NPR’s poor analysis of Brazilian slavery

Lourdes Garcia-Navarro‘s recent report (complete with some interesting pictures from the end of the neo-classical period in Brazil) for National Public Radio is precisely the sort of “Social Justice Warrior” (SJW) analysis of Brazilian slavery that one would expect from the US mainstream media. It focuses on the opinions of a Black Leftist activist, a slavery researcher and the tragic story of a Black nanny who killed a White baby. The entire slant is negative and, of course, leads to the predictable conclusion that “there still needs to be a profound change in the country.”

Garcia-Navarro’s piece takes a potentially fascinating subject and reduces it to a Leftist slogan, essentially. It is feminist, anti-White and radically egalitarian – as one would expect. It ignores the paternalistic nature of Brazil’s plantation society as documented by Dr. Stuart Schwartz and many other leading mainstream academics. It also ignores the great harm done to Brazilian society, including its Black population, by egalitarian revolutionaries. The article simply presents the sophomoric SJW understanding of a complex issue and uses it as a call for more Leftist-Progressive change.


Brazil was established as the first true plantation society in the New World by Portuguese settlers. They brought the plantation model of colonization from the Portuguese and Spanish sugar isles of the eastern Atlantic where the plantation system had developed into a recognizable form from its roots in the Levant and Mediterranean basin. Brazil thrived under the neo-classical values of the plantation system, which was centered in the northeast of the country. It was considered an extension of the “Golden Circle,” a term used by many nineteenth century Southerners for the plantation civilization of the Western Hemisphere. In the 1860s and 70s Brazil welcomed Southern refugees who fled the military occupation of Dixie following the US conquest of the independent South. Monarchy, the plantation order and tradition survived in Brazil until the 1880s and the country was a rapidly growing power in the world. A Modernist, republican revolution which overthrew an elderly and lethargic monarch brought about the end of Brazil’s golden age and set in motion powerful egalitarian forces which have upset civilization in the country, brought corrupt Left-wing radicals to power and resulted in rampant crime and extreme poverty in many once prosperous regions.

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