Brazil 2010 Census Shows Changing Race Balance

BBC News, November 16, 2011

For the first time, non-white people make up the majority of Brazil’s population, according to preliminary results of the 2010 census.

Out of around 191m Brazilians, 91 million identified themselves as white, 82m as mixed race and 15m as black.

Whites fell from 53.7% of the population in 2000 to 47.7% last year.

The once-a-decade census showed rising social indicators across Brazil as a result of economic growth, but also highlighted enduring inequalities.

The census was conducted by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE).

“It is the first time a demographic census has found the white population to be below 50%” it said in its report.

The number of people identifying as black rose from 6.2% to 7.6%, while the number saying they were of mixed race rose from 38.5% to 43.1%.

Among minority groups, 2m Brazilians identified themselves as Asian, and 817,000 as indigenous.

Advances

Much of the census data released reflects the progress Brazil during a decade of sustained economic growth and government policies aimed at reducing poverty.

Between 2000 and 2010:

• Adult illiteracy fell from 13.6% to 9.6%. Among children aged 10-14, illiteracy fell from 7.3% to 3.9%

• The proportion of children not attending school fell from 5.1% to 3.1%

• The fertility rate fell from 2.38 children for each woman to 1.86

• Access to mains drinking water, electricity and sanitation increased nationwide

However, in almost all fields of human development the census revealed enduring inequalities between north and south Brazil, between urban and rural areas, and between rich and poor.

The IBGE highlighted “acute income disparity” in Brazil, with the richest 10% of the population gaining 44.5% of total income compared to just 1.1% for the poorest 10%.

It said more than half of the population earned less than the minimum wage and, on average, white and Asian Brazilians earned twice as much as black or mixed-race Brazilians.

Brazil is one of the most ethnically-diverse countries in the world and many Brazilians regard their nation as a “racial democracy” where there is little overt racism.

Nonetheless black Brazilians–the descendants of African slaves brought over during Portuguese colonial rule–are much more likely to be poor and rarely reach the top levels of business or politics.

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  • Tim in Indiana

    It just goes to show that whites are falling as a percentage of the population just about everywhere. And yet, whites are not supposed to notice, much less be alarmed by this. As usual, we are supposed to be up in arms about “income disparity,” but not about “population disparity.”

  • McGillicuddy

    I though that whites were the minority for most of Brazilian history, only becoming the majority in the twentieth century after aggressively promoting European immigration. Apparently, whites were the majority by the 1930s when the IBGE was started.

    But enough of Brazil’s demographic history. In the future, I hope to see the white share of her population fall dramatically as Italy, Germany, and Iberia lure back millions of their sons. I know that Europe, particularly the Mediterranean, is in the throes of a debt crisis and an economic stagnation, while Brazil is enjoying a commodities boom, but Europe is still much richer, and safer, than Brazil. It’s definitely worth a try.

  • Anonymous

    I still remember this sentence from my assigned textbook in college,something like, “While claims of racism are denied in Brazil most of the rich are white, most blacks are poor”. If they bothered to look closer, during their orgy of political correctness consigned to the written page, they would have noticed that most whites are poor also.

  • Anonymous

    I think Brazil has been majority non-white for a long time. Many of the people there who “identify” as white, would possibly not be considered white at all by most AmRen readers.

  • Anonymous

    Brazil is the racially stratified model of what all white countries will become if Third World immigration is not stopped.

    A majority dark underclass, an indifferent elite property class, and a diminishing pool of whites in the middle, tasked with serving their rulers and keeping a lid on the disaffected masses.

  • Jeddermann.

    “Brazil is one of the most ethnically-diverse countries in the world and many Brazilians regard their nation as a ‘racial democracy’ where there is little overt racism.”

    They always say that. “We are not racist and everyone gets along just fine.” I don’t believe it.

  • fred

    Nonetheless black Brazilians—the descendants of African slaves brought over during Portuguese colonial rule—are much more likely to be poor and rarely reach the top levels of business or politics.

    Oh yeah? And how are the descendants of Africans who WEREN’T brought over doing?

  • John Bell

    Surprised to see such a large proportion of Brazilians classified as white. I imagine that it’s a self classification. In reality, as everyone knows, whiteness is a comparative thing in Brazil. I read somewhere quite recently that the average “white” Brazilian derives around 20% of his or her DNA from African and Amerind forebears.

    Remember too the old Brazilian saying that “money whitens”.

  • Anon

    I’m a Brazilian, was born and live in Rio de Janeiro. What the report says is real, everybody who has some sensibility to the subject is feeling it. Suffice only to look to the new elite brought by the political forces which have ruled the country in the last ten years. We are living through the mullato’s hour… in the future, it can be Black’s hour …I have raised this issue with friends, but most of them don’t give a care: “it won’t be a problem”, “the United States is different, there you have racial hatred, confrontation”, “here we have much more harmony” etc etc … Yes, for sure, the USA is different but I suspect that sooner or later, these things will sour race relations in this country.

  • Question Diversity

    Brazil is one of the most ethnically-diverse countries in the world and many Brazilians regard their nation as a “racial democracy” where there is little overt racism.

    This is a common weasel word tactic of the egalitarian left. They’ll claim how much better and “less racist” it is “over there” (another city, another region, another country) than it is “here” (your city, region or country). St. Louis media laud Atlanta for having a vibrant downtown and no “racism” (“unlike St. Louis”), and the second to last time I was in Atlanta, their media lauded St. Louis for having a vibrant downtown and no “racism” (“unlike here in Atlanta”).

    Honestly, the grass isn’t green anywhere.

  • paul rim

    Mixed race is such a nebulous concept its hard to respond to it. Before PC it was divided up into mulattos, meszittos & quarteros. The last were 75%+ white & easily the wealthiest of the mixed ones. The real danger for Brazil is the declining white birth rate at 1.5 well below replacement level. Brazil still has a great future, but come on whites get breeding to make it happen!

  • ATBOTL

    Brazil has never been mostly white. A recent DNA study revealed that “white” identified people in the whiter southern part of the country are 99% white on paternal line, but average about equally white, black and indigenous on the maternal line.

    Most of the real white people in Brazil and other Latin American countries are descended from European immigrants who came in the last 100-150 years. There are few real white people who ancestors came over during the colonial era.

  • Timothy

    Many so-called “White” Brazilians are in fact not really white, they might pass for white but have SOME non-white ancestry. I would wager that the actual White percentage is rather less than what is listed in the article.

  • Soprano Fan

    Consider this ridiculous statement, “…continuing inequalities between rich and poor…”

    Well of course, there’s going to be inequality between rich and poor. Someone making $ 15,000 a year is not equal income-wise to a Warren Buffett. What a profound thought.

    It’s like saying there are inequalities between gold and sodium, or a carp and a shark.

    This actual conversation between F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway sums it up:

    FSF: “You know Ernest, the rich are very different from us”.

    H: “Yes, they have more money than we do”.

  • Anonymous

    “We are living through the mullato’s hour… in the future, it can be Black’s hour” Anon from Brazil

    This is the Brazilian and Caribbean tragedy, where a rigid but socially fragile continuum of color has structured society for centuries. White Creoles, more than anyone, know the horrors of miscegenation and the corruption and depravity of black rule. These are the failed societies that our insane millennia fixated elites are using as a template for their social engineering. Everyone will be happier in a slum-ridden, environmentally damaged and crime infested non-white Brazil del Norte? Why do so many white Brazilians want to emigrate to Europe or America? Yes, “Brazil is the country of the future and always will be…”

  • The Bobster

    Brazil is one of the most ethnically-diverse countries in the world and many Brazilians regard their nation as a “racial democracy” where there is little overt racism.

    ________

    I’ve met a few White Brazilians and all of them were overtly racist against their own Blacks, calling them violent and stupid. I really enjoyed their company.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t see how Brazil has such great racial harmony. Their cities, especially Rio de Janiero, has some of the highest crime in the world. The crime in Rio is close to that of Johannesburg, SA or Capetown, SA. I’ve met Brazilians of all races. I know I cannot determine race relations by speaking with such a finite group, but they did not seem to like each other. They seem to follow the custom of most third world countries…the lighter your skin is, the better. Darker skin means you are a servant or field worker. A black person explained that to me. Some other interesting comments were from an attractive mixed-race girl from Rio that I know. She cannot hail a taxi while alone because it is highly likely that the taxi driver will rape her. Here father is a tough, black policeman. You would think he would feel safe… but he is afraid to drive a car in Rio because it is so dangerous. Most Brazilains in the US are here because of the horrific crime in their homeland. For them, Miami, Fl is “safe”.

  • Anonymous

    Most of “White” Brazilians are really mongrels if we apply the American onedrop – rule.

  • Bardon

    I guess that #4 is right. Essentially, light mulattoes who were counted as “White” have, due to benefits given to the coloreds, decided it was more lucrative to present themselves as pardos/coloreds.

    For the balance of power, one just has to look on these pics or sources:

    http://goo.gl/XyxBj

    Then- it isn’t true that Whites are, for the 1st time, in a minority. Check this:

    http://goo.gl/dc34Z

    Year 1872

    Total 9,930,478

    Whites 3,787,289 (way below 50%)

    Blacks 1,954,452

    Pardos/Colored 3,801,782

    Caboclos/Indian-White 386,955

  • Anonymous

    “This is a common weasel word tactic of the egalitarian left. They’ll claim how much better and “less racist” it is “over there” (another city, another region, another country) than it is “here” (your city, region or country)”.

    Is it just the left? A good part of anthropology and sociology have been about researching peoples who are superior to Western man. One author described it as discovering a bliss in places like Nicaragua, and then, when some truth comes out, moving on to some new third world country with superior morals than the west. And don’t they have superior morals to us simply because they are not white? Is that not the basis or a good part of sensitive thought? This Muslim menace we are seeing now from the third world is entirely new and turning ‘traditional’ scholarship upside down and on it’s head.

  • Anon

    #17 Anonymous wrote:

    “I don’t see how Brazil has such great racial harmony”. Yes, but race relations in Brazil have been much less confrontational than in the US, for sure.

    “Taxi drivers [in Rio] used to rape mixed race girls.” No, it’s not so bad…either the girl you referred was lying to please you or was crazy. Crime in Rio: murder rate is nowadays around 30 per 100 K, but with huge differences among metropolitan areas.

    “Most Brazilians in the US are here because of the horrific crime in their homeland.” No, some are. Most are in the US because of money, pure and simple. And most Brazilians want to come back as soon as they earn what they have planned. They don’t adjust to the US (and vice-versa).

  • Jason C.

    Here there is an interesting piece of information about the conception of White in Brazil:

    http://goo.gl/xznYG

  • Anonymous

    Whenever I see their Carnival parades on television, I am shocked at the nudity of the women (and men). In America, you have to go to a strip club to see that kind of nude gyrating. Everyone mocks America’s puritanical origins, but look at the difference in the quality of life.

  • Anonymous

    What a shame they had slavery in Brazil. The country would have much more favourable demographics today then it actually has. This is true of all the Americas. Slavery was the dumbest, stupidest and most short-sighted policy ever adopted.

  • François

    @ Anonymous (20):

    People who would be actually superior, in their accomplishments and abilities; or a society of people with (supposedly) superior morals? What exactly have those leftist pseudo-scientists been looking for, as you say?

    See what I mean?

  • Anonymous

    “They always say that. “We are not racist and everyone gets along just fine.” I don’t believe it.”

    You should not. I lived in Ipanema a fashionable part of Rio. The only Blacks I saw were the cleaning ladies. Also White in Brazil is not White in America. In fact, South Americans are obsessed with Whiteness. Their television shows look like they come from Sweden. South of Sao Paolo is quite White. However north of Rio is just like one giant slum.Try Salvador, Recife, or Belem they are just much poorer versions of Detroit. To give you an idea of Brazilians obsession with Whites, I invited a friend down to Brazil where I was living. He was blond and blue eyed. However he was not good looking and in the States the girls would not give him a second look. However he was treated like Brad Pitt down there. I mean literally he was mobbed. There are no greater hypocrites on race in the entire world than Brazilian Whites. The story I relayed above about my friend also shows how view true Whites in the American sense there are in Rio.

  • Anon

    #26 Anonymous wrote:

    “In fact, South Americans are obsessed with Whiteness”.

    I can speak for my country – Brazil. Yes and No. Regarding our former elites: yes, they aimed at whitening the country in the past, but since the 50’s and 60 the opposite has been true: “whitening” has been presented as racist by the media and the policies that gave us a great import of European blood (and Japanese) have become untenable. Hence, nowadays the opposite is true: it is becoming increasingly fashion for a white girl to date or even marry a mullato or even a Black. Her parents may not like it but they will have to stand for it. I have a case in my family. Regarding Blacks and coloured people: Yes, throughout our history, they have always dreamed of “whitening” their offspring.

  • Mike H.

    Probably just more mixed race counting themselves as ‘mixed’ under the census.

    In Brazil, whiteness is more related to wealth than ancestry. I remember seeing a documentary a while back about how the whitest people you’ve ever seen would proudly state that they had several non-white ancestors, and who knows how these people mark themselves down in the census? The same goes for the obviously mixed people with white ancestors.

  • The Swede

    Re: #27

    The “white” Brazilians I have come across in Europe & Brazil still look mixed according to European references. Personally Brazil would last places to live on, If I wanted live in a white country.

    That country has never or will be white. This story is a bit strange.

  • WhiteSoutherner

    i am a white southern american who has lived the last 10 years in chile, argentina, and now brasil.

    they are more honest about race here. white is good because the people are smarter, work harder, etc. black is less good because the people are less smart, work less, etc.

    i agree with the brasilian a few comments up: “blackness” has become more valued(from american movies, rap music, sports figures, general popular culture, etc) in the last 10 years, and there are more attractive white girls crossing the color line.

    americans would do well to remember that the poisonous culture we have created (racism against whites, homosexual rights/marriage, etc) has been exported to the rest of the worrld through our dominance of the (global) entertainment industry, media, popular culture, music, etc.

  • Estates Brazil

    The country’s latest census Preliminary results show that 97 million Brazilians, or 50.7% of the population, now define themselves as black or mixed race, compared with 91 million or 47.7% who label themselves white. The proportion of Brazilians declaring themselves white was down from 53.7% in 2000 census. Brazil’s census board, the IBGE, said in its report that among the hypotheses to explain this trend, one could highlight the valorization of identity among Afro-descendants. ivonete Carvalho, from the government’s racial equality ministry, said African-Brazilians were increasingly willing to stand up and be counted

    The 2010 census also that in major cities white inhabitants was earning about 2.4 times more than their black counterparts.

  • ATBOTL

    “americans would do well to remember that the poisonous culture we have created (racism against whites, homosexual rights/marriage, etc) has been exported to the rest of the worrld through our dominance of the (global) entertainment industry, media, popular culture, music, etc.”

    Good point, but who dominates the American entertainment industry and media? It ain’t white people.