The coming struggle for South American hegemony
Examining the geopolitics of southern Brazil, Ross finds sources of future conflict in the unnatural division of a geopolitical unit.
Ross is traveling through “Gaucholand”, the southern region of Brazil that northern Brazilians consider to be Argentinian, non-Brazilian, other. Gaucholand, Uruguay, and central Argentina form what Ross considers to be a pre-determined geopolitical unit—one that has been unnaturally divided, and one that Argentina would like to control. Ross sees logic in this, because several factors align this region with the south: Brazil’s northern population, with its history of slavery, has a strong African admixture, while in Gaucholand, the admixture is European instead, and a “completely different race” is developing; the language spoken here is closer to Spanish than the Portuguese spoken further north; the climate is not the hot, tropical weather typical of the north, but is milder, like the south; and the landscape is shaped by the ranching estancias typical of Argentina, not the jungle and coffee plantations of Brazil. The population of this region is economically and culturally more advanced than that of the north, and often looks longingly over the border to Argentina. If there is ever a war between Argentina and Brazil, it will be fought here in Gaucholand. In the meantime, Brazil is trying to avoid such war by settling Europeans in the north to lessen the strength of the demographic dichotomies.
Colin Ross. Deutschbrasilianer. In: Südamerika: Die aufsteigende Welt. 1. Aufl. Leipzig: F.A. Brockhaus; 1922; 258-266
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