Cooper, Martin (2011) The railway in Brazilian fiction: Negotiating modernity, 1888-1980. The Journal of Transport History, 32 (1). pp. 66-82. ISSN 0022-5266
Abstract

This paper examines a selection of novels by major Brazilian authors which feature accounts of railway travel in Brazil. From the late nineteenth century, works by J?lio Ribeiro (1845-90) and Machado de Assis (1839-1908) are considered. Spanning the twentieth century, novels by Lima Barreto (1881-1922), M?rio de Andrade (1893-1945), Jorge Amado (1912-2001) and M?rcio Souza (b. 1946) are discussed. The aim is to assess the treatment of railways in works of long-form Brazilian fiction from the introduction of this transport technology in the 1850s until the late twentieth century. The novels analysed in this essay, published between 1888 and 1980, reveal a common tendency to present the railway as a tension between opposites. These are identified as the dualities of urban/rural and modernity/tradition. This tendency forms the persistent questioning of the railway ensemble during the development of the railway in Brazil, and reveals an abiding uncertainty about this transport technology during the period in question.

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