08.11, Mon, 17:30-19:00 (CET, UTC +1) – In Portuguese (translation to English available)
On 19 November 2020, João Alberto Silveira, a poor black man was being beaten to death by security guards in an establishment of the multinational Carrefour in Porto Alegre, Brazil. Come to be known as the “Carrefour Case”, this violent act filmed on the eve of Black Consciousness Day—a public holiday in five Brazilian states—had unparalleled public repercussion in Brazil and internationally. Black movement activists, academics, journalists held private security responsible for collaborating in the black genocide, alongside the Brazilian public security apparatus.
Invited by the dean of Zumbi dos Palmares University, the only black academy in Brazil, I researched and wrote a comprehensive study of the case in the context of the Movimento Ar (“Air Movement”), which honours George Floyd and the black population and in which I had been participating. In this talk, I will raise some disturbing questions that derive from the analysis published in the book Carrefour Case, Racism and Private Security, and from more than six years of research dedicated to private security in Brazil, particularly São Paulo.
I will show how one of the greatest difficulties in understanding the broader dynamics of racism is how security becomes concentrated and hyper-localized in racist acts. From the analysis of what I call the profitable industrial complex of private security in Brazil, I will conclude on how the security industries contribute not only to alimenting a chain of violent instances of racism, but also and above all to racializing cities and segmenting populations. Through a malignant twist, security furthermore keeps operating under the veil of attributing responsibility for structural racism to security guards, mostly themselves poor and black, whom the Brazilian security industrial complex holds captive in exploitative and voracious work regimes.
Configurando o racismo no Brasil. Desvendando os feitos da indústria de segurança
Dia 19 de Novembro de 2020, João Alberto Silveira, negro pobre, foi filmado sendo espancado até à morte por seguranças em um estabelecimento da multinacional Carrefour em Porto Alegre. O “Caso Carrefour” teve uma repercussão pública sem igual, no país e internacionalmente. Era a véspera do Dia da Consciência Negra, feriado oficial em cinco estados do Brasil. A segurança privada, não mais apenas a segurança pública brasileira, foi genericamente acusada por ativistas dos movimentos negros, acadêmicos, jornalistas de colaborar no genocídio negro.
Em regime de urgência, fui convidada pelo reitor da Universidade Zumbi dos Palmares para, no âmbito do “Movimento Ar”, em honra à memória de George Floyd e das populações negras, onde eu já participava, a pesquisar e escrever uma obra compreensível sobre o caso. Nesta apresentação gostaria de trazer algumas questões inquietantes que derivam da análise publicada no livro “Caso Carrefour, Racismo e Segurança Privada” e de mais de seis anos de estudos dedicados à segurança privada no Brasil (com enfoque em São Paulo).
Uma das maiores dificuldades para entender as dinâmicas amplas do racismo na segurança é sua concentração e hiper-localização no ato racista. A partir da análise do que chamo de complexo industrial lucrativo da segurança privada no Brasil, pretendo demonstrar como a segurança contribui não só para proporcionar episódios de racismo, mas também e sobretudo para racializar as cidades e segmentar populações. Ao mesmo tempo, isso é feito frequentemente atribuindo as responsabilidades pelo racismo estrutural a profissionais da segurança na ponta, a maioria pobres pretos, que o complexo industrial da segurança brasileira mantém em regimes de trabalho saturantes e vorazes.
Susana Durão is an Adjunct Professor of Anthropology at Universidade Estadual de Campinas (Unicamp). She was a Visiting Scholar at the Instituto de Ciências Sociais of the Universidade de Lisboa and the Summer Program in Social Sciences of the Institute of Advanced Studies at Princeton University. She has coordinated the international research project “Policing and Urban Imaginaries: New Security Formats in Southern Cities” (2015-2019). Durão has secured grants from the Institute of Advanced Studies at Princeton (USA), Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia (Portugal), Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (Brazil), and the Ministry of Science, Technology, and Innovations (Brazil). She received the Dedication to Undergraduate Teaching Prize from Unicamp in 1999.
Her areas of interest are public and private security, hospitality security, urban violence, policing work and inequality, plural policing studies, and police training from an urban ethnographic perspective. She has conducted fieldwork in Portugal, Brazil, and African Lusophone contexts.
09.11, Tue, 17:00-18:30 (CET, UTC +1) – In English (translation to Portuguese and Spanish available)
In Mexico, as in all of Spanish America, independence from Spain was followed by a period of political instability. This instability was related, in particular, to the need to find new forms of and procedures for political decision-making and ways to create new political identities, given the rise of new concepts such as national sovereignty, representation, and the general will in the era of Atlantic Revolutions.
This lecture sheds light on pronunciamientos as a form of representation that became prominent in Mexico. Some pronunciamientos were outright rebellions, but they were more often a ritualised practice used by many social actors to express their will in political conflicts. Along with elections, they took on a mediating function between the government, representative bodies, and the citizenry. Pronunciamientos changed the one-directional relationship between ruler and ruled that had been common during the colonial period. Communication between the local, regional, and national levels intensified considerably, and printed public spaces merged with oral spaces. Therefore, the lecture will discuss whether early pronunciamientos were a form of democratic practices.
Silke Hensel is professor of Latin American History at the University of Cologne since April 2021. From 2004 to 2021 she was professor of “non-European” history at the University of Münster. Her main research concentrates on governance in the colonial era and after independence. She also focuses on migration, racism and violence. Her regional expertise lies in Mexico, the US, and the Cono Sur.
Her books include El desarrollo del federalismo en México: La élite política de Oaxaca entre ciudad, región y estado nacional, 1786–1835, Oaxaca/San Luis Potosí/Zamora, Michoacán: Universidad Autónoma
Benito Juárez de Oaxaca/El Colegio de San Luis/El Colegio de Michoacán 2012. She co-edited
Dinámicas de inclusión y exclusión en América Latina. Conceptos y prácticas de etnicidad, ciudadanía
y pertenencia, Frankfurt/Madrid 2015. Hensel is editor in chief of the Jahrbuch für Geschichte
Lateinamerikas/Anuario de Historia de América Latina.