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Negative Rights: Racial segregation and the law in 20th-century Brazil

Though Brazil and the United States share a history of deep racial inequalities and discrimination, they have pronounced differences in frameworks of civil rights.  This presentation places those patterns of rights in conversation, and focuses on ways in which twentieth-century Brazilians who were Black made claims in a context of negative rights. 

Jerry Dávila is the Jorge Paulo Lemann Chair in Brazilian History and Executive Director of the Illinois Global Institute at UIUC. Dávila’s research focuses on the influence of racial thought and social movements on public policy in Brazil.  He is the author of Hotel Trópico: Brazil and the Challenge of African Decolonization (Duke, 2010), Diploma of Whiteness: Race and Public Policy in Brazil (Duke, 2003), and Dictatorship in South America (Wiley, 2013), and also co-authored A History of World Societies, 11th ed. (Bedford-St. Martin’s, 2018).

NOTE: Due to the CUPE 3903 labour disruption, the in-person event will now be hosted at the University of Toronto Jackman Humanities Building, Room 100, 170 St. George St., across from the St. George Subway station, from 1 to 2:30 p.m.

To register to attend in person, visit:

The event will be accessible via Zoom for those who cannot attend in person. To register to attend virtually, visit


Feb 29 2024


1:00 pm - 2:30 pm


University of Toronto Jackman Humanities Building, Room 100
170 St. George St., Toronto


History Department

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