Fernand Braudel Institute of World Economics

Garimpo de Serra Pelada (PA) - 1982

Foto: Norman Gall

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Braudel Papers

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Reading Circles

For two decades the Reading Circles have brought  the classical and contemporary literature to public schools.

Young people and the Reading Circles


The Fernand Braudel Institute of World Economics has been developing its Reading Circles program, in partnership with Brazil’s public schools, to give the printed word new meaning for young people in the enrichment of learning.  

In this pioneering program, talented adolescents are protagonists in leading small groups of fellow students in reading and discussing the classics of world literature: Homer, Shakespeare, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky and Brazilian authors like Machado de Assis and Clarice Lispector.

These Circles, directed by the psychologist Catalina Pagés, cultivate an atmosphere of confidence and mutual respect among students. Some speak more, others less, but all join in the dialogue. In these exchanges, the capacity for listening is as important as speaking. Each participant is special in his own contribution. They write letters to the Circle about their own discoveries. The texts they produce show what they have understood and achieved.

Cooperation is a skill and method of living that must be learned. It demands attention and capacity for dialogue. Two centuries ago Adam Smith, in The Wealth of Nations, argued that nations grow when men learn to work together, opening a path to justice and prosperity. We seek these advances in the Reading Circles.


Brazil has changed


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Brazil has changed

Arm Twisting between States and Municipalities

Mariel Deak

Braudel Papers, nº51, ano 2019

Mariel Deak

Braudel Papers, nº51, ano 2019

Norman Gall

Braudel Papers, nº52, ano 2019

Transformations in classes

C,D e E

Transformations in classes

C,D e E


Brazilian Federalism: the distribution of confusion

The internet: What

are the rules?

From poverty to progress: the lower classes

From poverty to progress: the lower classes

Infrastructure and public investment: Where are we headed?

The revival of Medellin: urban innovation.

Is Bolsonaro finished?  What next?

Bankruptcies and consequences

Venezuela: the withering petrostate


True or false in social media

Life’s lottery: merit

or good luck?

Brazilian infrastructure: stopping the rot

Political renewal in

Brazil’s future

Tax reform, stability and justice

The causes and consequences of Jair Bolsonaro

Electric power and

political power

The black hole in middle

school education

The Boeing-Embraer merger: Is there a future?

Institutional problems: Brazil needs answers

Over the past three decades, the Fernand Braudel Institute has  conducted some 200 seminars and international conferences on critical issues of our time that influence Brazil's future. These explorations engage people of different ages and walks of life in debates on issues such as education, violence, federalism, chronic inflation, infrastructure, demographics, economic policy and international trade.

Visions of the world

Fernand Braudel, Historian

Volume 1 da trilogia

"Civilização e Capitalismo"

Fernand Braudel  was one of the world’s most influential historians of the 20th Century. He is best known for his magnificent 1,100-page book published in 1949 entitled The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of  Philip II, a kaleidoscopic two-volume work explaining the birth of modernity.   He began writing The Mediterranean in Brazil in the 1930s while serving in a French cultural mission that helped found the University of São Paulo. He completed this great work in a German prison camp during World War II, writing from memory. 


In 1979 Braudel published the first of three volumes of Civilization and\d Capitalism: 15th-18th Century. When he died in 1985,  What was unusual about Braudel’s career as a historian was the way the detailed attention he lavished on long-term and structural trends as they appeared in daily life. In The Identity of France, Braudel depicted the transformation that France itself went through during his lifetime. It changed from an imperial nation with a majority of citizens still living as tradition-bound peasants to a people whose outlook was thoroughly urbanized, wherever they resided. 

The Fernand Braudel Institute encourages new thinking on the future of our institutions.

We need your help. Your donation supports research, public debate, and social action dealing with the institutional development of Brazil and its role in the world economy.