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Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte (2008)

Contra as Secas : a engenharia e as origens de um planejamento regional no nordeste brasileiro

Farias, Hélio Takashi Maciel de

Titre : Contra as Secas : a engenharia e as origens de um planejamento regional no nordeste brasileiro

Auteur : Farias, Hélio Takashi Maciel de

Université de soutenance : Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte

Grade : Doctoral Thesis 2008

Droughts surfaced in 1877 as a crucial problem for the birthing Brazilian nation. Engineers, who formed the country’s technical and scientific elite, took it upon themselves to study, understand and fight the problem through planned actions of intervention on space. This work, based on proposals and discussions contained in engineering magazines and reports, aims to provide elements for the comprehension of how these systematized actions against droughts, in the Iate nineteenth and early twentieth century, contributed to spatial analysis and the formation of a (then-inexistent) regional and territorial planning discipline in Brazi !. Engineers, by taking up the position of masterminds in the country’s modernization, guaranteed for themselves personal economic stability, social prestige and political power. By understanding nature, either as a resource to be exploited or an adversary to national progress, they contributed to the delimitation of the region now known as the Northeast. By seeking to understand the drought phenomenon, they created knowledge about the space they sought to intervene on ; by constructing their projects amid political and economical difficulty, they changed the organizational structures of cities and country in the northeast. The proposals for açudes (Iarge water reservoirs) allowed the fixation of population and the resistance against droughts ; the roads - railroads and automotive roadways - connected the sertão to the capitais and the coast, speeding up help to the affected populations during droughts and allowing the circulation of goods so as to strengthen the local economies in normal rimes. The adopted practices and techniques, adapted from foreign experience and developed through trial and improvement, were consolidated as an eminently spatial intervention course, even if a theoretical body of regional or territorial planning wasn’t formed in Brazil. Regional Planning proper was first applied in the country in the Northeast itself, in the 1950s, based off an economical view of reality in order to achieve development. The engineer’s work prior tothat date, however, cannot be dlsconsldered. It was proved that, despite facing financial and political hurdles, engineers had a profound commitment to the problem and intended to act systematically to transform the economical and social relations in the region, in order to be victorious in their struggle against droughts

Mots clés : Planejamento regional e territorial Combate às secas Engenharia Territorial and regional planning Combat against droughts


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Page publiée le 26 janvier 2015, mise à jour le 5 juillet 2017