Journalism and Political Democracy in Brazil is an investigation into the complexities of the relationship established between the media and the government.
Many South American countries in the last two decades experienced significant political and social changes, embracing representative liberal democracy and the global market after having lived through relatively long dictatorship periods. After escaping from the tentacles of the military generals (1964-1985), which kept the country tied to an old economic model of state intervention and to a weak form of political institutionalisation with fragile freedom of expression, Brazil reduced the role of the state, diving into the waters of the market. At a first glance, the contemporary scenario seems to invite only optimism: the market permitted stronger governmental accountability and a means of safeguarding citizens from corruption. Political democracy was also consolidated, with full competitive and free elections held regularly. Certain groups of civil society players were included in the mainstream arena and a relative degree of press independence and freedom was achieved due to political democratisation and market expansion. The contemporary years nonetheless have been highly contradictory, with the market and the state and the various societal spheres being overwhelmed in tensions.