Explaining Brazil Podcast #6: Brazil’s falling soft power

In our latest episode of Explaining Brazil, The Brazilian Report chats with journalist and academic Daniel Buarque about Brazil’s softer side – politically, that is. Soft power – that is, the bargaining chips held by a country outside of military force and economic pressure – feeds into everything from international relations to tech and tourism.

Much has happened in Brazil since an image of a rocket-powered Christ the Redeemer statue, poised to shoot skywards, graced the front page of The Economist. Brazil’s international reputation has suffered over the last few years, with both national and international coverage often zeroing in on corruption, crime, and political instability.

In this episode, we look at Brazil’s changing image and what that might mean for the country’s future. Soft power has more sway on diplomacy, policy, and economics than we might assume. So how do these less-than-rosy depictions of Brazil’s current situation impact its future prospects?

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On this podcast

Gustavo Ribeiro has extensive experience covering Brazilian politics and international affairs. His work has been featured across Brazilian and French media outlets, including Veja, Época, Folha de São Paulo, Médiapart and Radio France Internationale. He is the recipient of multiple awards, including the Abril Prize for outstanding political journalism. He holds a master’s degree in Political Science and Latin American studies from Panthéon-Sorbonne University in Paris.

Ciara Long is a journalist based in Rio de Janeiro and a contributing writer for The Brazilian Report. Her work has been featured in PRI, CBC News and World Politics Review among others.

Daniel Buarque is a Brazilian journalist and author of the book Brasil, País do Presente (in English: Brazil: Country of the Present). He is currently completing a doctorate on Brazil’s international image at King’s College University in London, and previously wrote for Brazilian publications including G1, Valor Econômico, and Folha de S. Paulo.