Racism and whiteness in Brazil
This paper is a contribution to understand the mechanisms of racism in Brazil through the study of whiteness. In part one I introduce some of the most important theoretical contributions of critical whiteness studies, focusing on how whiteness has been defined as a condition of privilege. In part two I present a brief history of the role played by whiteness in the formation of Brazil as a nation with particular attention for the theory of branqueamento and for the specific characteristics of Brazilian color classification. This historical overview helps understand how whiteness became and still is a social position of structural advantage. In the last part I discuss some aspects of my ethnography on whiteness among men of upper-middle class self-identifying as white living in Rio de Janeiro. More specifically I analyze how class is perceived by them as the register to define their experience of whiteness.
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