenho Bento Velho, Municipio of Vitoria de Santo Antao, Per-
nambuco, near the paved highway between Recife and Vitoria de
Santo Antao. Engenho Galileia is about one-half mile to the
right over a dirt road. An administrator manages Bento Velho
for Usina Bulhoes.





















Figure 5.--A "barracao" or "company store" operated by a Senhor de Engenho
on the dirt highway between Goiana and Tambe, Pernambuco.
Second from the left is Joao Jordao da Silva, Treasurer of the
Federation of Rural Workers of the State of Pernambuco, July 2,
1965.






























Figure 6.--The homes of sugar plantation workers lining one of the roads
leading out of Ribeirao Preto, Pernambuco, July 19, 1965.























Figure 7.--One of several barracks-style homes for the families of workers,
Engenho Gallo, District of Xexeu, Municipio of Agua Preta, Per-
nambuco, July 10, 1965. The Engenho belongs to the family of
Senator Francisco Pessoa de Queiroz, also a major stockholder
in Jornal do Comercio. a radio station, and two television
stations.









inhabited by the owner, his family, and a number of more or less

fixed tenants or wage laborers who were allowed to cultivate a piece

of the land and repaid the owner in a variety of ways. The fazenda

was:

A locality group; isolated, to a greater or a lesser degree from
similar groups by the bad roads, the lack of other means of com-
munication and the sheer extension of the lands. Often such a
locality group had its own service-providing sector: a shop, a
school, a chapel, and in some cases even an incipient armed force.

In order to meet their own need for an adequate and dependable

supply of labor, latifundio and plantation owners often entered into

arrangements with nomadic squatters who were permitted to clear and

work land on the fringes of the latifundio as a means of substantiating

or extending the owner's control over a piece of ground.2 In their

everyday relationships with tenants, laborers, and squatters, the

plantation owners astutely adjusted the terms of employment or land

use to meet their own needs and to protect themselves against the rights

or claims of peasants against the land or against the landowner.

Peasants were deliberately kept disoriented so that they would not

threaten the existing land structure.


The Systematic Attempts to Drain as Much Income
and Energy as Possible from Peasants

Large monetary returns from inherited landed properties were and

still are possible because of the unlimited supplies of labor and land.


UGaljart, op. cit., pp. 4-5.

2"Squatting" as a phenomenon is related to many of the politically
inspired reports of "invasions" of plantations, cattle ranches, and other
rural properties in the 1960's--a phenomenon which is dealt with in
several later chapters









This is because agriculture was extensive and not intensive. Many of

the latifundistas did not seek to increase the yield per acre but

sought to get by with as little managerial or capital investment as

possible. Their earnings were often channelled into commerce and

industry where the returns on cash investment have been traditionally

much higher than in agriculture. In turn, savings or profits from

commercial and industrial enterprises--which improved the credit

position of the estate owner--would often be used to purchase new

land when it was available as a hedge against inflation and to improve

total farm returns, thus increasing their wealth and prestige.2

The large landowners also received an income from peasants who

borrowed money, patronized landowner-owned stores, or sold their agri-

cultural produce to the landowner. Peasants were considered good

borrowers, customers, and "sellers," because high interest rates, high

prices, and high rentals could be levied against them and they could

be forced to work off any debts they owed. Many estates have been so

large that a peasant could not buy such essentials as coffee, salt, or


1CIDA, op. cit., pp. 565-567, is an extensive discussion of the
"economic double life" of the large estates.
2This writer discovered many large landowners in Rio Grande do
Sul, Sao Paulo, Pernambuco, and Rio Grande do Norte, who lamented the
lack of rural credit facilities and complained of the bureaucratic
"red tape" necessary for agricultural credit. On the other hand, the
writer found that these men generally did not invest agricultural
loans, whether from private or state banks and agencies in their
agricultural enterprises but in urban housing, commercial ventures, or
in short-term or long-range business ventures in South Brazil if they
were Northeastern landowner-merchants. In an interview July 9, 1965,
Cid Sampaio, sugar industrialist, landowner, and former Governor of
Pernambuco, asked this writer if Americans would invest in a local
agricultural enterprise if they could obtain higher rates of return
by investing funds in a business in other parts of the United States!









clothing anywhere except in the stores (barracbes) operated by the land-

owners or their administrators. In other cases, landowners inhibited

their peasants from using nearby public markets (feiras) by paying them

in script (vales) which could be redeemed only in the barracoes. The

vales shown below for 200 and 500 cruzeiros (11W and 27t respectively,

in July 1965) were issued to laborers on the Engenho Gallo, part of

the Santa Terezina Sugar Mill, Xexeu District, Municipio of Agua Preta,

Pernambuco, which belongs to the family of Senator and communications
2
media owner Francisco Pessoa de Queiroz.

A nfssa Cs r Mriz ou Filiais A a nossa Casa Matriz Filiais
Queiram Ygr .o.i em mcrcado- Queiram P'i-i ,'+rem mercado-
f rias aNt; o "Q clj,.' DUZENTOS rias at6 o,[alor'df, QUINHEN-
SCRUZE'OS-dc.*iowsa conta ] TOS CRLTZEdi0S1le nossa conta I
a i i s SaudaCOes,

.. ...... ...... ................ ...... .......................


Table 3 illustrates the prices of selected consumer goods in

representative stores in Pernambuco in July 1965 when rural worker

salaries in the sugar zone ranged between 1,000 and 1,730 cruzeiros

per day (U.S.$ .55-.90). Table 4 illustrates the effect of deductions

]On July 10, 1965, this writer talked with nine male heads of
family in a group of 25 persons at the Enqenho barracks in which these
people lived. Five could read and write their names; only one could
write anything more. Thirteen men and boys worked the previous week
for 1,100 cruzeiros (604) per day if the tasks assigned were considered
fulfilled by the plantation administrator. Many individuals on the
Enaenho were paid only 550 cruzeiros (or approximately 30) per day.

2Senator Pessoa de Queiroz also owns the Nossa Senhora de Carmo
Sugar Mill in Amaraji Municipio, two radio stations, a television
station, and is principal stockholder of two newspapers in Recife.


















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for rent and non-payment of minimum wages in eight different states

in 1957. This extra exploitation further irritated many peasants and

their leaders in the last decade when peasants began to organize

peasant sindicatos and cooperatives.


The Concentration of Property Ownership
and Political Activism in a Small
Number of Families

The ownership and management of Brazilian business enterprises

has been dominated by family enterprises,] the philosophy of the

"robber baron,"2 a paucity of real joint-stock companies, a heavy

degree of economic concentration,3 and a disproportionate amount of

industrial development in the state of S~o Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and

a few areas around the state capital of P6rto Alegre, Belo Horizonte,

Salvador, and Recife.


1Alexander, Labor Relations, pp. 45-48.
2W. Paul Strassman, "The Industrialist," in Continuity and
Change in Latin America, John J. Johnson (ed.) (Stanford: Stanford
University Press, 1964), p. 174.
Anthony Leeds, "Brazilian Careers and Social Structure: A
Case History and Model," in Contemporary Cultures and Societies of
Latin America, Dwight B. Heath and Richard N. Adams (eds.).(New York:
Random House, 1965), pp. 379-401, describes the kinship and other
informal social links such as the cabide de empreco and panelinha found
in developing areas of Brazil.
Alexander, op. cit., pp. 48-50; Strassman, op. cit., pp. 168-174.

3Mauricio Vintras de Queiroz, "Os Grupos Economicos no Brasil,"
Revista do Instituto de Ciencias Sociais da Universidade do Brasil
(July-December 1962), pp. 157-169; the state of Sao Paulo accounts for
over 65 per cent of Brazilian industrial production.

4Rio Grande do Sul has developed a rather diversified industrial
base in many small landholding regions of the state.
John J. Johnson,"Introduction," in Johnson, op. cit., p. 52, and
Robert Alexander, op. cit., pp. 52-54.
To some extent, the reluctance of Luso-Brazilian families to save
and invest in industry accounts for the dominance of immigrant or first
generation ownership of industry in the southern states.









Native investment capital has historically reacted against

industrial development. Safer and less risky investments in land

or housing have been preferred. Large landholders seldom invested

in industry, other than those types which processed agricultural

crops, such as sugar, coffee, and cocoa. In Pernambuco, it was

discovered that at least 29 of 46 sugar mills functioning in 1965

were landowner family-operated corporations.

Moreover, unlike Sao Paulo and other modernizing areas of Latin

America where new industrial or business groups formed the bases of

new political groups, the new business sectors of the Northeast

continue to be dominated by the old landowning elite.2 As a con-

sequence, the "old traditional families" have monopolized the decision-

making processes of these sub-systems. In Pernambuco, for example,

the 29 inter-related families controlling forty-six usinas each had

a family member or close relative in the State Assembly and the Federal

Congress in the 1960-1965 period. At the Municipio level, local

Prefeitos and/or Councils seldom opposed the large landowners in those

few instances in which these men did not belong to the kinship or

clientele structure of the usineiro or fazendeiro.


1Merle Kling, "Toward a Theory of Power and Political Instability
in Latin America," Western Political Quarterly, Vol. IX, No. 1 (March
1966), pp. 33-34.

2The generous fiscal incentives offered by Article 34-18 of the
SUDENE law brought in approximately $200 million in private Brazilian funds
between 1961-1965, which will undoubtedly introduce new political
ideas and structures in time.









The Effects of 19th Century Colonization

In the nineteenth century, private companies and federal and

state governments attempted to establish communities of small independent

farmers in Pernambuco, Bahia, Sergipe, Sao Paulo, Parana, Santa Cata-

rina, and Rio Grande do Sul.1 Large properties were sub-divided,

families placed on farm plots, and aid and supervision extended in many

cases. In the Northeastern states, most of these projects failed.2 In

the South, more success was achieved and a new agricultural civilization

based on small farms was created in the thinly populated regions which

had produced hides, dried meat, and timber. As a result, the principal

regions of small family proprietors include:

1. The Colony (a colonial a zone west and north of Peorto
Alegre, and two municipios around Pelotas, in Rio Grande
do Sul.

2. The plateau west of Curitiba, Parana.

3. The Itajai and Tubarao Valleys of Santa Catarina.

4. Western Sao Paulo.

5. The so-called "Triangulo Mineiro" of Southwest Minas Gerais.


1Zempati Ando, Pioneirismo e Cooperativismo (Sao Paulo: Funda9ao
Escola de Sociologia e Polftica de S~o Paulo, 1961), is a good descrip-
tion of the history of Japanese colonization in Brazil in general and
of the Japanese who formed the Cotia Cooperative in April, 1927, in
particular.
In the Municipio of Tambos, to the east of Porto Alegre, RGS, the
German colonists have undergone a process of degeneration (caboclizacao)
whereby their cultural level is much more akin to that of lower class
Luso-Brazilians of the Northeast. Writer's notes.

2Carlos Alberto de Medina, "A Estrutura Agraria Brasileira:
Caracterfsticas e Tendencias," America Latina (January-March, 1964), pp.
71-90, contains data on Espfritu Santo, where several German colonies









These regions are significant not only in terms of a more diver-

sified agriculture, increased production of foodstuffs and fibers for

processing into other products such as shoes and textiles, but also

for the creation of a rural and small town middle class which helped

bring about economic and political change.

The communities founded by German, Italian, Polish, Dutch, or

Japanese small farmers differ very much from the Luso-Brazilian com-

munities described by Gilberto Freyre and others. The former are much

more articulate, integrated, capable, and willing to enter into joint

action on behalf of the community.l If one notes the existence of

tension in their relationships at election time these tensions have

little effect on other social relationships.2

In fact, many small farmers in the Colonia region around Caxias

do Sul northwest of Porto Alegre (in which average farm size is 18.7

hectares or 44.9 acres)3 refer to themselves as "colonos" or "colonists"


in the nineteenth century degenerated within the lifetime of the col-
onists; Ernst Wagemann, "A Colonizagao Alema no Estado do EspIrito
Santo" (tradugao de Reginaldo Santana), IBGE-Rio de Janeiro, 1949.

Emilio Willems, "Brazil," in The Positive Contributions by
Immigrants, A Symposium prepared for UNESCO by the International
Sociological Association and the International Economic Association
(Second Impression; Paris: UNESCO, 1960), p. 134.
2CIDA, op. cit., pp. 546-547.

3Land distribution and farm sizes for the seven geographic regions
of Rio Grande do Sul may be found in Comissbo Especial de Reforma Agra-
ria, Bases e Diretrizes para Um Proqrama Estadual de Reforma Agraria
(Porto Alegre: Instituto Gaucho de Reforma Agraria, 1963), Table II on
unnumbered page facing p. 11-3.










and not as peasants (camponeses) because of their relatively high

levels of well-being and status.

In contrast to the absenteeism of the large landowners found

in much of Brazil, many writers have observed that the immigrants

in the small farm regions and their Brazilian-born offspring did

not acquire land only as an investment opportunity or as a source

of prestige (although there is a clear consciousness of the status

that ownership implies). Rather, land was "acquired fundamentally

and principally as a means of livelihood" by people who wanted to

remain associated with the neighborhood in which they grew up even

if this is not always possible for the younger members of a family

for whom the community may offer little or no employment because land

and job resources have become scarce.

A visitor to one of the areas inhabited by small farmers is

almost always surprised by the large number of voluntary cultural

groups and religious organizations which function there. The following,


1Various small farmers with only 15-20 hectares of land in the
geographic zones known as the Encosta Inferior Nordeste, Encbsta Su-
perior Nordeste, and Alto Uruguai, emphasized this fact to this
writer in his discussions with them in 1965.
The writer does not know if this self-concept of being a "co-
lono" and not a "campones" has always existed in this region or if
the self-concept was developed as an outgrowth of the publicity given
the Peasant Leagues of the Northeast and a desire on the part of many
Gaucho small farmers not to associate themselves with the Juliao-
inspired groups.
2CIDA, op. cit., p. 547, discusses the problem of out-migration
in the Santa Cruz region of Rio Grande do Sul where 95 per cent of
farm properties are less than 100 hectares and the average farm size
is 65.9 hectares.









with their German, Portuguese, or Japanese names, were encountered

by this writer:

Dramatic societies (Theatervereine), bowling clubs (kegelklubs or
clubes de boche), rifle clubs or hunting societies (Schutsenve-
reine or Clubes de Tiradores), Choral societies (Gesangvereine);
dance circles or dance halls (Tanskranschen or Saloes de danqas),
school societies (schulevereine or sociedades de padres), young
men's associations (seinendan or clubes de jovens), cooperatives
cooperativess and among the Japanese, mutual-help associations
or kumi).

In April 1965, while staying at the combined rural school and

home of Ladyr Rech, President of the Gaucho Agrarian Front or FAG for

the Diocese of Caxias do Sul, this writer participated in the following

series of events on a Sunday:2

Attended the second of two morning masses in the village Church
of Fazenda Souza.

Attended a meeting of local small farmers to discuss contribu-
tions to the Social Security Fund created by the Rural Worker
Statute but which the Federal Government was reluctant to
establish--in effect, forcing government to act by making
deposits in local banks to the Social Security Fund of the
Rural Worker Statute.

Visited the stables and gardens of the Catholic Seminary for
Boys operated in the Village of Fazenda Souza.

Gave a lecture on the United States to about fifty boys who
attend the Seminary.

Attended a Soccer match between the Seminary Team and a team
from another village in the Municipio of Caxias do Sul.

Table 5 lists several types of voluntary associations by states

in Brazil for 1959. With the exception of Bahia, Minas Gerais, and

Ceara, voluntary-group activity is much higher per capital and per mu-

nicipio in the southern states where there was foreign colonization.


1Willems, op. cit., p. 134, also discusses this phenomenon.

20n the other hand, the writer never found such a wide range of
activities tn a Northeast Village or town.



















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Bahia's literary tradition undoubtedly contributes to the large number

of literary societies in that state, especially in the Illheus-ltabuna

regions of which Jorge Amado has written. Minas Gerais and Ceara have

a long religious tradition--that of southern Ceara having been supported

by the many religious groups created by followers of Padre Cicero in

his memory.] The Rural Associations, the principal formally organized

pressure groups of large landowners in most Brazilian states, are

discussed in greater detail in Chapter III.

Since there was no public school system to speak of in the early

days of colonization in the nineteenth century, the German and

Italian immigrants organized their own schools, whose quality was

gradually improved through "summer school" teacher training courses

of the "People's Union' (Volksverein or Uniao Popula in Novo Hamburgo,

Rio Grande do Sul, and other areas colonized by Germans, Italians,

Slavs, and Japanese.2 In addition, teachers frequently were sent to

Europe or Japan for additional training or brought over to teach from

the motherland--the local community paying all or a sizeable proportion

of their salaries and living expenses. The consequences of this

peasant interest in schools is reflected in the high level of literacy,

large number of small town newspapers, and large number of hospitals

in the South in 1959. (See Table 6.)

Jos6 Fabio Barbosa da Silva, "Organizacao Social de Juazeiro
e Tensoes entire Litoral e Interior," Socioloqia, Vol. XXIV, No. 3
(September, 1962), pp. 190-191.

2Willems, op. cit., pp. 134-137, discusses the impact of the
two World Wars, the differing values of Luso-Brazilian majorities,
and state and federal legislation designed to bring schools, co-
operatives and religious and recreational associations under Brazilian
control.












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Figure 8.--The town house of a traditional cattle rancher (estanciero),
Pelotas, Rio Grande do Sul, February 27, 1967.


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Figure 9.--From left to right: the rural school-and-home of Ladyr Rech,
President of the FAG Regional Department, a neighborhood
chapel, and a neighborhood or community recreation center
under construction, Fazenda Souza zone, District of Ana Rech,
Municipio of Caxias do Sul, Rio Grande do Sul, February 7,
1965.


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Table 7 compares the population and school facilities of two

German-Brazilian municiDios in Rio Grande do Sul (Santa Cruz--which is a

commercial and industrial center--and Venancio Aires--which is

predominantly rural) with Jaboatao--an industrial and sugar-producing

Luso-Brazilian municipio--outside of Recife, Pernambuco.

This table supports a subjective judgment that the school systems

in the small farm regions of Rio Grande do Sul are much larger for the

area and population than the school systems in Pernambuco; rural

children in Rio Grande do Sul appear to have a much greater chance

to go to school than do rural children in Pernambuco.


The Role of Immigrant Groups in Political Change

In Brazil, no politically organized body of immigrants or "polit-

ical minorities" have ever actually competed for power with existing

parties.1 European and Japanese immigrants who came to Brazil did

not establish political parties, programs, or ideologies as did

Italian immigrants to Argentina who helped found the Radical and

Socialist Parties in the late 1800's. Nevertheless, historical

experience and the economic need for stability for those immigrants

engaged in agriculture, business, and industry taught these settlers

that revolutions and political unrest meant property confiscation,

destruction of crops and livestock, plunder, and bloodshed. The grow-

ing participation and influence on the Brazilian-born population of

recent European extraction, particularly on the municipio and state


The writer is referring to groups which would correspond to the
Irish-American, Slavic Democrat, or German Republican Clubs so pro-
minent in the United States.





































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level, has helped other Brazilians to change some of the traditional

political patterns. In particular, the political monopoly of the

old family oligarchies was destroyed and fraud and armed force are

rarely used in the South although still quite common in the Northeast.l


The Effects of Colonization on
Legislative Representation

One would presume that one indication of the assimilation of

recent groups into Brazilian society would be the appearance of non-

Luso or non-Portuguese names in the State Assemblies or the Federal

Congress--especially in view of the oft-repeated statement that

"Brazil is a racial democracy."2 However, when one examines the names

and background of legislators in the states of Pernambuco, Rio Grande

do Sul, and Sro Paulo--one finds a differential treatment accorded

these groups.3 With one possible exception, the 83 State Deputies


1Willems, op. cit., p. 139, notes that peasants of German, Italian,
and Polish origin established armed militias in the southern states
during the "revolutionary" campaigns of 1924-1925 which protected the
colonial of Rio Grande do Sul and other regions from the various
armed groups in the region, including those of Luis Carlos Prestes.
In recent years, the parades of "hunting" or "shooting" clubs to
celebrate the anniversaries of various communities are a reminder to
the communities themselves and to state and national leaders of the
capacity of these small farmers to defend themselves.

2Gilberto Freyre has been the greatest exponent of this lyrical
view of the assimilation of many ethnic strains. See for example, his
"Perspective of Brazil," Atlantic Monthly (February, 1956), pp. 8-12,
in which he notes the case of Lauro Muller, born in Santa Catarina,
who "became one of the most astute and influential politicians in
Brazil" "David Campista, the Brazilian son of a German Jew .
who became the Minister of Finance."
A more cautious appraisal is rendered by Charles Wagley (ed.),
Race and Class in Rural Brazil (Paris: UNESCO, 1952), esp. pp. 7-8,
140-144, and 154-155.

3By and large, students of Brazilian politics, Brazilian or
foreign, have not made behavioral studies of the ethnic, occupational,









and 24 Federal Deputies from Pernambuco in 1962-1965 were of Luso-

Brazilian origins. On the other hand, a substantial proportion of

the state and federal deputies from Rio Grande do Sul and Slo Paulo

were of non-Portuguese or non-Luso ancestry. The data are shown in

Table 8. Unfortunately, there is little occupational data to construct

a Table showing differences in the economic strata represented. Never-

theless, one would be safe in presuming that the large number of small

farmers of German, Italian, and Japanese descent in the southern

states would have access to these state and federal deputies because

these deputies were elected on the basis of votes from small-farming

regions.

Moreover, the writer thinks a significantly different political

style is indicated by the fact that all Gaucho Municipio Councils

which this writer visited met weekly, in contrast to the Councils in

Pernambuco which seldom met more than four or five times a year in

1964-1965 with two exceptions. In three Gaucho municipios--Caxias

do Sul, Santana do Livramento, and Venancio Aires, the Council

frequently met twice a week to discuss municipio, state, and national

affairs.


educational, and political backgrounds of council, deputies, senators,
and autonomous agency similar to that of David R. Matthews, U.S.
Senators and Their World (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina
Press, 1960), or John R. Wahlke and Heinz Eulau (eds.), Legislative
Behavior (Glencoe, Illinois: The Free Press, 1959).
Although the West European and Japanese migration to the North-
east has been small, the genetic contributions of Northwest Europeans
can be observed in the faces of the rural workers of Viteria de Santo
Antao, Pernambuco, shown in Figure 20, p. 145.









TABLE 8

NATIONAL ORIGINS OF MEMBERS OF STATE ASSEMBLIES
AND FEDERAL DEPUTIES, SELECTED BRAZILIAN STATES
1963-1965, COMPARED TO IMMIGRATION TO
BRAZIL, 1884-1957 (PERCENTAGES)a


National Pernambuco Sao Paulo Rio Grande Immigration
Origin of do Sul 1884-1957
Deputy or State Fed. State Fed. State Fed. (4,765,113)b
Ancestors (n=85) (n=24) (n119) (n-54) (n-79) (n-28)


Portuguese 96% 100% 50% 59% 39% 64% 30.6%
Italian 1% -- 20% 15% 25% 7% 31.7%
German -- 2% 2% 18% 25% 4.0%
Japanese 3% 4% -- 4.0%
Middle East -- 10% 5% 3% .8%d
Mixed or
Indeterminate 2% 5% 14% 4% e
Total 99% 100% 100% 100% 99% 100% 100,0%

aNational origins of members of the State Assemblies were determined
from voting lists and other data obtained by the writer in the Electoral
Tribunals of each state in 1965.
bSmith, Brazil, p. 126. Unfortunately, there are no statistics on
the foreign immigration to each state.
COne of these Deputies, Diogenese Gabriel Wanderley, is the scion of
a wealthy landowning family whose Dutch ancestors married into Pernambuco
families during the brief period of the Dutch conquest. The other non-
Luso name represented was that of Aureo Howard Bradley, whose family
origins are not known.
dThis 0.8% is derived from the 37,439 Syrian and Lebanese immigrants
who have gone to Brazil. Several thousand other immigrants have come from
Iran, Iraq, and Egypt, but precise figures are not available and it is
necessary to recognizethat border changes in the Middle East in the past
eighty years make the task of assigning national origins more difficult.
eThis 28.9% of the immigrant population is made up of persons from
more than thirty countries, the largest contribution being 657,744
persons from Spain or 13.8 per cent.









A Model of Differential Output of Funds for
Medical Facilities and Land Distribution

In order to determine if there might be a correlation between the

distribution of property in a state and the allocation of public funds

for a public purpose, this writer combined available data on land

distribution by municipios with data for the numbers and types of

medical facilities in Rio Grande do Sul to make Map in.Fig. 10. An-examin-

tion will show that municipios with 95 per cent or more farm hold-

ings less than 100 hectares (247 acres) have significantly higher

quantities of health facilities than the Campanha zone along the

Uruguayan frontier in which 15 per cent or less of farm holdings are

less than 100 hectares. In fact, the three geographic zones with

small farm holdings had more hospital beds in 1960 (9,116) than each

of the states of the North, Northeast, East, and Central West, except

for Pernambuco, Bahia, and Espfrito Santo--which would also lag behind

if it were not for the hospital facilities in their state capitals.1

If one compares the state and municipal government structure of

Rio Grande do Sul and Sgo Paulo with Pernambuco, one not only finds

greater outlays for education and health services, but also govern-

ments which have formally created Departments of Labor and Cooperative


1Based on a comparison of the totals listed on Fig. 10 with data
appearing in Anugrio EstatIstico. 1961, pp. 302-303.
Only one municipio with 95 per cent or more of its properties
less than 100 hectares--Candelaria to the west of Santa Cruz do Sul--
had a strong politician who dominated politics in recent years. In
Cardelaria, "Coronel" Albino Lenz, named first Intendente by Governor
Getulio Vargas in 1925, won re-election for the third time on the
ticket of the PSD on October 7, 1962. In this municipio, the south-
west portion covers part of the Central Depression plain and is made
up of a few very large cattle ranches and rice plantations.



















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Development Agencies within the state government--frequently headed

by persons of non-Luso origin. In 1965, for example, Benedito Ma-

tarazo, son of the Italian immigrant who built up one of South

America's largest industrial empires, succeeded Antonio Morimoto,

son of a Japanese immigrant farmer as Secretary of Labor in Sao

Paulo. In Pernambuco, on the other hand, although Miguel Arraes

(1962-1964) was the first Governor to assign an Assistant Secretary

to keep him informed about labor-management problems, no formal state

office with responsibility for matters dealing with urban or rural

workers exists in this or any Northeast state.


Socio-Economic Pressures and Changes since the 1930's

Until recently, a majority of Brazil's population was made up of

peasants who worked the land in a variety of land tenure and labor-

management systems ranging from "squatting" to highly productive

family and commercial farms similar to those encountered in Northwest

Europe, the United States, or Japan. In the past, there were advantages

for a peasant who lived on a fazenda rather than in a neighboring vil-

lage or town in terms of his opportunity to win the confidence of an

influential landowner and thus rise on the social scale. But this

ideal-type relationship was not always ideal nor was it a relation-

ship based on law.1

1This writer interviewed several peasant sindicato leaders in
Pernambuco who previously had been administrators but, allegedly were
fired for transmitting complaints from tenants or day laborers to the
plantation owner. If a fazendeiro lost a court case over non-observance
of minimum wage or social welfare legislation, his administrator was
seldom penalized--after all, he was only doing his job as the fazen-
deiro perceived it.









Since 1930, when Getdlio Vargas came to power, a series of changes

have taken place which may be summarized as follows:

1. Many landowners have left the fazendas and estancias for

nearby towns, the state capitals, and the big cities, leaving admin-

istrators in charge of the land or their small agricultural processing

operations. The administrators are peasants themselves, psycholo-

gically unequipped to assume the protective roles of the owners, and

have only a limited power to make decisions which cost money.

2. The increasing industrialization of many parts of the country,

bringing about higher wage levels in factory areas plus the establish-

ment of labor and welfare legislation, which were resisted by the land-

owners, attracted many peasants away from rural areas. Seasonal and

permanent migration to the industrial or harvesting areas in other

parts of the country was often encouraged by the landowners or ad-

ministrators who did not want the burdens of under-employed tenants;1

this further weakened the traditional paternalistic bonds between the

peasants and the landowners who may spend a "rustic weekend"at the

old Casa Grande but whose families no longer want to live there full-

time.

3. Putting workers on a straight-wage basis meant a change in

their spatial distribution. From being spread over the plantation,

they were agglomerated in hamlet-like settlements alongside the roads.


]In the Northeast, a great amount of sugar cane is harvested by
migratory workers from the Sertao; in Rio Grande do Sul, rice is
harvested by unemployed cowboys dismissed from cattle or sheep round-
ups or wool-shearing jobs or migratory sharecroppers from densely
populated parts of the state. Unfortunately, statistical data is
unavailable on this phenomenon which has its counter-parts in the
United States.









This, as Furtado remarks, made for easier communication among them,

for the rapid spread of ideas and what has come to be called the

"revolution of rising expectations."l

4. The individualism of landowners inhibited the formation of

cooperatives or regulatory groups to benefit all producers and not just

the financially strongest.

5. Although farm prices rose much more slowly in recent years

than the index of consumer prices for agricultural products, many

producers are also middlemen and earn an important part of their income

as merchants. Insistence on a flexible minimum-price policy for

producers would force landowners who are also middlemen to pay increased

prices for agricultural products to other landowners, something which

they are not yet willing to do, in part because this would reduce their

profit margins and, in part also, because it would affect their ability

to compete in foreign markets with other overseas suppliers of the

same products.2

6. Landowners, under the influence of the Corporate State ideas

propagated by Vargas, organized themselves into pyramid structures

of Rural Associations, Federations, and Confederations which were to


1See Juarez R. B. Lopes, "Some Basic Developments in Brazilian
Politics and Society," in New Perspectives of Brazil, Eric N. Bakla-
noff (ed.) (Nashville: Vanderbilt University Press, 1966), pp. 68-
75, for an excellent discussion of the "progressive dissolution of the
patrimonial order."

2Galjart, op.cit., p. 11, citing Julian M. Chacel, Precos e
Custos Na Agricultura Brasileira (Mimeographed) (Rio de Janeiro:
Centro Latino Americano de Pesquisas em Ciencias Sociaij, pp. 3-4.
A Rural, journal of the Brazilian Rural Society or SRB, Sao Paulo,
June, 1964, pp. 34-36, contains advertisements for warehouse and export
firms in Santos and Sao Paulo whose owners are also substantial land-
owners and SRB officers.









work with a series of autarchies or institutes, similar to the Com-

modity Credit Corporation in the United States, in an attempt to ease

the problems of excess supply and inadequate consumption of sugar, rice,

peanuts, wheat, cotton, beans, and yerba mate.1 The Institutes which

exist outside the regular channels of the Ministries and Departments,

are headed by boards or cabinets of government and producer represen-

tatives, and are often financed by a tax on these products or a

government subsidy.2

7. While the institutes promised to buy crops at a fixed minimum

price or to finance the harvest or marketing of crops, the minimum

prices have been subjected to manipulation by powerful commercial

groups--which some landowners belong to--and by uncontrolled inflation.

Moreover, in some cases such as sugar, if the Institutes do not pay

upon delivery, the sugar mills may pay the independent plantation sup-

pliers (fornecedores) only after the expenses of the mills have been

paid.3 Independent planters therefore find it difficult to remain


Phyllis Peterson, "Brazil, Institutionalized Confusion," in
Political Systems of Latin America, Martin Needler (ed.) (Princeton:
D. Van Nostrand Company, 1964), pp. 492-493.
La Palombara, op. cit., pp. 252-348, offers parallel clientele
and parentela relationships for Italian bureaucrats and agricultural-
industrial interest groups.

21n Florida, for example, the Governor appoints a Citrus Com-
mission made up of members who represent various facets of the
industry to regulate its marketing and quality standards, contract
advertising, inter alia, whose work is supported by a tax on each
crate of citrus shipped out of the state.

3lnterviews with Francisco Falcao and Benjamin de Moraes Ca-
valcanti, and meetings of the Sociedade Auxiliadora da Agricultura
de Pernambuco and the Associagao de Fornecedores de Acucar, Recife,
August 9, 1965.









financially independent unless they have commercial or banking links

through an informal panelinha or kinship network.1

In the face of these pressures, many landowners have reacted

violently to demands for improved arrangements from their peasant

tenants, employees, or the allies of peasant groups.

Given this violence, it is necessary to examine in the next

chapter the political and institutional structures in which land-

owner pressure groups function and in which peasant pressure groups

and their allies were to develop.


























1See Leeds, op. cit., pp. 383-384, and 393-401, for a theoretical
model of the panelinhas which generally consist of one or more land-
owners, a customs official, an insurance man, a lawyer or two, business-
men, an accountant, a municipio vereador. state or federal deputy, a
banker, and hopefully, a middle- or upper level official in one of the
Institutes regulating the marketing of an agricultural crop produced in
the area.












CHAPTER II


THE POLITICAL SYSTEM WITHIN WHICH
RURAL PRESSURE GROUPS FUNCTION


Introduction

As noted in Chapter I, Brazilian elites have developed a "system"

of conciliation and paternalism that persisted even with the introduc-

tion of the federal principle of government because disciplined polit-

ical parties with a continuing commitment to principles or ideology

never developed.l Because the parties did not aggregate interests,

many strong interest groups financed candidates for office who were

friendly to their interest in the National Congress, State Assemblies,

and the agricultural Institutes whose principal task was to obtain
2
subsidies and protection for these groups.

Brazil never had a tradition of liberalism in the Lockean or

Spencerian/Darwinian sense. Even when the governmental machinery

was weak, the state pursued an "interventionist" or mercantilist tradi-

tion in economic matters, uninhibited by laissez faire dogma. In James


Theodore Wyckoff, "Brazilian Political Parties," South Atlantic
Quarterly, Vol. LVI (June, 1957), pp. 281-298; Peterson, op. cit., pp.
463-509; Themistocles Cavalcanti and Reisky Dubnic, Comportamento
Eleitoral no Brasil (Rio de Janeiro: Fundacao Getdlio Vargas, 1964).

2Peterson, op. cit., p. 493; William W. Pierson and Federico G.
Gil, Governments of Latin America (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1957),
p. 358.








S. Rowe's words, "the characteristic tendency of private interests in

Brazil has not been to resist the state but to seek its favors."'

Getdlio Vargas linked old and contemporary Brazil through his

ability to conciliate the growing industrial interests without a major

struggle with the landowners, while at the same time accommodating the

new urban labor force and not having a major confrontation with

industry. In Rowe's words,

These accommodations, accomplished without political parties or the
free social process involving autonomous interest groups, depended
on the state's role, not as a mere arbiter, but as an active
participant in the affairs of each class. Paternalism was
ingeniously transplanted from the countryside to urban, middle-
class, and industrial activities The swelling ranks of
urban labor were presented with a ready-made union organization,
copied from Italian Corporate State legislation of 1926 which
was created and controlled by the Ministry of Labor. Organiza-
tionally weak but financially powerful by virtue of a mandatory
union tax levied on all workers, the unions did not serve as col-
lective bargaining agents but as social welfare agencies, brokers
in the patron-client relationship established between government
and worker.2

In the post 1945 period, a formal structure of representative

-democracy was revived and improved to some extent but nothing was

done to modify the social structure or the balance between agricultural


Rowe, "The 'Revolution' and the 'System,"' Part I, p. 8.
Alexander, Labor Relations in Argentina, Brazil, and Chile,
pp. 43-44 blames the lack of a sense of social responsibility among
the population on attitudes inherited from the past of a paternal-
istic large-landholding system; Vargas governed Brazil as if it were
one big plantation and blocked social reform and change as much as he
stimulated it through economic development.
Marvin Harris, Town and Country in Brazil (New York: Columbia
University Press, 1956), notes the population of Minas Velhas, in
Bahia, looked upon the Federal or State governments as a "Boss of
super proportions" whose task is "to give a push for progress" (Q.
Governo tem que dar impulse) rather than local government assisting
local agriculture and industry, health, and education.

2Rowe, "The 'Revolution' and the 'System,"' Part II, pp. 3-4.









and industrial interests. Key features of the "system" remained intact.

Among the most important was the [Consolidated Work Laws or CLT of
1943]. It provided not only a code of working conditions similar
to that found in industrializing countries eight-hour day, minimum
wage and social security institutes for several categories
of workers, but also a parallel structure of employer and
employee organizations--a pyramid rising from sindicatos [unions
or associations] at the local level and state federations to an
apex of national confederations, all linked to the Ministry of
Labor.]

Although the presidency of Juscelino Kubitschek de Oliveira

(1956-1960) was characterized by an industrial expansion and economic

growth that temporarily obscured reliance on the "system's" impedi-

ments to rational modernization, no basic re-arrangements of political

forces or unsettling ventures into agrarian reform or widespread

public education were undertaken.2 In order to gain support for his

Brasilia project, Kubitschek coddled industry in the South and of-

fered a new development agency, SUDENE, to the Northeast, originally

viewed by many politicians and observers as little more than a vast

new gravy train of public works for private individuals to supplement

the construction projects of DNOCS.3 In implementing his development

program, Kubitschek preferred to work outside the regular bureaucracy

and party channels, creating new autarchies and administrative agencies

thus avoiding the immobilism of the "system" without confronting it.4


1Rowe, op. cit., pp. 4-5.

2For example, Article 166 of the 1946 Constitution indicates
"primary schooling is obligatory and shall be administered only in
the national language is free to all; the official schooling
beyond primary schooling, shall be free to whoever proves lack or in-
sufficiency of means."
3Robock, Brazil's Developing Northeast, is probably the best
surce of information on the origins and history of these agencies.

4Rowe, op. cit., p. 12.









Following the spectacular resignation of his successor, Janio'

de Silva Quadros, in August, 1961, the eventual assumption of the

Presidency by Joao Belchior Marques Goulart ushered in a period of

recurrent crises and conspiracies which lasted until the April Revolu-

tion of 1964. There was much talk and some legislation and presiden-

tial decrees, yet the problems inherited from previous regimes--in-

flation, wage demands, agrarian pressures, commitments assumed under

the Alliance for Progress and trade deficits--were greater than

before. The "system" came under serious and sustained pressure both

from internal contradictions and external attack by various groups.

On the left especially, several radical student movements, Castro

supporters, the PCB and PC do B factions of the Communist Party, and

independent nationalist revolutionaries altered their subordinate

relationships with Goulart's Brazilian Labor Party (PTB) which had

been part of the "system." While each had tried to use the other for

its own ends prior to Goulart's assumption of the presidency, these

militants increased their bargaining power almost to that of an

"equal" whether "inside" the "system" as PTB Labor Ministry bureau-

crats or "outside" through the defiant organization of strikes and

disorders which Goulart did not want.] At the same time, various

radical and moderate reformist peasant groups began to act independently

of Goulart and the "system."

In examining the political system and sub-systems in which land-

owner interest groups function and in which peasant pressure groups


1Rowe, op. cit., pp. 14-15.









were to develop, it is necessary to examine the following in greater

detail to supplement what has already been said above: (I) the

traditional politics of the municipios, (2) the effect of the federal

structure on decision-making; (3) the structure and functions of the

Ministry of Labor, and (4) the nature of rural labor legislation.


The Traditional Politics of the Rural Municipio

Locally the municipio corresponds to the county in the United

States but, unlike the county in the United States, the Brazilian

county seat (sede) and other cities within a municipio, have no

separate corporate existence. Political life, prior to the assump-

tion of power by Vargas in 1930, was based on a series of alliances

and conflicts between big landowners, each with his following of

peasants, laborers, and cowboys who frequently voted irrespective of

ideology, programs, or laws restricting the voting to those who could

read and write.1 Occasionally, a few families came to dominate a

state so thoroughly that their influence lingers on today.2

Relations between the government and the local political boss

(chefe polftico) were based on compromise. If the boss supported the


1Smith, op. cit., pp. 569-582, and Blondel, op. cit., pp. 57-72,
discuss the bases of these alliance and enmities on kinship clans, real
or imagined affronts, and competition for power and land. Blondel, pp.
73-100, discusses the differing techniques used to register illiterate
voters, electoral fraud, and election costs to chefes polrticos in the
late 1940's.
2,A Campanha Eleitoral de 1958 no Piaui," Revista Brasileira de
Estudos Polfticos, No. 8 (April, 1960), pp. 33-34, points out all but
one of 32 members of the State Assembly in Piaui were linked by family
or political ties to the great landed proprietors of the state,
especially the Pires Ferreira.









winning party at the federal or state level, he could expect to in-

fluence (1) the appointment of people to the federal or state admin-

istrative posts in the municipio, e.g., police, revenue officials,

judges, and teachers; (2) the construction of a road, bridge, or other

public works which increased the value of his property or that of his

friends; (3) the allocation of agricultural credit; and (4) the

maintenance of the status quo.

A change in the status quo most frequently came if other land-

owner-bosses were linked to the dominant state or national government

coalitions or if groups of peasants and laborers gathered around

charismatic leaders such as Antonio Conselheiro of Os Sertoes fame1

or Padre Cicero of southern CearS who promised and delivered better-

ment of their lot. If the latter groups reached a certain size, set-

tled somewhere and cultivated the land, they sometimes became a nuisance

to the landowners in the region because they not only made potential

labor scarce but because they also withdrew it from their former em-

ployers. In this case, landowners or bosses would attempt to influence

the state or federal government to disperse or liquidate these groups.

Therefore it was important to be on good terms with the dominant bosses

of a region or a state if one's own power position was threatened by

competing landowners or aspiring landowner-bosses. Padre Cicero, un-

like Antonio Conselheiro, was never molested by government troops

because he already had intimate personal connections with the govern-

ment of the state and because he was a very powerful local boss and


1Euclides da Cunha, Rebellion in the Backlands. trans. Samuel
Putnam (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1944), is an
English-language translation of this story.









landowner in his own right who did not threaten the dominance bf other

bosses in other parts of Ceara, Piauf, or Pernambuco.]


The Effect of the Federal Structure
on Decision-Making

Interest group theorists writing of the tactics of influence in

the governmental process have recognized, at least implicitly, the

importance of localization and expansion strategies when they speak

of locating, developing, and improving "access"; Truman writes:

Access to one or more key points of decision in the government
becomes the facilitating intermediate objective of polit-
ical interest groups and includes efforts to exclude
competing groups from equivalent access or to set up new deci-
sion points access to whatever institution of government we
observe interest groups operating, the common feature of all
their efforts is the attempt to achieve effective access to points
of decision.

And even though David Easton indicates that systems theory as-

sumes that "the producers of outputs are unified and undifferentiated,"

he recognizes the possibility that a federal system or one with

"plural authorities" increase "significantly the probability of hetero-

geneity of outputs."


1Galjart, oD. cit., p. 8, and Barbosa da Silva, op. cit., pp. 181-
194.
Vilaqa and Albuquerque, op. cit., pp. 62-63, discuss the 1911
Alliance of the Coroneis by which "possible reciprocal invasions of the
redoubts" by different Northeastern bosses was ended because of the
work of Coronel Floro Bartolomeu and Padre Cicero.

2Truman, op. cit., p. 264.

3David Easton, A Systems Analysis of Political Life (New York:
John Wiley and Sons, 1965), pp. 452-453.
On p. 119, Easton indicated that demands "may move from and
through one of these subsystems to another, depending on the demand's
particular career," although he does not define what he meant by









The federal structure of Brazil offers many opportunities for

contestants in economic and political conflict to realize their goals

even though the formal structure has changed several times in the

last thirty-five years. With respect to the behavior of actos in

rural conflicts since 1955, it appears useful to posit the following

model:

1. Losers in a political conflict fought on one level are not
content to accept negative decisions if there is a pos-
sibility of becoming winners or of losing less by expanding
a conflict to a higher level of government.1

2. Winners make every effort to localize a conflict at a level
where their advantage is maximized, even though they may
continue to be winners as the conflict expands, i.e.,
expansion is a calculated risk which they do notwish to
assume, and

3. Where one chooses to articulate interests and make demands
in a hierarchy of governmental authority can make a dif-
ference in the outcome of a conflict.2

Thus, landowners, agricultural-industrialists, and rural sindicato

leaders sought to have controversies resolved at the level of authori-

tative decision-making which they perceived as most favorable to their


"subsystem" in this instance.
Louis H. Masotti, "Intergovernmental Relations and the Social-
ization of Conflict: Interest Articulation in the Politics of Educa-
tion," a paper delivered at the 1967 Midwest Conference of Political
Scientists, Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana, April 28, 1967,
p. 15, footnote 15, notes that Easton's examples of "subsystem" or
"demands" are confusing.
E. E. Schattschneider, The Semisovereign People (New York:
Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 1960), p. 3, argues that the most important
strategy of politics is concerned with who gets involved and who makes
decisions. On pp. 67-68, he states "he who determines what politics is
about runs the country, because the definitions of the alternatives is
the choice of conflicts and the choice of conflicts allocates power."

2Adapted from Masotti, op. cit., p. 6.









own preferences. Rural sindicato leaders are unable to mobilize as

many factors of power such as attitudes, violence, bureaucratic

expertise, time, and money, as landowners. Therefore they have tended

to seek outside help from the DRT or President of the Republic much

more frequently than the landowners or sugar industrialists who make

efforts to maintain the existing favorable power ration. There is

nothing inherently good or bad about the particular level at which a

conflict is fought or resolved:I it depends on whether the participants

are willing to accept decisions at that level, what their chances are

for getting more favorable treatment or fewer losses at another level,

and what resources are available to various participants to either

expand or localize a conflict.2


Interest Group Activities and Administrative
Decision-Making

Pressure groups have multiple formal access points to admin-

istrative agencies plus innumerable informal access points through

kinship, Danelinha. and clientele links.3 Landowner pressure groups


1For a discussion of the process and forms of conflict resolu-
tion or accommodation, see Joseph S. Vandiver, "Accommodation, As-
similation, and Acculturation," in Rural Sociology, Alvin L. Bertrand
(ed.) (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1958), pp. 320-333.

2See Masotti, op. cit., p. 6.

3peterson, op. cit., p. 493, suggests that "most groups make
their demands directly upon the administrative branch of government
rather than channeling them through the political party system and
the legislature."
Norman Blume, "Contemporary Brazilian Pressure Groups; A Case
Study," paper presented to the Ohio Association of Econbmists and
Political Scientists, Worthington, Ohio, April 1967, unnumbered pp.
12-13, found the following in a 1956 organizational chart of the
Brazilian government: 12 Ministries; 24 organs not ministries but





54

such as the SRB, CRB, and crop associations have used various ap-

proaches with the Ministries or Institutes dealing with agricultural

or rural concerns, e.g., Ministries of Agriculture, Labor, or Finance,

the Sugar and Alcohol or the Rice Institute, and the Bank of Brazil.

A preferred method of pressure groups is to place their members on

the work groups that develop proposed legislation -(projetos de leis).l

With a shortage of qualified people knowledgeable in the subject

matter, access to these working groups is not difficult for interest

groups with technical knowledge. Later," they attempt to place

members or family relatives in the key power centers within an agency,

especially around the Minister or President of an Instituto. If at

all possible, the pressure groups direct themselves to the Minister

for it is he who is the chief "signal caller" for the major plays or

policies of an agency. Reasons for this are two-fold:

1. Brazilian bureaucrats are by tradition reluctant to accept
responsibility, and,

2. The policies of the Minister of Institute President control
the promotional and career patterns of the civil servant
within an agency.2

The preferred technique is personal contact. Access is facili-

tated if the political views of the group and the minister are similar,


responsible to the President; 6 national corporations such as Petro-
bras; 48 autarchies, 4 of which are directly under the President; 20
mixed public-private economic entities which are directly responsible
to the President, 4 foundations, and 9 mixed agencies designed to
facilitate international agreements.

1John Rood and Frank Sherwood, "The 'Workhorse' Group in Brazil-
ian Administration," Perspectives of Brazilian Public.Administration.
Vol. I, the Comparative Series in Brazilian School of Public Administra-
tion, Gettllio Vargas Foundation, Rio de Janeiro, and The School of Public
Administration, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, June,
1963, pp. 47-56.
Ibid., and Blume, oP. cit., p. 13.









but access is dso managed by inviting the minister to a luncheon meet-

ing of the group leadership, to be the major speaker before a meeting

of the general membership, to be a panel discussant at a conference

sponsored by the group, or to be one of the lecturers in courses given

by or sponsored jointly by the group. In the more traditional areas

of the country, pressure is also brought upon a minister or one of his

subordinatesby a demonstration (passeata), which also involves.a risk

that group posture can be undermined if the demonstration is not big

enough.2 The Congressional friends of an agency are cultivated over

a period of time, beginning with some form of informal social contact

if no kinship or panelinha links are available. Once a friendship is

started, through the years it is solidified, reinforced, and enlarged

as an agency performs sundry types of favors for a Congressman and

vice versa including Congressional help for administrators in dif-

ficulty.3


The Ministry of Labor and Labor Disputes

Labor-management disputes have been the responsibility of the

Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare created by Vargas as his first

act in office on November 23, 1930. The Ministry is organized into

a series of departments which deal with the legal and technical aspects


]Blume, op. cit., pp. 13-14.

2Peterson, op. cit., p. 493, notes "groups do from time to time
come to the Congress to demonstrate, but this is a rather sporadic
type of pressure." Actually, the technique,albeit sporadic, is also
used at the State Assembly and Municipio level.

3BIume, oD. cit., p. 16.









of management-labor conflicts and has a series of Regional Delegates

for each or a group of states. It is among the largest of the fourteen

ministries because of its control over the Social Welfare funds created

by the Vargas regime. Although probably not created as a presiden-

tial agency for the settling of political disputes as opposed to labor

disputes, it also has come to perform this function, and to become a

desirable prize because of the numerous patronage possibilities for

members of the coalitions supporting a winning President.

The Regional Delegates operate in a changing political framework

and have to be attuned to the dominant political configurations of a

given moment. Although a labor movement has existed for many years,

collective bargaining has not been institutionalized in Brazil as it

has in the United States or even in Peru.3 The Regional Delegates,

or DRT's, in theory function to promote harmonious worker-management

relations but in practice their activities in the rural sector have

developed only since the organization of rural sindicatos in the 1960's.

The Ministry and the DRT's prefer to avoid as much direct responsibility

as possible not only because of the political feedback which could


1Anuario Estatlstico. 1961, p. 417, indicates 40,609 persons oc-
cupied positions in Institutes and autarquias controlled by the MTPS
out of a total 87,410 persons working for such autarquias in the federal
government.

2Rowe, "The 'Revolution' and the 'System,"' Part II, p. 5,
criticizes the "right of the Ministry to approve--and even to make--
appointments of union leaders, leading to an aristocracy of peleqos
(union leaders more dependent on the government than on their own
labor following)."

3Jbid., and Alexander, Labor Relations in Argentina, Brazil,
and Chile. For a comparison, see Payne, Labor and Politics in Peru,
pp. 56-75, which discusses the highly centralized Peruvian system.









endanger their career and promotional possibilities, but also because

of the limited resources of the DRT's who fear the burden of the

Ministry's work.

Urban or rural worker interest groups cannot function without

formal recognition by the Ministry.of Labor and Social Welfare (MTPS).2

This gives the Minister or his DRT considerable power in regulating

sindicato policies and leadership composition. Although the Ministry's

role is highly political, most DRT's and upper echelon Labor Ministry

officials like to maintain a fiction that objective criteria and not

political criteria are the bases for decisions in an agricultural or

industrial conflict. If a dispute involves wage demands, officials

present their decisions as based on a rise in the cost of living over

a recent period of time and the "real needs" of the workers. However,

since not all workers receive the benefits of these decisions or their

enforcement, this reasoning is flimsy indeed.

Although collective bargaining was common in some urban labor-

management situations, collective bargaining was not common in conflicts

involving rural sugar, coffee, or cacao workers until 1963 when the

Rural Worker Statute was promulgated.


Interviews with Haroldo Veloso Furtado, DRT, Recife, June 4,
1965 and Amadeus Barreto, DRT, Salvador da Bahia, May 19, 1965. Barreto
has been DRT in Bahia for more than five years because of his friend-
ship with Juracy Magalhaes, former Interventor, Governor, and federal
Minister--as well as UDN party leader.

2Alexander, Organized Labor in Latin America, p.. 72, and Freitas
Marcondes, "Social Legislation in Brazil," pp. 382-399.








Rural Labor Leqislation

The gradual extinction of slavery which culminated in 1888 with

the freeing of the slaves by the Lei Aurea (Golden Law) and their sub-

sequent flight from agriculture, created an acute need for new rural

workers and sources of food commodities. These two needs gave rise to

the current of immigration of the last one hundred years. Most of the

laws affecting rural labor were ineffectual or not respected until the

Consolidated Work Laws (Consolidacao das Leis do Trabalho or CLT) were

promulgated on May 1, 1943.1 Although Vargas excluded rural workers

and small family farmers from most Estado Novo legislation under a

bargain with large landowner leaders,2 certain CLT provisions are

expressly applicable to rural workers: minimum wage legislation was

extended to rural areas (Article 76-129); the right to annual vaca-

tions (Article 129-147); the right to prior notice of dismissal or

termination of a labor contract (Articles 487-491); and payment in

kind was modestly regulated by Article 506. Nevertheless, many

J. V. Freitas Marcondes, First Brazilian Legislation Relating
to Rural Labor Unions (Gainesville: School of Inter-American Studies,
University of Florida, June, 1962), discusses Decree 979 of January 6,
1903, and Decree 6,532 of June 20, 1907.
See also Robert E. Price, "Rural Unionization in Braz.il" (Madison:
University of Wisconsin, The Land Tenure Center, August 1964) (Mimeo-
graphed), pp. 3-12, for a chronological description of such legisla-
tion.

2Note the similarity in the United States. See Robert D.
Tomasek, "The Migrant Problem and Pressure Group Politics," Journal
of Politics. Vol. XXIII, No. 2 (May, 1961), pp. 302-303, who
indicates that the American Farm Bureau Federation joined with the
National Grange and specialized farm groups to prevent application
of social security and social welfare legislation to migrant domestic
and Mexican labor. In fact,, even in 1967, most migratory farm
laborers are not covered by the provisions of minimum wage or social
security legislation.








observers have acidly criticized the Ministry of Labor and the social

security institutes for not enforcing these provisions in many cases.]

Although the CLT and other legislation brought short-run benefits

to the 1,500,000 organized workers in a labor force of about 25 mil-

lion persons, the overwhelming mass of rural and urban workers'were

not represented in the national government or by trade unions of one

type or another.2

In early February 1954, Joao Belchior Marques Goulart, then

Minister of Labor, promulgated a decree (No. 7038) to establish

rural sindicatos which met with heavy opposition from the CRB. As

Mary Wilkie points out:

They sent a memorandum on the matter to the National Security
Council stating among other things 'that apart from political
reasons there is nothing to justify rural syndicalism' .
'the rural proletariat is not sufficiently mature to under-
stand the political rights that Minister Joao Goulart wants
to grant them' and 'the Minister of Labour's action is
imprudent. 3

Facing opposition also from substantial portions of the military of-

ficer corps and the middle class because of a proposal to raise the

minimum wage 100 per cent from 1,200 cruzeiros to 2,400 cruzeiros per

month, Goulart resigned on February 22, 1954.4

Price, op. cit., pp. 7-8, and Rowe, "The 'Revolution' and the
'System,"' Part II, p. 5.

2Rowe, op. cit., p. 5.

3Mary Wilkie, "A Report on Rural Sindicates in Pernambuco," Rio
de Janeiro, Centro Latinoamericano de Pesquisas em Ciencias Sociais,
April 1964 (mimeographed).

4Goulart was appointed in June, 1953. Both he and War Minister
Santo Cardoso resigned after manifestations of dissent from middle-
level officers and university graduates especially who felt their
status threatened by Goulart's wage proposals. Some officers also
felt Goulart was making preparations to stage a coup which would continue