Affirmative Brazil

In a stack of papers called Instruction.

  • Sep
  • 04
  • 2007

Great show on KQED tonight. “Brazil in Black and White” gives an interesting take on affirmative action. The reasons for its existence in Brazil differ from those presented in America. At one point, photographs of the students decide who will be accepted under the quota system: do you look black enough? Phrased in those terms, the issue seems a bit different than the typical. Quickly followed up with the fact that black college students in Brazil make up a single-digit percentage, yet blacks make up 50% of the overall population, and the issue looks different, still. By comparing the racial problems in Brazil to those in America, the conversation changes.

This could be a great way to discuss race without the baggage that we bring to it in this country. Sure, it’s exchanging baggage for baggage, but removing from the argument personal beliefs about the origin of our country should encourage a slightly altered view of the issue, perhaps a more objective one. Witnessing racial struggle in another country surely spins the way students talk and think about this.

Trouble Is

Doesn’t look like this one is for sale or available to watch online (yet?). A 4-minute clip (grab your 8MB QuickTime version) provides a fairly good summation for now. Did anyone happen to TiVO the full thing? If you have KQED Encore, the show replays Sunday, September 9 at 12:00pm. Can you record it?

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