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History of School Geography in the Vargas period (1930-1945): disputes around the senses of the nation from the physical-natural themes

Grant number: 18/08542-0
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate (Direct)
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2018
Effective date (End): April 25, 2021
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Geography - Human Geography
Principal researcher:Rafael Straforini
Grantee:Thiago Manhães Cabral
Home Institution: Instituto de Geociências (IG). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):19/04313-0 - The interactions between the academic and scholar french geographies with brazilian school geography and its didactic practices, BE.EP.DD


The objective of the research is to understand how the School Geography contemporary to the national-patriotic state of Vargas (1930-1945) triggers, through the physical-natural themes present in the didactic materials, the discursive senses of Brazilian territory and national identity. Therefore, I assume that the geographic knowledge related to the themes of natural cross - or even construct - specific senses in which groups puts in disputes, especially from the 1930s, the discursive landmarks of School Geography, new struggles for meaning of school curriculum and the construction of territorial meanings based on national-patriotic ideas. In this movement, I assume the poststructuralist assumptions of Ernesto Laclau's discourse theory as a reference of method to analyze part of the history of the school discipline Geography, considering it, in such context, as an element-moment of the political. I made use of the methodological resources of qualitative research, focusing on documentary research, with the analysis of didactic materials of geography, school textbooks and referential academic works for School Geography. In the end, I intend to elucidate the materialization of the process of construction of meanings for the territory and for nationality through the practices of significance of the School Geography, identifying their impressions in pedagogical guidelines and in the didactic materials produced in the proposed period of analysis, giving special attention to the analysis of the discourse inherent to language, cartographic treatment and imaging surfaces that shape the representations of physical-natural themes. Finally, I think that this review of the functions and discursive practices of School Geography in Brazil may be pertinent to a reflection about the role of pedagogical practices in Geography when working in Brazilian space, practices that in some aspects are preserved until today. (AU)

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