Since the 1970s there has been a dramatic rise in the Indian population in Brazil as increasing numbers of pardos
(individuals of mixed African, European, and indigenous descent) have chosen to identify themselves as Indians. In Racial Revolutions—
the first book-length study of racial formation in Brazil that centers on Indianness—Jonathan W. Warren draws on extensive fieldwork and numerous interviews to illuminate the discursive and material forces responsible for this resurgence in the population.
The growing number of pardos who claim Indian identity represents a radical shift in the direction of Brazilian racial formation. For centuries, the predominant trend had been for Indians to shed tribal identities in favor of non-Indian ones. Warren argues that many factors—including the reduction of state-sponsored anti-Indian violence, intervention from the Catholic church, and shifts in anthropological thinking about ethnicity—have prompted a reversal of racial aspirations and reimaginings of Indianness. Challenging the current emphasis on blackness in Brazilian antiracist scholarship and activism, Warren demonstrates that Indians in Brazil recognize and oppose racism far more than any other ethnic group. Racial Revolutions
fills a number of voids in Latin American scholarship on the politics of race, cultural geography, ethnography, social movements, nation building, and state violence.
Designated a John Hope Franklin Center book by the John Hope Franklin Seminar Group on Race, Religion, and Globalization.