Lines of Research


This research seminar (or “line”) comprises a group of specialists in the field of politics and power relations, and their (dis)connections with various social markers, linked to different theoretical, methodological, and epistemological perspectives. The various research projects combine the analysis of historical and historiographical phenomena in different territories and time-periods, while valuing the articulation of local and regional historical processes with national and global ones. The contours and configurations of these aspects are permanently debated and applied to specific objects, teaching activities, and research workshops. As an aggregating concept, power is discussed not only as an instrument of action, repression, and coercion, but also as a device or strategy for the re-creation of social differences, hierarchies and inequalities through experiences and discourses.
The research line's historians are dedicated to problematizing power relations and the ways in which they are created, maintained, legitimized and institutionalized, as well as viewing them as altered social configurations, re-invented and resisting, thus constituting fluid networks in historical processes. The temporalities and territorial settings are diverse, ranging from political history in the Medieval and Early Modern eras, to Colonial Brazil, the Imperial and Republican Brazil, contemporary dictatorships and the current history. The themes are varied and related to intellectual and conceptual history, political history combined with sociocultural history, political-administrative history, social history of women, gender studies, history of sexualities, oral history and memory, the history of religions and the history of indigenism, among other themes, domains and dimensions. Defining where, how and why power, politics and power relations are present in social dynamics is one of the objectives of the research produced by this group of professors.
Ana Paula Medicci | Antonio Mauricio Brito | Carlos Zacarias de Sena Junior | Edilece Souza Couto | Lina Maria Brandão de Aras | Lucileide Costa Cardoso | Marcelo Pereira Lima | Maria Hilda Baqueiro Paraíso | Patrícia Valim | Rodrigo Perez Oliveira


The "Slavery and the Invention of Freedom" research seminar brings together professors and students who investigate African and Afro-descendant populations in Africa, Brazil and other American societies, under slavery and in the post-emancipation period. Researchers also focus on the history of indigenous populations. Timeframes are therefore broad, fitting into the longue durée. In other words, the group does not establish rigid time frames as a guide for the research conducted by students and professors. The same applies to the spatial dimension of the research, which covers the African continent and its diasporas in Brazil, the Americas and other continents that received enslaved Africans, as well as free migrants during the slave period and post-emancipation. 
There are no restrictions in terms of themes developed by students and professors, and any topic that concerns the human groups defined above is accepted, as long as the approach is within the boundaries of History as a discipline, and consequently its notions of time and space. From a methodological point of view, this does not mean any kind of disciplinary isolation. On the contrary, there are continuous interdisciplinary dialogues with Anthropology, Sociology, Economics, Geography, Linguistics, Literary Criticism, Decolonial Studies, among others that prove to be helpful for theoretical and methodological definitions of specific subjects. From a conceptual point of view, however, investigations borrow articulating concepts from diverse theories that deal with mechanisms of social and racial domination, and collective control, on one hand, and resistance and even rebellion against them, on the other. This research group takes into account not only power at the level of racial, gender, and class relations – therefore theories about intersectionality are a must – , but also the constitution of blacks and indigenous peoples as historical subjects through the construction of identities, sociabilities and institutional networks, political projects, cultural dynamics, worldview, life trajectories, survival strategies, negotiation, and resistance.
Antônio Luigi Negro | Gabriela dos Reis Sampaio | Iacy Maia Mata | João José Reis | Luis Nicolau Parés | Maria de Fátima Novaes Pires | Maria Hilda Baqueiro Paraíso | Robert Wayne Andrew Slenes | Valdemir Donizete Zamparoni | Wlamyra Ribeiro de Albuquerque


The "Culture and Society" research seminar is characterized by the diversity of investigative proposals and the mixing of theoretical and methodological approaches derived from Cultural History and Social History. As a topic of historiographical knowledge, culture is  understood as the shared - or disputed - fabric of ideas, memories, representations, codes, fictions and sentiments whose analysis sheds light on historical subjects and their interrelationships and social practices. Culture, in its most diverse expressions, is produced from the multiple perceptions and experiences of social reality by individuals and groups, organized or not. It is therefore crisscrossed by power relations, whether at the micro or macro level. This dynamic reveals the cracks and imbalances that motivate confrontations and clashes inherent to forms of social organization and their representations.
This kind of perspective asks for interdisciplinary approaches, promoting a dialogue involving History, Anthropology, Sociology, and the Digital Humanities, and therefore providing the necessary tools for the study of the most varied themes, such as festivities, labor, religion, and faith, written and literary culture, art, material culture, power, gender, race and class relations. Based on these possibilities, the "Culture and Society" group brings together projects in three axes, covering Modern and Contemporary History in various aspects. These are Modernities; Social History of Labor and Culture; and Contemporary and Present Time History. Integrating the local and the global, the areas explored by researchers include religious history and modern empires, intellectual history, the history of women and gender relations, the history of labor, festivities, the political Right and Left, social movements, and human rights, among others. Due to the fact that Brazilian history cannot be sufficiently understood only within the country’s territory (which is an historical construct, by the way), the research carried out within the scope of this group is not exclusively linked to Brazil. As far as possible, we promote science without borders, always thinking about how spaces are mutually constructed and entangled.
Ana Carolina Barbosa Pereira | Ana Paula Medicci | Antônio Luigi Negro | Bruno Guilherme Feitler | Edilece Souza Couto | Evergton Sales Souza | Felipe Azevedo e Souza | Gabriela Reis Sampaio | Iraneidson Santos Costa | Juliana Torres Rodrigues Pereira | Laura de Oliveira | Lígia Bellini | Magali Gouvêa Engel | Marina Regis Cavicchioli | Milton Araújo Moura | Moreno Laborda Pacheco | Vinícius Donizete de Rezende