O Retorno Impossível: Charles Darwin e a Escravidão no Brasil

Antonio Carlos Sequeira Fernandes, Vera Lucia Martins de Moraes
2008 Anuário do Instituto de Geociências  
The presence of traveling naturalists and foreign artists in Brazil, both in its colonial period and in the imperialperiod, largely enriched the amount of information available about the country. Charles Darwin was one of those travelerswho, with a simple and objective approach, contributed to this knowledge by pointing out the exuberance of our fl oraand fauna just like the others had done and more emphatically. Unlike many travelers, however, he scarcely referred tothe political and social
more » ... ues of the land he visited. From his main texts and correspondence one can obtain little but notless useful remarks about that; worthy of note is Darwin's pointing out the situation of slavery in Brazil, emphasizing theill-treatment that captives were subjected to, particularly in Rio de Janeiro. With a brief report on the main aspects of itsorigins and on the presence of Darwin in Brazil, this paper studies the treatment given to the slaves in the fi rst decades ofthe 19th century taking into account his reports and the negative feeling that would lead him never to want to come backto the country whose natural beauty he had praised so much.
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