Twenty Years or Representative Democracy in Brazil. 1945-1964. (1)

Simon Schwartzman

Paper presented to the sesion on " Quantitative and Mathematical Methods in Political Scince", 8th World Congress of Political Science, Munich, August 31st - Sept. 5, 1970. Published as "Veinte años de democracia representativa en Brasil, 1945-1964," Revista Latinoamericana de Ciencia Política (FLACSO, Santiago, II, 1, Abril, 1971, 24-46; "Twenty years of representative democracy in Brazil,", in H. Alker, K. Deutsch and A. H, Stoetzel, Mathematical Approaches to Politics, Amsterdam, Elsevier Scientific Publishing Co., 137-164, 1973.

1. Introduction : Background

A central issue in Brazilian politics today is the possibility of reopening the political system, which was partially "closed" after the fall of João Goulart in 1964, an further restricted by the so-called ''Institutional Act n. 5" of December 1968. The political regime up to 1964 was presidencialist and multi-party, with direct balloting for the executive at the National, State and local levels, and proportional representation to the legislative bodies also at three levels. Suffrage was open and mandatory to all literates above 18. After 1964 there was no change in the extension of suffrage, however the political parties were dissolved and replaced by a two party-system, and hundreds of politicians lost their political rights and mandates. Elections for the presidency became indirect, and this pattern was also extended to the state level. The new arrangement could have meant an increase in power for the legislature, if it were not for the strict control exercised by the central military government upon its majority party combined with the transfer of much of the formal decision power from the Congress to the Executive. The reopening of the political system is an explicit goal of the government as well as for almost all sectors of the country 's public opinion, but the extension and meaning of this opening is generally unclear; it can go from a minimum of ending the discretionary powers of the central government assumed in December 1968, to the reintroduction of political rules similar to those which existed from 1945 to 1964.

The 45-64 period, which is also known as the "Second Republic", was the time of greatest political opening and enfranchisement in Brazilian history, and a coherent view of what happened in this twenty years period is still to be produced. Interpretations of this recent history are at the roots of the contemporary debate on political opening in Brazil, since floe this is the fullest and most recent experience of political openness in the country's memory. A central question is to decide whether the 1964 movement was reversible or not. Was it a historical accident which could be reversed or did it come as a consequence of an irreversible process of change in the political system preventing the reestablishment if its previous constitutional framework?(2). The thesis in this paper is that the latter formulation is more correct, and that the debate on political openness will not be fruitful unless it brings to bear new conceptions of political participation which are still unknown in Brazilian history and experience.

It is a further contention of this paper that Brazilian politics must be studied less in terms of a continuum of left-right orientations, or a continuum from traditional to modern life, attitudes, values and participation, than in terms of a line of cleavage wich I call "representation vs. cooptation".This cleavage has to do with the relative independence of the economy vs. the relative independence of the state apparatus vis-a-vis the rest of the society. It is peculiar to Brazil that this division separates the State of São Paulo, which is the most modern and industrialized section of the country, from the rest of the political system. São Paulo is also the largest state in the country, and we shall compare it systematically in the following with other states : Minas Gerais, which is the second largest state and typifies the "cooptation" system, and the State of Guanabana, which includes the city of Rio de Janeiro and was the country's capital up to 1960 when Brasilia was inaugurated. Table 1 gives some general figures which help to see the differences between these states, as compared with the rest of the country, Data on urbanization, income and industrialization are, as usual, correlated with the standard measures of modernity, in terms of education, exposure to mass media, and welfare.

2. Political cooptation and political representation in brazil

I do not intend to derive the concepts of "cooptation" and "representation" from the data I shall present, but rather to show how this conceptualization could help to understand their otherwise unrecognizable patterns. It is necessary, therefore, to give a short summary of what I mean by these terms and how I see their use for the Brazilian context.

There are many roads to these concepts.One possibility is to start from the attempt of S. M. Lipset and S. Rokkan to use Parson's functional categories for the analysis of the European party systems(3). Their study is concerned with the internal structure of the Integration quadrant of the AGIL system, and the different cleavages are conceptualized as functions of the groups' relative position regarding the A-I (cross-local functional) and G-L (center-periphery) axes. Since the I quadrant is the functional locus for some special kinds of interactions between the other three functional subsystems, it is necessary to know the intensity and relative independence of the processes being developed in each of these systems, and try to predict some characteristics of the I subsystem accordingly. Changes in A can be considered as changes in the process of economic development, changes in G as a process of transformation and growth of the state structure, changes in L as transformations in society's values and motivations (which are usually measured in terms of changes in rates of urbanization and education, and are analyzed as a process of "modernization"), and finally changes in I are essentially those related to the transformations in the structure of social and political participation.

This means essentially that the structure of political participation is seen as an intervening variable between the State arid the processes of economic development and modernization, which gives us four types of participation according to the direction of the arrow (table 2).

It is necessary, for those acquainted with some facts of Brazilian politics, to say a few words about how the political parties and movements can be described in terms of this cleavage, adding a second dimension distinguishing between those oriented towards the expansion of the political system (which corresponds roughly to the concept of "left") and these oriented towards its maintenance or restriction ("center" and "right"). Table 3 gives the general picture, and the reader can skip the remainder of this section if he is not concerned with the interpretation of Brazilian historical facts.

The consideration of the State structure as an independent variable seems to be a must in the analysis of Brazilian politics which is often disregarded. I have argued for this need in another place(4), and I shall only list here some very general features of Brazilian history which support this assertion. It is important to know that the Brazilian political structure is the historical heir of the Portuguese colonial administration, and that this was accentuated by the arrival of the Portuguese family to Brazil in 1808 in the wake of Bonaparte's occupation of Portugal. Formal independence in 1822 was a consequence of the Portuguese's attempt to bring Brazil back to the colonial status, and the new Brazilian government was headed by the son of Portugal's King. Political cleavage in early independent Brazil was around the Portuguese vs. "criollo" aristocracy, and was expressed in terms of centralization vs. decentralization of the political system. The final outcome was the dominance of the centralization tendencies, and the existence of a huge and well installed government structure helps to explain both the political stability and the geographical integrity of Brazil in the XIX Century. The peculiarity of this situation becomes very clear when we compare Brazil with Argentina, and see how the separation from Peru freed Argentina from the costs and benefits of a huge and expensive governmental bureaucracy. The push of the Argentinian "generation of the 80's" towards economic growth was paralleled in Brazil by the efforts of the São Paulo coffee growers to bring in European immigrants, to introduce modern patterns of free labor to the plantations and to start, in the beginning of the XX Century, an aggressive policy of "valorization" of international prices of their product. In Argentina the emerging social and economic forces were able to organize and direct the state according to their interests, but in Brazil the pre-existing governmental structure was, from their point of view, a dead weight against which they had to fight(5). The beginning of the Republic meant a relatively high degree of decentralization and local autonomy for the States. In 1930 a new strong government was installed, and in 1932 São Paulo was the site of a popular revolt against federal intervention which was defeated. From that time on the great paradox of Brazilian politics becomes progressively cleaner. São Paulo was the beneficiary of an industrial expansion which started in Brazil after the World Crisis of 1929, but this occurred along with a growing alienation of that region from the center of political life.

The Vargas regime, which lasted from 1930 to 1945, arose from a split in the entente between the state oligarchies (which was being scattered by rebellions of young officers), unrest in the urban centers, and the rigidity of its aging leaders. With the new regime the young military came to power, but as leaders of a civilian government. Vargas never betrayed his origins as the political son of Borges de Medeiros (oligarchic leader in the South) but the dependence of local oligarchies towards the central government became stronger as a result of his ascendancy. The new regime was concerned with the rationalization of the state, industrialization and modernization, and was able to feel the need to create the conditions to coopt the emerging urban working class in the welfare and trade union systems which were created and directed by the government. The Vargas regime fell in 1945 in the wake of democratic movements which swept Latin America after World War II. At this moment everything was prepared for a political resurrection which did, indeed, occur as soon as the political game was declared open.

It seams proper to characterize the two political parties created by Vargas in terms of cooptation. The first of these parties was called the "Social Democratic Party" (PSD). It was formed by the state and local leaders who had been on good terms with the dictatorship. The term "coronelismo" is used in the Brazilian political literature to characterize a type of rural boss who derives his local strength from his access to patronage at the governmental level, and can carry the local votes to his party(6). The "coronel" cannot survive without access to government, and it is therefore not surprising that the party which put these leaders together became the biggest party in the country. A similar structure of cooptation was developed in the urban areas, through the Labour Party (PTB), to which Vargas affiliated himself. His instrument of political control was the Ministry of Labour and the trade unions which were politically and financially dependent upon the government. The welfare system was developed in close integration with the Labour. Ministry, and this became a powerful instrument for political patronage.

In both political parties, electoral power derived from access to governmental positions and decision centers. Ideological issues were obviously secondary, and the major interests political leaders conveyed were those referring to more positions, facilities and sinecures from the government. It would be too simplistic to say that these were the only goals and purposes of the parties. At the policy-making level more or less well defined goals of economic development, administrative efficiency and welfare were present. But those goals had little, of not contradictory, relations with the structure created to co-opt and to handle their electoral support. The opposition to this system came from different sources. There was a liberal opposition to Vargas which combined urban middle classes with members of local rural leadership which lost their access to the centers of decision in the 'coronelisme" system(7). There were members of the army which were impatient and intolerant with the price the government was paying for its maintenance in terms of political patronage. There were members of the working class which sought more militance and ideological involvement of the trade unions, and more pro-labour policies of the central government. There were military, intellectual and working-class groups which sought to orient the country's policy towards a more nationalist foreign policy.

It is possible to summarize all this in terms of how the access to government was obtained or sought for. The cooptation system was either considered adequate, or in need of expansion, or in need of restrictions. What all of them had in common, roughly speaking, was that their political influence derived either from control of governmental agencies, or access to the government for a politics of patronage, of finally from their demands for more access for some groups and sectors.

This is not, however, what politics is all about. When an economic system is dynamic, and social groups are organized and structured, they get together politically to influence political decisions that have some bearing in their share of society's goods, which are not owned patrimonialistically by the government or its bureaucracy. This kind of politics is what I am calling "politics of representation", and it is possible to think that the liberal regimes of the Western World are the better known, but not necessarily the only conceivable arrangement for its manifestation. Its essential condition is economic and/or organizational autonomy and self-reference, and in Brazil it developed most in the São Paulo area. It appeared often as liberal ideologies which defined governmental intervention in politics, economics and welfare as absolute evil; or as a trade union movements based more in autonomous organization than in access to the Ministry of Labour and which had wage issues as a central concern. Finally, it developed as populist movements which included elements of personal charisma corresponding to less structure and autonomy at the grass roots, but also to less direct control of patronage in the Central government. We can look back at table 3, and understand better how the political picture was like, up to 1964.

3. The Changing voting patterns: Participation

The first outstanding characteristic of the Second Republic was the substantial increase in voting turnout in comparison with the period of before 1930. Presidencial elections before 1930 tended to have single candidates, and the introduction of competition dit not alter the low turnout, as can be seen by the figures in table 4. These data are still incomplete, and any conclusion is tentative, but the general pattern is clear.

The year of 1910 witnessed the first competitive election in the Republic, with a turnout of about 1.6% of the total population In 1914 turnout was 2.14, but in 1926, not shown in the table, there was a single candidate, and the turnout figure fell to 2.06. Only in 1930, at the brink of the Vargas revolution, did turnout rise to above five percent. This was the first emergence of intra-state competition and in the city of Rio de Janeiro the winning candidate received only 51% of the votes. The general rule, however, was that the States had single party systems, and political cleavages, if any, did not cross state borders(8). By 1945, however, the number of actual voters had risen to 13.4% of the total population and continued to grow steadily up to 20% by the early sixties (table 5).

These figures on turnout must be considered in the light of the disenfranchisement of the illiterate (about 50% of the population) and the population's age structure (about 50% under 18). Since to register and. to vote is mandatory, abstention or lack of registration can create all sorts of difficulties in legal and bureaucratic procedures. It is expected, therefore, that turnout grows with increasing urbanization and education, and the rate of actual over registered voters is little more than a reflection of the updating of the electoral lists. The same is not true, however, for blank and null votes, which are a clear indication of political disaffection. The increase from 2.3 % to 21.1% of these invalid votes is a first indication of the progressive failure of the political system to correspond to the constituent's values and aspirations.

The picture becomes still clearer if we begin to compare the states of São Paulo, Minas Gerais and Guanabara with the global figures for Brazil, as in tables 6, table 7 and table 8.

Looking first at table 6, we note a fluctuation in the turnout. Yet the differences between states are really not surprising if we keep in mind their different levels of literacy. The decreases of 1960 can be explained in terms of a harder control of the literacy requirement, while the substantial increase in 1966 is due to stricter enforcement of the obligation to vote. It does not seem correct to interpret, therefore, that the increases in turnout imply the incorporation of relatively marginal and deprived groups to the political system. Hence the systematic increase in the rates of invalid votes from 1945 to 1966 (table 7) (with the singular exception of the presidencial election of 1960) cannot be understood as a consequence of the progressive enfranchisement of less able and qualified voters. It would be more correct to interpret this change in exactly the opposite direction; namely the growing disaffection of the more urban and industrialized sectors towards a political system based on the cooptation of rural votes and urban paternalism and patronage.

A look at the rank-order correlations of the percentage of blank votes cast in Brazil and the three key States shown in table 9 confirms this interpretation. The national variance is strictly paralleled by the variations in the urban center of Guanabara followed by São Paulo and Minas. If we look back at table 6 we will see that turnout is extremely stable at a relatively low level in Minas; and the general stability of the State makes it marginal to the kind of changes that were led by Guanabara.

It is remarkable, therefore, that the same pattern of inter-correlations does not appear for the presidential elections. Guanabara seems to follow an independent line which may be explained by its general characteristics as an urban center, while São Paulo and Minas hold a consistent opposite pattern. Being a city-state, characterized by high levels of urbanization, education and non-agricultural employment, it is understandable that Guanabara is on the extreme of a continuum which has Minas at the other end and São Paulo (which has, in spite of its high levels of development, substantial rural areas and primary economy) in the middle. The pattern for Presidential elections, however, cannot be explained in these terms. It is necessary to consider the political marginality of São Paulo in the overall system of political cooptation to see this, we should now proceed to examine the content of the election returns in this period (table 10).

4.The changing voting patterns: cleavages.

Table 11 gives a first picture of the political cleavages at the Presidential level. The alliance between the two Vargas parties, PSD-PTB, won all the elections except in 1960. Only in 1950 there was a split in the alliance, due to a personal move from Vargas who imposed his name and was not accepted by the political leadership of the PSD (the figures in parentheses for 1950 correspond to the votes given to Cristiano Machado, the PSD candidate). Vargas' victory in 1950 is an indication not only of his personal charisma, but also of his direct command of the political clientele over and above the leadership of its major party. His major source of support was, however, urban and popular. The split within PSD in Minas Gerais gave 32 % of the votes to Vargas and is a reflection of the predominantly rural society and political structure in this state. It was quite clear that the PSD allegiance to Vargas was due less to preferences than to the need to remain close to the source of power (table 11).

The participation of São Paulo in the alliance was made through the person of Adhemar de Barros, formerly Vargas' caretaker in the State. In 1950 Barros felt strong enough to create his own political party, the PSP, and in 1955 and 1960 he was an independent candidate for the Presidency, carrying Rio and São Paulo in 1955, but getting only about 25 % of the national votes. It is very clear that Barros was always a regional candidate which did not fit the national cleavage between PSD-PTB and UDN.

The election of 1960 was the first and only victory of São Paulo, with Jânio Quadros. Quadros emerged without the support of a party structure, and climbed step by step from the local government of the city of São Paulo to the Presidency. His appeal was personal, his issues were honesty and severity, and his personal figure was unkempt and in contradiction with the broomstick which was his electoral symbol. To pass from local to national politics he had to be absorbed by the UDN ticket, even if he had little in common with this party. He was able, when in government, to attract the opposition of almost everybody, and resigned from office after eight months, leaving the country in a crisis from which it would not recover.

The election of Quadros did not mean that the cleavage between the cooptation vs. the representation systems inclined towards São Paulo, but rather that it had been superseded by a new cleavage between the tendencies towards expansion vs. the tendencies towards restriction of the political system. Balloting for the Vice President was done independently, and João Goulart, the VP candidate from the PSD-PTB coalition, defeated his opponent, who was well identified as a man from UDN. The PSD-PTB presidential candidate was e General identified with left-nationalistic groups, and his acceptance for the PSD was an indication of the party's inability to articulate a winning candidate of its own. General Lott was a loser on many accounts. His surprisingly high position in the State of Minas Gerais is really an indication of the PSD's difficulty in acting independently from official determinations emanating from the central government.

The erosion of the PSD-PTB hegemony can be better analyzed through table 12, where data for congressional elections are displayed. The PSD never ceased to be the biggest party, but its relative size fell progressively as time passed by. Alliances and coalitions of all kinds tended to absorb up to 50 % of the congressional votes. An analysis of these coalitions is still to be made, but table 13 presents both the data on coalitions and an attempt to place them under the major dominant party for the three states of São Paulo, Minas Gerais and Guanabara. This attempt is of course provisional, and should be backed by a detailed analysis of the political processes in each State which would be out of place here. It is enough to note here how the three parties of the cooptation system disappeared completely from São Paulo in 1962 as independent political entities.

The disappearance of the big national parties in São Paulo was followed not by an increase in political regionalism, but, paradoxically, by a progressive nationalization of State politics. If we look at the Congressional alliances in the State, we notice that in the 1958 election the PSP entered in an alliance with the PSL even though the former was clearly dominant (it had 411,510 votes for the state Congress, as against 181,700 for the PSD). In 1962 the PSD-PSP alliance remained coming in second to an alliance of two regional parties (Christian Democrats and MTR). The alliance also benefitted from the political inheritance of Jânio Quadros in the State. In Rio the Labour Party entered in an alliance with the socialists, and received the support of the illegal but active Communist party. Only in Minas Gerais did the party configuration remain remarkably stable, with a coalition of the small PTB with the still smaller PSP in the State (table 13).

The 1962 Congressional election was characterized both in Rio and São Paulo by the presence of strong candidates who concentrated the votes. Leonel Brizola, from the PTB-PSB alliance, concentrated 628% of the votes of his legend, while Amaral Netto, from the UDN, got 475% of his party's votes. Emílio Carlos, in São Paulo, got 44% of the votes of his PTN-MTR alliance. In Minas Gerais, however, the most popular candidate, Sebastião Paes de Almeida of the PSD, got only 80 thousand votes (as against 269 thousand for Brizola, 134 thousand for Amaral Netto and 154 thousand for Emílio Carlos), comprising only 10.6% of his party's votes. The concentration of votes in Legislative elections is a sign of ideological polarizations which took place in the urban centers, but was characteristically absent in Minas Gerais. During this period congressional representation was proportional to a state's population, and enfranchisement was limited to the literate. This added strength to states like Minas Gerais, which were little affected by the increase in mobilization politics which became the characteristic of Rio, São Paulo and a few other big centers, like Recife and Porto Alegre. A gap started to develop between the politics leading to the executive posts and the politics leading to the elections for the Congress. The latter process remained stable and absorbed much of the mobilization effects, while the former was much more exposed to these effects. The PSD-PTB coalition was palatable to the army and conservative sectors while the PSD had the lead, but when Goulart had to replace Quadros, the crisis broke out. The first solution, characteristically, was to force a parliamentary system which could empty the powers of the President. This was done in 1961, but Goulart was strong enough to call a national plebiscite which restored his full constitutional powers in 1963. After this the crisis was irreversible, and led to his overthrow in 1964.


If one wants to summarize the changing voting patterns from 1945 to 1964, the following traits seems to be more relevant:

a. Two lines of cleavage defined the political system in 1945. One was regionally marked, and corresponded to the cooptation vs. representation systems. The other existed within each of these systems, and went roughly from left (the PTB) to right (the UDN) in the cooptation side. In the São Paulo area the left was represented in 1945 by the Communist Party (it got almost 20% of the Congressional vote in this State, but only 8.2% of the national votes, and was declared illegal in 1947). The center right never acquired a defined party configuration in that State.

b. As time passed and the levels of education, urbanization and industrialization increased, the cooptation system started to falter. Political alienation, as indicated by the invalid votes, increased, and this was particularly acute in the São Paulo area.

c. The entrance of São Paulo as an independent political agent in national politics was first in terms of representational politics of a stabilizing or restrictive character, but acquired almost immediately a mobilizational connotation. Analysis of interest groups, the trade unions, and even the educational system in the São Paulo area indicate the basis for representational politics, but its alienation from national politics meant that it never came to the shape of articulated political parties. The PSP started from the beginning using mobilizational appeals and used as much political cooptation as it was possible at the state level.

d. The victory of Jânio Quadros (UDN São Paulo) and Goulart (PTB) for the Presidency and vice-presidency in 1960 had two essential consequences. First, it meant that politics became national, and the political isolation of São Paulo had come to an end. Second, and perhaps more important, it meant that the route toward the nationalization of politics was via the increase in political mobilization and the emergence of clearly ideological cleavage at the national level. Minas Gerais, which had the same political profile as the whole country for presidential and Congressional elections up to 1954, lost its place to Guanabara, which set the pattern for the 1960 presidential election.

If the balance of forces was adequate for a political system based on limited suffrage, cooptation of political leaders and electoral isolation of the economic centers, it could not help when mobilization increased and politics became national. Political cooptation through mobilization of the urban centers demanded a kind of mobilization system which lacked organizational support, as well as economic, military and international backing. The alternative was to restrict the levels of political participation and to force the reintroduction of cooptation of the restrictive type. The new arrangement after 1964 was to increase the power of the Executive, but at the same time to channel political participation through a two-party system in the Legislature. It is worth noting that this formula was acceptable to the PSD, which could continue the politics of patronage at the local level while counting on a strong executive to restrict attempts at political mobilization (table 14).

Regional politics apparently disappeared with the two party system. However the high levels of participation shown in the elections of Quadros in São Paulo also faded, and the same thing happened in Guanabara. With the restriction of mobilization. political alienation increased, and the Congress entered a downhill race which ended in its complete subordination to the Executive. A new kind of cooptation system was installed, based on a military and technical mandate, and the political system came to a level of almost complete closure.

If the analysis so far is correct, some conclusion seem to follow necessarily. It becomes clear that the political process in an underdeveloped country like Brazil cannot be understood in terms of more or less explicit variables such as "modern" and "traditional", or rural - urban. Brazil shares with the rest of Latin America an outstanding lack of agrarian parties, and this is a strong indication that political cleavage does not cut along the rural-urban line. The closest to a rural party in Brazil was the PSD, but its strength lied not in the countryside, but in the control and exploitation of a huge and complex governmental structure. It would be misleading to think that this structure was "traditional". Since the Imperial times in the 19th Century Brazil's central government was an agent of modernization. Even after 1930 it had a very explicit policy of economic growth and bureaucratic rationalization, which it did not relinquish afterwards. Efficiency tended to be low, certainly, but this was never the only goal of a strongly patrimonialistic and status oriented State.

Another conclusion which follows is that the Brazilian internal political process cannot be simply explained away in terms of its insertion in an international context of dependence. External factors are obviously very important in the same sense that they place limits to the alternatives which are open for the country, but they are not sufficient to explain the developments that led to the present political configuration of the country.

We can now return to the question at the beginning: what kind of political reopening is possible in Brazil ? We can certainly say that cooptation politics with limited participation seems no longer possible in a non-coercive regime. As the state rationalizes to cope with the pressures of underdevelopment in a context of demographic explosion and rising aspirations, piecemeal patronage becomes unsatisfactory and politically inefficient. What was formerly a sound political career based on administrative advocacy becomes political corruption. Brazil is how witnessing the

death of its old "political class". Much of this process is in the hands of the government and manifested through direct and indirect sanctions. In addition, the process is hampered by its lack of function in a context polarized by administrative and economic efficiency vs. political mobilization. The prospects for representation with limited participation are still dimmer. The 1932 Revolution in São Paulo was probably the peak of the attempts to establish an autonomous political force in the country vis-a-vis the cooptation system. After 1945, this kind of politics in São Paulo led more to political withdrawal than to party structure and organization, and when São Paulo emerged again on the national political scene it was in terms of charismatic mobilization and expanded participation. As the government extended its control of the economic system and increased its role as an entrepreneur as well its participation in all sectors of the country's life it is indeed difficult to figure the possibility of an open political system based on representational politics in the foreseeable future.

The three remaining possibilities are that a political opening will not occur, or that it will occur with expanded participation in either the representation or cooptation mode. There is no reason to assume that the political system cannot remain closed or highly restricted for a long period, with some oscillations. Scattered empirical evidence seems to indicate that the urban middle sectors are willing to accept and support a closed military backed regime if the economic crisis is not too overwhelming, and the demographic explosion does not lead to crisis in the countryside. The social costs of this alternative are, of course, an entirely different matter.

Expanded participation in terms of representation is difficult to conceive, since it would require the dismantling of the present governmental organization. The final possibility is mobilization with and through the governmental structure, with or without the present leadership. This alternative is being intensely discussed in terms of the Peruvian experience, and it is not outside the range of possibilities(9).

The future, of course, is unknown, and any of the possible political alternatives must be ultimately tested in terms of efficiency to cope with the tensions of underdevelopment. Representative democracy in terms of the 1945-64 system, however, seems definitely to belong to the past, and it is possible to conclude with the truism that Brazil cannot help but try to look into the future.


1. This paper is part of a broader study of the Brazilian political system which the author is undertaking. A more comprehensive theoretical framework and a historical overview going from the end of the Colonial period in 1808 to the end of the "First Republic" in 1930 can be found in Simon Schwartzman, "Representação e Cooptação Politica no Brasil', Dados 7 (IUPERJ, Rio do Janeiro, 1960). This issue of Dados includes also several articles dealing with particular periods and aspects of Brazilian politics and society, within the same general framework. The author is indebted to David Nasatir for helpful criticism on form and content.

2. For a theoretical discussion of problems related with political openness in Brazil see Simon Schwartzman, "Political Participation and Political. Openness", forthcoming in the proceedings of the First Round Table of this International Political Science Association in Rio de Janeiro, and published in Portuguese in Dados 6, 1969.

3. S. M. Lipset and S. Rokkan, "Cleavage Structures, Party Systems and Voter Alignments", in Party System and Voter Alignments, New York, Free Press, 1967. Another road is suggested by Reinhard Bendix in "Social Stratification and the Political Community", in R. Bendix and S. M. Lipset, Class, Status and Power, 2nd ed., New York, Free Press, 1966. Although more arduous, it is not impossible to derive these categories from the Marxian tradition, where the discovery of Marx's Gründrisse led to a revival of the concept of "Asiatic mode of production", and gave new legitimacy for the analysis of the state structure as a relatively autonomous variable.

4. Simon Schwartzman, "Cooptação e Representação Política no Brasil", Dados 7, 1970.

5. For a short English summary of the Paulista expansion in the late nineties see Richard M. Morse, From Community to Metropolis, a Biography of São Paulo Brasil, Gainesville, University of Florida Press, 1958, chapter 14. For a very detailed and old-fashioned account, see Alfredo Ellis Jr, A Evolução da Economia Paulista e suas Causas, Brasiliana, vol. 90, 1937. For Argentina in the same period see Oscar Cornblit, Ezequiel Gallo and Alfredo A. O'Connell, "La generación del 80 y su proyecto: antecedentes y consecuencias", in Torcuato S. Di Tella and others, Argentina Sociedad do Masas, Buenos Aires, Eudeba, 1965.

6. The classic analysis of the "coronelismo" system in Brazilian politics is Victor Nunes Leal, Coronelismo, Enxada e Voto, Rio do Janeiro, 1948. His main contention is that this system is not as much an expression of the strength of traditional leadership based on local, familistic and patrimonial ties, as it is of its weakness. The "coronel", as a local boss, has little power, in a stagnant economy, without access to the government.

7. For an analysis and up dating of the discussion on local politics in Brazil see Bolivar Lamounier, "Ideologias Conservadoras e Mudanças Estruturais", Rio de Janeiro, Dados 5, 1969.

8. Data gathered by Celina Moreira Franco, Lucia Lippi Oliveira and Maria Aparecida Hime, "Comunidade Política às Vésperas da Revolução de 30", Dados 7, 1970.

9. It is interesting to note that the "Peruvian way" attracts much more the attention of Brazilians than the political process in Argentina, which seems however much closer to the restoration of representative democracy than the rest of the military-backed governments in Latin America. It is possible to speculate that the differences between Peru and Argentina might be traced back to the historical split which freed Argentina from the Spanish colonial administration in ((I) am indebted to Roberto Cortes-Conde for calling my attention to the parallel between São Paulo Rio and Buenos Aires). <