Revista Brasileira de Estudos de População
versão impressa ISSN 0102-3098
SANTOS, Luiz Antonio de Castro; FARIA, Lina e MENEZES, Ricardo Fernandes de. Counterpoints in the history of Hansen's disease in Brazil: situations of stigma and seclusion. Rev. bras. estud. popul. [online]. 2008, vol.25, n.1, pp. 167-190. ISSN 0102-3098. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-30982008000100010.
As the fight against leprosy in Brazil, particularly in the state of Maranhão, is singled out for analysis, this paper discusses the different medical and 'profane' conceptions of the disease, in addition to the proposals of public health intervention, always challenged by rival doctrines or convictions about contagion, diffusion, and treatment. The changing epidemiological, medical (i.e., the practices of isolation), social, and cultural views (particularly the stigma associated with the notions of sin, purity and danger) will help the search for singularities in Maranhão, the state's main 'sanitarians', political actors, and institutions, as well as for common historical elements, among Brazilian and other populations experiencing the disease.
Palavras-chave : Leprosy; Brazilian states of São Paulo and Maranhão; Brazil; First Republican period (1889-1930); Brazil; Vargas Dictatorship (1930-1945); Stigma; Institutionalization.