Topic and Guests: Afro-Brazilians and the Recent Elections in Brazil with Dr. Clarence Lusane and in Salvador, Brazil Mr. Paulo Rogério Nunes. As Brazil commemorates Black Consciousness Month on heels of the general elections in October; today Africa Now! focuses on those elections and what they meant for Afro-Brazilians. On October 5, 2014 Brazilians voted in general elections to elect a President, the National Congress, State Governors and State Legislatures. The Presidential Election went for two rounds—the first round on October 5 featured three candidates: the incumbent President Dilma Rousseff of the Workers Party (PT); Ms. Marina Silva, of the Socialist Party and Senator Aécio Neves of the Social Democracy Party. The run-off election on October 26 consisted of the incumbent Ms. Dilma Rousseff and Mr. Aécio Neves in which the incumbent was narrowly re-elected. It was an eventful General Election process: it featured for the first time an Afro-Brazilian presidential candidate with a real chance to win—Marina Silva of the Socialist Party; and two major candidates being women—the incumbent Dilma Rousseff and Marina Silva.
Dr. Clarence Lusane—author, activist and journalist—is a Professor of Political Science and International Relations, and the former Program Director for Comparative and Regional Studies in the School of International Service at American University. For more than 30 years, he has written about and been active in national and international anti-racism politics. At American University he teaches and researches on international human rights, comparative race relations, social movements and electoral politics. Dr. Lusane has conducted research on the intersection of jazz and international relations, and the struggle for educational justice by Afro-Brazilians. He is also a former Co-Chair of U.S. Civil Society Committee of the Brazil-U.S. Joint Action Plan for the Elimination of Racism, a government-to-government project to address the issue of racism in Brazil.
Mr. Paulo Rogério Nunes is co-founder and executive director of the Instituto Midia Etnica (midiaetnica.org) and the news portal Correio Nagô that focuses on issues of diversity, human rights and is the leading online community targeting Afro-Brazilians. He is an Ashoka Fellow, and a blogger and writer for the Americas Quarterly Magazine. He has studied in the United States as a Fulbright Humphrey Fellow at the University of Maryland focusing in journalism and new media.
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