All books are the result of a collective undertaking. Anthologies such as this
volume, which engaged seventeen contributors from Europe, North America,
and South America, amplify this collective process in a substantial way.
We owe our findings to hundreds, if not thousands, of people who have shared
ideas and generated the information that helped shape the texts included in this
volume. Our informants, research assistants, and many people who produced
the data and studies employed in our assessments played an essential role in this
enterprise. Moreover, during this time, we were all sustained—in different
ways—by our families, friends, colleagues, and various host institutions. The
book’s final production, in turn, owes much to a team effort carried out by Duke
University Press.
In all this, a special word of gratitude should be made to two academic cen-
ters that secured funding for this edition: the unesco Chair in Territorial De-
velopment and Education for the Countryside of the Universidade Estadual de
São Paulo (unesp) and the Brazil Study Program at the University of Oxford.
Here, we are particularly obliged to Bernardo Mançano Fernandes and Timo-
thy J. Powell.
Were it not for this broad and variegated support network, this anthology
would have never been possible. It is with a warm heart, therefore, that we ex-
tend our appreciation to all the people involved in this vast undertaking. As
the convener, editor and translator of this volume, it is my responsibility to ac-
knowledge some of the individuals and institutions that helped make this proj-
ect possible.
Tracing the genealogy of most books can be a rather difficult task, given
the assorted web of ideas and experiences that can shape these literary works.
Though centered on Brazil, this volume is in many ways a globalized text. Its
contributors come from six different countries: Brazil, the United Kingdom, the
United States, Mexico, Argentina, and Paraguay. In addition, editing this an-
thology involved tasks that crisscrossed many longitudes and latitudes around
the globe. The book was conceived in Oxford, England, prepared in Washing-
ton, D.C., and Caacupé, Paraguay, and published in Durham, North Carolina.
The city of Oxford offered a lovely setting for two crucial moments in the
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