Research Seminar 3rd February
'Brazil and United States in a Time of War: the Good Neighborhood Policy and Inter-American
Relations during World War Two' - Fernanda Rabelo (Instituto Federal de Educação, Ciência e Tecnologia Fluminense, Brazil)
This paper highlights how Latin America and particularly Brazil have become places of interest in tracing the international effort to eliminate Nazi ideology and modify Inter-American Relations in a time of war, before and during World War II (1939-45). In 1930s and 1940s Brazil, politics were to change dramatically through the new government’s focus on development and industrialization under Getulio Vargas (1930-1945). Brazil's political relationship with other countries underwent parallel transformations as part of the effort to show the country's economic potential to the rest of the world, and especially in the Americas. The study of one of the most remarkable Brazilian leaders, Getulio Vargas, is crucial to understand these changes in internal and foreign policy in Brazil. His government was marked by a discourse of development and democracy, with the introduction of numerous social policies to support the population, whilst maintaining strong nationalist and coercive political structures. However, as this study will show, both the international interests of the United States in aligning with Latin American countries prior to World War II as well as the concern to "eliminate" Nazi ideology, which had spread through Latin American interests in aligning with Germany, played a key role in delimiting political and economic directions in Brazil and Latin America. Known as the “good neighborhood policy”, this re-direction of Inter-American relations, has been the subject of many historical studies in Brazil, which highlight the efforts of Brazil’s and United States’ governments to create a new relationship and image in the continent.