Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Embargo Period

4-27-2015

Degree Program

History

Degree Type

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Year Degree Awarded

2015

Month Degree Awarded

May

Advisor Name

Joel

Advisor Last Name

Wolfe

Co-advisor Name

Barbara

Co-advisor Last Name

Krauthamer

Third Advisor Name

Julio

Third Advisor Last Name

Capó

Abstract

This thesis argues that the Maoist guerrilla movement headed by members of the Communist Party of Brazil (PCdoB) chose Araguaia as the stage for its insurrection based on perceived ideological and physical advantages. It examines the founding of the PCdoB as it split from the Brazilian Communist Party (PCB) over the issue of armed resistance in 1962. While the PCB did not promote the use of violence against the military dictatorship, the PCdoB sought an environment in which they could foster revolutionary fervor. Though the war’s longevity demonstrates that the PCdoB accurately assessed some camponeses’ willingness to help the guerrilheiros, their inability to foster loyalty within their ranks hindered the party’s mission. The movement’s leaders policed the bodies of pregnant guerrilla members and this lack of reproductive freedom led two members to abandon the revolutionary cause. Pedro Albuquerque Neto and his wife Tereza Cristina successfully abandoned detachment C in favor of keeping their child. Pedro was imprisoned in Fortaleza leading to the discovery of the guerrilla camps in Araguaia and the end to a revolution that never truly got off the ground. Thus, this thesis proposes that while the PCdoB’s choice in Araguaia was thought to garner the best possible opportunity for a rural revolution, their mission to radicalize the camponeses was cut short by the Brazilian Armed Forces in April of 1972.

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