Skip navigation
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Title: Everyday Violence: Representation and Resistance in Complexo do Alemão, Rio de Janeiro - Brazil
Authors: Hoffman, Ava
Advisors: Nixon, Robert
Carvalho, Bruno
Department: Independent Concentration
Certificate Program: Latin American Studies Program
Class Year: 2017
Abstract: From rampant police brutality to disproportionate exposure to environmental harms, the recent mega-events (2007 Pan-American Games, 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympics) have served as the pretext for a model of urban development, governance and policing that systematically works to displace, exclude and erase favela residents in Rio de Janeiro. This thesis explores the intersection of urban violence and environmental (in)justice, stemming from public neglect and disinvestment, in a group of favelas in Rio’s North Zone known as Complexo do Alemão (Alemão). The rights violations experienced in Alemão are conditioned by local specificities while also offering a window into what is truly a global phenomenon whereby multiple forms of violence and injustice coalesce to the detriment of marginalized populations. I suggest an expanded conception of what constitutes violence, termed everyday violence, that encompasses forms of violence both personal and structural, slow and instantaneous, with corporeal human consequences that play out over the timescale of a single day, everyday—such that these forms of violence are perceived as ordinary, normal, natural and banal. But in the face of pressures exerted, those whose lives are permeated by violence in Alemão not only contend with it, but actively contest it. Harnessing digital technologies, resident-activists have re-appropriated media (and the means of its production), flipping the spectacle of commodified violence on its head by “spectacularizing” everyday forms of violence—disseminating provocative imagery and narrative via decentralized social media platforms—such to denounce the government’s modus operandi in favelas by inserting hyper-local, “invisibilized” forms of violence into the public imaginary. I argue that more explicitly framing environmental harms as violence is necessary to destabilize the perceived normalcy of these daily harms imposed upon the lives and bodies of residents—indicting responsible agents not only for failing to fulfill environmental and human rights but for the active violation thereof, imbuing harms inflicted by chronic neglect and disinvestment with agency and urgency.
Type of Material: Princeton University Senior Theses
Language: en_US
Appears in Collections:Independent Concentration, 1972-2023

Files in This Item:
File SizeFormat 
hoffman_ava.pdf6.74 MBAdobe PDF    Request a copy

Items in Dataspace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.