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A Brazilian medical collection: Central Brazil in Arthur Neiva and Belisário Penna's scientific expedition and Julio Paternostro's voyage to Tocantins

Nísia Trindade Lima About the author

The article addresses the role played within the social imaginary of Brazil by the scientific voyages of physicians in the first half of the twentieth century. Two texts are analyzed: a report by Arthur Neiva and Belisário Penna published in Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz and another, by Julio Paternostro, released in 1945 in Viagem ao Tocantins. The former contributed to singling out pathology as the defining mark of national identity during the First Republic (1899-1930), a fact that had repercussions in the following decades, as apparent in Paternostro's book, which at the time of its publication was presented as an indictment of national problems. These portraits of Brazil highlight as attributes of the country not only disease but also the geographic and, primarily, cultural distance separating the coast from the sertão.

sertão; scientific voyages; tropical medicine; Brazilian collection; Brazil

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