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Volume 59 / Social Sciences


KEITH D. MULLER, Associate Professor of Geography, Kent State University

AS IN RECENT DECADES, most North American geographical literature on Brazil is on Amazonian issues such as deforestation and development. By comparison, geographic publications by Brazilians are understandingly multifocused by region and topic, and are increasing in numbers.

Special mention is warranted to Projeto Rurbano from UNICAMP, the São Paulo state university in Campinas. Numerous research projects have been conducted analyzing rural changes throughout Brazil and are accessible on its website http://www.eco.unicamp.br/projetos/ in Portuguese and English. J. Graziano da Silva, the Projeto's director, and C. Campanhola are editors of a two-volume book, and Graziano da Silva has co-authored an article about recent changes in rural settlements and rural nonfarm employment (items #bi2003000158# and #bi2003000159# respectively).

Ciência e Cultura: Journal of the Brazilian Association for the Advancement of Science provides in English the results of multidisciplinary, and often joint Brazilian/North American, investigations with original data and well-documented sources, as in L. Martin, A. Bittencourt, and J. Dominguez (item #bi 00002808#).

Noteworthy publications by W. Woods and others reveal research findings of Amazonian "dark soils" (items #bi2003000155#, #bi2003000156#, and #bi2003000157#). Their soil geography investigations address the question of a precontact sustainable agriculture that may have supported a greater preconquest population than previously believed. These articles point to the need for further investigations into the development potential of intensive and sustainable anthrosols in the tropical rainforest, rather than the continued promotion of traditional and extensive shifting cultivation, which results in limited sustainability as soils leach. Those scholars with an interest in statistical models in population studies should refer to Revista Brasileira de Estudos de População (items #bi 00003058# and #bi 00003059#).

Contributions of the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) deserve mention despite an unfortunate lack of funding that resulted in late printings. For example, the1995 Revista Brasileira de Geografia, Vol. 57, No. 4 was released only in 2001. E. Penha discusses the institute's problems in an article (item #bi 98016161#).


Several PhD dissertations from North American universities stand out as noteworthy geographic studies, all on Amazonian topics.

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