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Sobre pessoas e variáveis: etnografia de uma crença política

In the Brazilian Federal District (Brasilia), the local government's distribution of lots encourages thousands of people to enlist on its housing programs. Applicants are required to provide documentary proofs; these are classified according to variables, which are then fed into an equation designed to calculate the 'quantum' of worthiness of each applicant. After being quantified, each applicant is duly hierarchized. Changes in government mean alterations to the formulas used in this calculation, while changes in people's lives mean alterations to their classification. In this article, I explore how these vicissitudes on both sides balance out on the basis of a political belief which is at once shared and unstable.

Ethnographical Theory; Rituals; Anthropology of Politics

Programa de Pós-Graduação em Antropologia Social - PPGAS-Museu Nacional, da Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro - UFRJ Quinta da Boa Vista s/n - São Cristóvão, 20940-040 Rio de Janeiro RJ Brazil, Tel.: +55 21 2568-9642, Fax: +55 21 2254-6695 - Rio de Janeiro - RJ - Brazil