Brazil's economy, like many in the region, was marked in the 1970s and 1980s by runaway inflation and suffered greatly from the collapse in world oil prices. These factors combined to leave Brazil with a foreign debt of almost $100 billion in the mid-1990s that grew to more than $200 billion by 2003. As is the case with several Latin America nations, in the past Brazil depended on loans from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to help pay off debt and stabilize its economy.

"Brazil: Country Overview." World Geography: Understanding a Changing World.

ABC-CLIO, 2014. Web. 27 Oct. 2014.


Brazil's recent political history has been less turbulent than that of some of its neighbors. However, the price for stability has been a deeply rooted, insidious system of political patronage, favoritism, and corruption. Successive presidents and congresses have pledged to clean up the political process, and some progress has been made


Soccer is without a doubt a top national pastime. Rio de Janeiro also boasts the world's largest soccer stadium, called the Maracana. Brazilian soccer started in the 1890s. While the English invented the game, many soccer aficionados argue that Brazil perfected it. Brazil has for sure perfected its own style of soccer

Edwards, Todd L. "Brazil: Traditions & Etiquette." World Geography: Understanding a Changing World. ABC-CLIO, 2014. Web. 3 Nov. 2014.

Although the Portuguese  navigator Pedro Alvares Cabral is credited with being the first European to reach Brazil, it was most likely Spanish mariner Vicente Yanez Pinzon who, in early 1500, first touched Brazilian soil. It was Cabral, sent by King Manuel I of Portugal  to establish trade routes to India and blown off course to the shores of Brazil, who named the area "Terra da Vera Cruz".

Global Village Travel Guide and DVD, "Brazil". Stock footage available from

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