Originally published in 1999 in Portuguese, Durval Muniz de Albuquerque Jr.'s excellent book will now find a much expanded, English-speaking audience and should inform another wave of scholarship. Examining the emergence and crystallization of a shared sensibility of the Brazilian Northeast's identity, the book has influenced a range of studies over the past decade and a half by scholars such as Stanley Blake, Eve Buckley, Courtney Campbell, and myself. Albuquerque also has had a broad influence in Brazil, where he has served as the president of the national association of historians and, a decade after this book, published a collection of essays that follows up on his first book's primary themes of regional identity. The energetic, timely, short pieces in Nos destinos de fronteira: História, espaços, e identidade regional (2008) productively complement the monograph.

In The Invention of the Brazilian Northeast,...

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