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Horizontes Antropológicos

versão impressa ISSN 0104-7183versão On-line ISSN 1806-9983


KOPPER, Moisés  e  DAMO, Arlei Sander. The emergence and evanescence of Brazil’s new middle class. Horiz. antropol. [online]. 2018, vol.24, n.50, pp.335-376. ISSN 1806-9983.

Between 2001 and 2013, Brazil’s economy grew with income redistribution. A result of inflationary stability, minimum wage increase, credit expansion and the widening of social policies, this period was characterized by the upward mobility of dozens of millions of Brazilians. Economists, journalists, politicians and marketers heralded the end of endemic poverty and the incorporation of this population into a newly defined “middle class”. Drawing from a documental ethnography, and from interviews with experts, this article pursuits the archeology of this category, problematizing the taxonomic ways of its emergence and evanescence. We argue that the “new middle class” must be understood as a scientific, political, and economic assemblage – one that is performed through statistic, governmental, and marketing alignments. Such diffuse scales of knowledge and power crystallized discursive fronts that rendered economic mobility legible in a country traditionally known for its stagnation and inequality.

Palavras-chave : mobility; new middle class; assemblage; alignment.

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