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Uses of territory, finance and circuits of the urban economy: an analysis of the Jogo do Bicho and the lottery market in Portugal

Grant number: 19/17513-7
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Master's degree
Effective date (Start): October 31, 2019
Effective date (End): January 27, 2020
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Geography
Principal Investigator:Fabio Betioli Contel
Grantee:Leonardo Sena Do Carmo
Supervisor abroad: Mario Adriano Ferreira do Vale
Home Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : Universidade de Lisboa, Portugal  
Associated to the scholarship:17/22054-6 - Territory, finance and circuits of the urban economy: investigating the capillarity of the organizations of the Jogo do Bicho in Arapiraca (al), BP.MS


The lottery market has always played a significant role in the economy of practically every country in the world. With regard to Brazil, the interest for lotteries comes with the arrival of the Portuguese royal family in 1808 and continues in nowadays. A remarkable element in the history of the Brazilian lottery market is related to one of the most popular lotteries in the country: called "Jogo do Bicho". This lottery emerged in the late nineteenth century, it has gained immense popularity in the same way that football, cachaça and carnival, form an authentic part of Brazilian identity (DAMATTA; SOÁREZ, 1999). However, the "Jogo do Bicho" is an activity that has been considered illegal in the country since 1941, when was promulgated Decree-Law no. 3.688. Even with the legal prohibition, still today the "Jogo do Bicho" presents itself as the most financially successful lottery in the country, moving about R$ 12 billion/year (IJL, 2014). Thus, we seek to interpret the "Jogo do Bicho" in light of the theory of the two circuits of urban economy (SANTOS, [1975] 2008), in order to understand the logic of its current functioning, and the division of labor that it presents. In function of the "Jogo do Bicho" to be a lottery, as well are official lotteries in different countries, part of their understanding also goes through the analysis of their similarities and differences with the official lotteries. It is in this sense that we found it interesting to broaden the scope of our research in this "BEPE" project, to incorporate the analysis of the lottery market in Portugal by a geographical bias. Therefore, the interest in the internship abroad was also due to the possibility of building useful geographical debates based on the experience of the academic environment with the Institute of Geography and Spatial Planning (IGOT) of the University of Lisbon.