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The transnacional cocaine market in Brazil: ethnography at the port and a favela in Santos

Grant number: 20/14000-6
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2021
Effective date (End): February 29, 2024
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Sociology - Urban Sociology
Principal researcher:Gabriel de Santis Feltran
Grantee:Isabela Vianna Pinho
Home Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


The expansion of illegal markets is an emerging topic in the socioanthropological literature. With the arrival of Brazilian factions on the borders, both in ports and airports, the circulation range of goods has been amplified, which consolidates global circuits between legal and illegal. The relation between these economies with the Brazilian urban conflict and violence has also been highlighted, but empirical evidence of these markets is still limited. Little is known about its modus operandi and practical means of expansion. By taking into account the enormous economic strength of these markets, their transnationalization, and their violent effects, especially in the outskirts, the present research study aims to contribute to empirical studies on illegal markets and "urban violence" in Brazil. As a general goal, it is intended to analyze how money and violence are socially distributed on the illegal and transnational cocaine market. This market will be observed through qualitative and ethnographic research, which reconstructs the double journey of cocaine that crosses the Port of Santos (wholesale) and the Pouca Farinha favela in Guarujá (retail). Quantitative market data and indicators of violence will be complementary techniques.

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