Print version ISSN 0103-4014
OLIVEIRA, Francisco de. A questão regional: a hegemonia inacabada. Estud. av. [online]. 1993, vol.7, n.18, pp. 43-63. ISSN 0103-4014. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0103-40141993000200003.
The Regional Question, which in Brazil traditionally refers to the Northeast, developed originally in the nineteenth century as a result of the manner in which economic expansion, namely capitalist coffee agriculture in southeastern Brazil, resolved the issue of land and labor markets. After having eliminating its competitors, either through the use of force (suppression of regional revolts) or through fiscal incentives for their own private benefit, the coffee-growing bourgeoisie of São Paulo State proved incapable of exercising hegemony effectively. During the 1940s and 50s, the last chance of mending a fractured process and resolving the Regional Question were wasted, as this was a period when São Paulo not only concentrated industrial power but also constituted the nation's principal hope. New social and political forces, which have matured in a complex fashion over the last two decades, have become the main actors most capable of recovering the country and the Nation in terms of modernity, though they inherit an incomplete hegemony that has left a long line of disasters in its wake, which are precisely what must be undone. An analysis of the Regional Question, rather than simply a northeastern plaidoyer, may provide the key to understanding such an inheritance.