Novos Estudos Cebrap, 93, julho 2012: 101-121. A shorter version of "Os três ciclos da sociedade e do Estado".
The history of independent Brazil may be divided in three major political cycles, and, since 1930, we can distinguish five political pacts or class coalitions. Since 1930 these pacts have been nationalist. Only in the 1990s the Brazilian elites surrendered to the neoliberal hegemony. Yet, since the mid 2000s, they are recovering their idea of nation. In fact, the main claim of the essay is that Brazilian elites and the Brazilian society are “national-dependent”, i.e., they are ambiguous and contradictory, requiring an oxymoron to define them. The elite is dependent because it often sees itself as “European” and its people as inferior. But Brazil is big enough and around its domestic market there are enough common interests to make the Brazilian nation less ambiguous. Today, it searches for a synthesis between the two last political cycles – between social justice and economic development in the framework of democracy.