Drowning in Laws: Labor Law and Brazilian Political Culture by John D. French

By John D. French

Given that 1943, the lives of Brazilian operating humans and their employers were ruled by means of the Consolidation of work legislation (CLT). noticeable because the finish of an completely repressive strategy, the CLT was once lengthy hailed as one of many world's so much complex our bodies of social laws. In Drowning in legislation, John D. French examines the juridical origins of the CLT and the position it performed within the cultural and political formation of the Brazilian operating category. targeting the really open political period referred to as the Populist Republic of 1945 to 1964, French illustrates the evident distinction among the generosity of the CLT's criminal delivers and the meager justice meted out in places of work, govt ministries, and hard work courts. He argues that the legislation, from the outset, was once extra an awesome than a collection of enforceable rules there has been no goal at the a part of leaders and bureaucrats to really perform what used to be promised, but employees seized at the CLT's utopian premises whereas attacking its systemic flaws. finally, French says, the exertions legislation turned "real" within the office basically to the level that staff struggled to show the imaginary perfect into fact.

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Trumpeting a fabricated ‘‘Cohen plan’’ for communist revolution, Vargas surprised the nation on 11 October 1937 by canceling elections, dissolving Congress, and establishing a dictatorship called the Estado Novo (New State). B R A Z I L I A N L A B O R L E G I S L AT I O N Riding in an open car, President Getúlio Vargas greets workers at Pacaembu stadium in São Paulo, May Day, 1944. (Courtesy Iconographia/Cia. ∑ On hearing the news, recalled Vargas’s daughter, Alzira, one of the newly unemployed congressmen rushed over to see her at the presidential palace: ‘‘Little Alzira, I know that the boss [patrão] is right.

S. company managers to Labor Minister Collor’s policies offers fascinating insights into the modus operandi of employer–central government relations as it first emerged in the early 1930s. ’’ Summarizing his informants’ views, Phelps commented on government mandates regarding employment of Brazilian nationals (the ‘‘two-thirds law’’) as well as new stipulations about holidays, hours, and pension payments. ’’∏Ω Yet Phelps also reported that this incipient labor legislation was not, on the whole, particularly severe or difficult to comply with.

In 1976, Raimundo Faoro, a courageous opponent of the post-1964 military regime, suggested that the labor legislation was adopted ‘‘even before it became a pressing demand of the workers. ’’∂∑ Almost two decades later, Almir Pazzianotto Pinto, a former radical labor lawyer turned labor minister, would capture this Brazilian peculiarity by citing the words of former President Juscelino Kubitschek (1955–60). ’’∂∏ Moreover, another peculiar twist to the artificiality thesis is that it is by no means a totally original creation of recent decades.

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