Where Does Brazil Go Now?
On October 30, Brazilians reelected Former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva to an unprecedented third term, defeating the far-right extremist incumbent Jair Bolsonaro. Despite an entrenchment of deeply reactionary forces in Brazil’s recent congressional and gubernatorial races, Lula has mounted an epic political comeback, confronting a right-wing onslaught in the world’s fourth-largest democracy. The world looks much different today than it did twenty years ago when Lula was first elected. Brazil faces enormous challenges and opportunities—some old, some new—in the years ahead. With global attention on Brazil as Lula turns to the task of shaping his administration, it is not too soon to ask how he will govern, or what the Brazilian left’s task is moving forward. Sabrina Fernandes and Andre Pagliarini led a conversation about the campaign and its implications, Brazilian history, the left, and possible futures for Latin America’s largest nation.
Sabrina Fernandes is a Brazilian ecosocialist organizer with a PhD in Sociology from Carleton University, Canada. She is currently a guest researcher at the Latin American Institute of Freie Universität Berlin, Full Collaborating Researcher at the University of Brasília and a postdoctoral fellow with the International Research Group on Authoritarianism and Counter-Strategies of the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung. Sabrina is also a contributing editor at Jacobin Magazine and producer of Tese Onze, a socialist political education platform in Brazil.
Andre Pagliarini is an assistant professor of history at Hampden-Sydney College, Virginia, a fellow at the Washington Brazil Office, and a columnist at The Brazilian Report. He has written widely on Brazilian politics and history in Jacobin, The New Republic, The Guardian, among other outlets. He is currently working on a book about the politics of nationalism in modern Brazil and another on mass politics across post-independence Latin America.