The Sourmetal Smell: A Study of Structural Violence in Brazil
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In The Sourmetal Smell, I use the biography of Sandro de Nascimento, a former street child who infamously hijacked a Rio city bus in 2001 and was killed by the police officers who arrested him, to analyze structural violence at work in Brazil. I begin, at an international level, by examining the effects on poverty and, partly in consequence, crime rates, of the international economic situation and neoliberal strategies for coping with economic crisis. From there, I move on to a hybrid local-international level in which attitudes within the police and criminal/juvenile justice systems towards people in Sandro’s social group are examined. Finally at the local-bystander level I analyze portrayals of Sandro and his social group in the media.