A Tribute of Blood: Army, Race, and Nation in Brazil, 1865-1945. PETER M. BEATTIE: Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2001.

James N. Green


How did Brazil manage to build a fighting force in the nineteenth century to defend its borders and police its population? How did the Brazilian elite articulate a campaign to reform an army composed of impressed criminals, vagabonds, and the unprotected poor in the wake of the army's less than glorious record in the Paraguayan War (1864-70)? How did politicians, officers, and military boosters reshape the army and, in turn, notions of the Brazilian nation through implementing conscription in the early twentieth century? Peter M. Beattie addresses these and many other questions related to the consolidation of a modern army in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. In doing so, he challenges students of Brazilian history to rethink the relationship of the armed forces to the process of nation building.

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