Living in the Crossfire

Favela Residents, Drug Dealers, and Police Violence in Rio de Janeiro

Maria Moreira Alves and Philip Evanson
Book Cover

PB: $36.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-0004-8
Publication: Mar 11

HC: $81.50
EAN: 978-1-4399-0003-1
Publication: Mar 11

Ebook: $36.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-0005-5

254 pages
6 x 9
3 figs., 7 halftones

Communities organizing to end Brazil's urban war on drugs

Read Chapter 1 (pdf).


For all of Brazil's efforts to reduce poverty-and its progress-the favelas in Rio de Janeiro still house one-third of the city's poor, and violence permeates every aspect of the city. As urban drug gangs and police wage war in the streets, favela residents who are especially vulnerable live in fear of being caught in the crossfire. Politicians, human rights activists, and security authorities have been working to minimize the social and economic problems at the root of this "war." Living in the Crossfire presents impassioned testimony from officials, residents, and others in response to the ongoing crisis. Maria Helena Moreira Alves and Philip Evanson provide vivid accounts from grieving mothers and members of the police working to stop the war and, among officials, from Brazil's President Luis Inácio Lula da Silva, who discusses his efforts to improve public security.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Introduction PART I Rio de Janeiro: The Marvelous City and Its Communities 1 The Decline of Poverty and the Rise of Violence 2 Living in the Favelas in the Twenty-first Century 3 Communities under Fire 4 Voices of Hope and Renewal 5 Voices of Community Leaders PART II Voices of Public Security Officials 6 Security for Whom? 7 Voices of Police Officers 8 Voices of Government Officials Conclusion Notes Glossary References Index

About the Author(s)

Maria Helena Moreira Alves is retired from the University of the State of Rio de Janeiro. She twice received a Tinker International Fellowship to teach at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has worked with various human rights organizations, trade unions in Latin America, and NGOs. She is the author of State and Opposition in Military Brazil.

Philip Evanson is Associate Professor Emeritus in the Department of History and the former Director of the Latin American Studies Center at Temple University. He collaborated with author Rose Marie Muraro on the book Memórias de uma mulher impossível.


In the Series

  • Voices of Latin American Life edited by Arthur Schmidt

    Voices of Latin American Life, edited by Arthur Schmidt, aims to bring the texture and humanity of Latin American experiences to English-language readers through translations of works that impart direct voices. Through testimonial literature, interviews, and essays, the series will present important Latin American views from the famous and the anonymous that reflect the immense challenges of fundamental issues and of daily life in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries.