The Rockefeller Foundation and the construction of a professional identity in nursing during Brazil’s First Republic

This article deals with the institution of professional nursing in Brazil during the First Republic, based on a study of documents left by the US nursing mission recruited during the 1920s by the Rockefeller Foundation, in association with the National Public Health Department. Certain excerpts from these documents are representative of main events and references within the field and can be considered emblematic of the construction of a professional identity. It is concluded that Brazilian nurses defined their identity around three basic lines: gender, race, and social origin.

Rockefeller Foundation; Brazilian nursing; First Republic; professional habitus; professional identity

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