Avant la lettre associational activity: antislavery associations in Brazil of the 19th century

The article challenges the thesis of the weakness of Brazilian associational life in the 1800's, through the analysis of the associations formed in the country to protest against slavery during the second half of the 19th century. Conversely to the thesis of lack of solidarity, the survey on the number of antislavery associations created and on the social heterogeneity of their members shows the exuberance of associational civic activity in Imperial Brazil. In addition, the paper argues that shifts toward expansion or decline of antislavery associational activity can be explained by changes in "political opportunities" (Tarrow, 1998).

Brazilian associational activity in the 19th century; Antislavery Movement; Political opportunities

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