Lombrosians and lombrosianism in Brazil
Cesare Lombroso and his "positive school" of criminal anthropology were highly influential in the formation of the social sciences and ethnographic sensibility in Brazil. Rather than carefully read or analysed, Lombroso and his school were cited, interpreted and somewhat creolized according to modalities specific to the socio-racial context of Brazil, revealing significant historical entanglements between social scientists in Italy and Latin America (as shown by the sojourns of the Italian scholars Guglielmo Ferrero, Gina Lombroso and Enrico Ferri in 1907-1910). The complex and never passive process of reception and reinterpretation of Lombrosian ideas was characterized by a dynamic of attraction and rejection. This article examines the reception and influence of "Lombrosianism" in Brazil, showing how and why such influence gradually vanished in the 1930s, to disappear after the Second World War.
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