Contentious Politics in Brazil and China

Beyond Regime

December Green and Laura Luehrmann

First Edition • March 15, 2016 • 384 pages

Print ISBN: 9780813350042 • $35.00 USD$45.50 CAN

Ebook ISBN: 9780813350080 • $22.99 USD$29.99 CAN

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Contentious Politics in Brazil and China: Beyond Regime is a highly accessible and compelling examination of two fast-emerging countries in the global arena. It is not common to see Brazil and China examined side-by-side, but authors December Green and Laura Luehrmann show the utility of this unorthodox comparison: By moving beyond region and regime, this book offers a thought-provoking analysis of two very different countries dealing with many concerns and problems in surprisingly similar ways.

With a focus on current issues, Contentious Politics in Brazil and China covers migration, urbanization, criminality, the environment, sexual politics and HIV-AIDS response, foreign policy, and international relations. This text not only illuminates each country’s realities more clearly than traditional regional or regime-type comparisons can, but it offers unexpected insights into the study of state-society relations.

December Green is chair of the Department of Political Science and professor of political science at Wright State University.

Laura Luehrmann is Director of the M.A. Program in International and Comparative Politics and associate professor of political science at Wright State University.

Chapter One: Brazil and China – Contention in Comparative Perspective

State and Society: Receptivity and Resistance in Brazil and China
Why these Cases?
Outline of the Book

Chapter Two: Heritage and Culture


Approach to the Past: “The Brazilian Way”
The PT: From Society to State

Approach to the Past: “Middle Kingdom” Complex
The CCP: State Management of Society


Chapter Three: Human Security


Migration: “The Rights to the City” (or Not)
Criminality and the Rule of the Law: High Crime and Official Impunity
Health Care and HIV-AIDs: Citizens Lead the State

Migration: Registered Rights (or Not)
Criminality and the Rule By Law: Low Crime and Official Impunity
Health Care and HIV-AIDS: State Tolerates Society


Chapter Four: Politics of Social Diversity


Layers of Identity: Color in Brazil
Sexual Politics and LGBT Rights

Layers of Identity: Religion and Ethnicity
Sexual Politics and LGBT Rights

Chapter Five: Environmental Politics


Pollution: Oil, Water and the Valley of Death
Deforestation: Trees v People/Trees Plus People

Pollution: ‘Smogapolypse’ Plus Water Shortages
Deforestation: Cracks in “The Green Great Wall”

Chapter Six: Leadership from Brasilia and Beijing


The Regional Arena: Is Brazil Too Big for the Room?
The Transnational Arena: Diplomacy as “The Beautiful Game”
Case in Point: Climate Change
Types of Power: Soft over Hard

The Regional Arena: Crowded by History and Resources
The Transnational Arena: Reluctant Re-Emergence
Case in Point: Climate Change
Types of Power: Soft with Hard


Chapter Seven: Conclusions: Beyond Regime

Responsibility and Reluctance
Dissolving Dichotomies

This book is a thought-provoking comparison of China and Brazil, which succeeds in challenging “traditional wisdom” about the connection between regime type and responsiveness to citizen demands. It covers critically important issues of social identity, economic development, accountability, and environmental politics and policy.
—Jacqueline Vieceli, Minnesota State University, Mankato

“I’d recommend it as a very good undergraduate textbook on contentious politics with an unusual and compelling combination of case studies, and a clear and engaging style.”
—Carol Strong, University of Arkansas at Monticello

“This book represents what comparative politics is all about. Constructing valid generalizations about political systems and state-society relations is difficult without an in-depth, cross-national comparison of institutions, historical processes, cultures and policies. The authors of Beyond Region accomplish this task by comparing the proverbial apple with an orange.”
—Sandra Suarez, Temple University

“This book offers an uncommon, rich comparison of two burgeoning giants on the international stage—Brazil and China. The focus on state-society relations across important issue areas such as migration, sexual politics, and the environment adds contemporary, in-depth insights that will excite students of comparative politics. The ease with which the writers express complex ideas makes this book suitable for students, scholars, and anyone with an interest in these leaders of the developing world.”
—Joshua C. Gellers, University of North Florida

“A highly engaging review of the major issues confronting two important societies in the world. I think it provides fascinating insights into the status of societal interactions with two distinct political systems and lets the reader see that despite these regime type variations, citizen reactions to policy issues are frequently amazingly similar (and this despite the personal risk)!”
—Jennifer Horan, University of North Carolina at Wilmington

“Green and Luehrmann’s work offers a unique comparative perspective for political scientists. The bold scope—to compare the policies of Brazil and China—offers powerful insight into both cases. Faculty interested in a cross regional analysis for their classes will find a place for Beyond Region.”
—Harold Orndorff, Daytona State College

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