Trial courts

July 1, 2009

Each state territory is divided into judicial districts named comarcas, which are composed of one or more municipalities. The 26 Courts of Justice have their headquarters in the capital of each State and have jurisdiction only over their State territories. The Federal District only presents the federal-level judicial branch. Each comarca has at least one trial court, a court of first instance. Each court of first instance has a law judge and a substitute judge. The judge decides alone in all civil cases and in most criminal cases. Only intentional crimes against life are judged by jury. The judges of the courts are nominated after a selection process. There are specialized courts of first instance for family litigation or bankruptcy in some comarcas. Judgments from these district courts can be the subject of judicial review following appeals to the courts of second instance.

Colonial Brazil

April 20, 2009

brazil-2009-02-15-14-38-03In the History of Brazil, Colonial Brazil comprises the period from 1500, with the arrival of the Portuguese, until 1815, when Brazil was elevated to United Kingdom with Portugal.

During the over 300 years of Brazilian colonial history, the economic exploitation of the territory was based first on brazilwood extraction (16th century), sugar production (16th-18th centuries), and finally on gold mining (18th century). Slaves, specially those brought from Africa, provided most of the working force.

In contrast to the neighbouring Spanish possessions, the Portuguese colony in Latin America kept its territorial and linguistic integrity after the independence, giving rise to the largest country in the region.

Rio Grande do Norte

January 16, 2009

Rio Grande do Norte – one of the 26 states of Brazil (and the Federal District), located in north-eastern part of the country, at the furthest extreme tip of South America. To the west, bordered by the state of Ceará, in the north and east to the Atlantic Ocean, and in the south state of Paraíba.

The Central-West Region

December 10, 2008

The Central-West Region is composed of the states of Goiás, Mato Grosso and Mato Grosso do Sul; along with Distrito Federal (Federal District), where Brazil’s national capital, Brasília, is situated. This Region is right in the heart of Brazil, representing 18.86% of the national territory.

With the move of the country’s federal capital from Rio de Janeiro to Brasília in the 60s, the construction of roads and railways to the interior of the country made the accesses easier, speeding up the population settling and contributing significantly to its development.

Mato Grosso do Sul was created in 1979, materializing the decision of the government to divide the then called state of Mato Grosso in two states to facilitate to the administration and the development of the region.

Today, Center-West is attracting many investments for agriculture, pecuary, industries and people from Southeast and Southern Brazil.

Climate

October 13, 2008
When the monsters of the country must extend the climate depending on the distance from the equator, such as after the survey on the sea is a very different nature. While already west of Rio de Janeiro from the Serra do Espinhaco and often even further to the south at the Serra Geral in Rio Grande do Sul, the temperature drops below 0 °, the climate of the last areas außertropischen ever is a temperate, reigns in the catchment area of the Amazon a uniform hot temperature of 28-29 degrees Celsius in central and without significant cooling during the nights. In Rio de Janeiro itself, the temperature in the hottest months (January and February) 26.5 ° C, in the cooler months (July) 21.9 ° C, but brings daily from 10 to around 6 clock wehende pleasant cooling sea breeze. In the Amazon basin, there is an almost continuous rains, the main rainy months are from November to March. In southern Brazil are more in the summer thunderstorm rain, in winter more land predominantly rain. A real rainy season is not there.

States

August 24, 2008

The Equatorial line cuts through the state of Amapá in the north, and the Tropic of Capricorn line cuts through the state of São Paulo. The southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul is further to the south than the entire European continent is to the north. Acre is in the far west side of the country, covered by the Amazon forest; Paraíba is the easternmost state of Brazil; Cabo Branco, in the city of João Pessoa, is the easternmost point of Brazil and the Americas. The states of Paraná, Rio Grande do Sul, and Santa Catarina all have a temperate climate.

São Paulo is the economic center of Brazil. Agriculture, industry, commerce, and services are the most diversified of Brazil. Although a large proportion is exported to other states and other countries, the consumer market of the state is also the biggest in the country. Different from other states, where settlement started in the coast and moved inwards, in São Paulo the center of the economy was in a non-coastal city.

Rio de Janeiro, the most well known Brazilian city and with many famous landmarks, is the capital of the state of Rio de Janeiro. Older books may still reference the state of Guanabara: after the Federal District (capital of the Republic) was moved to Brasília in 1960, the city of Rio de Janeiro was elevated to the condition of state of Guanabara (name of the large bay which washes the city or Rio); however, in 1975, Guanabara was incorporated to the state of Rio and returned to the condition of municipality, with the old name of city of Rio de Janeiro.

Origins

June 21, 2008

Within Brazil’s current borders, most native tribes who were living in the land by the year 1500 are thought to have descended from the first wave of migrants from North Asia (Siberia), who are believed to have crossed the Bering Land Bridge at the end of the last Ice Age, around 9000 BC. At the time of European discovery, the territory of modern Brazil had as many as 2,000 nations and tribes, an estimated total population of nearly 3 million Amerindians. A somewhat dated linguistic survey found 188 living indigenous languages with 155,000 total speakers. On 18 January 2007, Fundação Nacional do Índio reported that it had confirmed the presence of 67 different uncontacted tribes in Brazil, up from 40 in 2005. With this addition, Brazil is now confirmed as having the largest number of uncontacted peoples in the world, even more than the island of New Guinea. When the Portuguese arrived in 1500, the Amerindians were mostly semi-nomadic tribes, living mainly on the coast and along the banks of major rivers.

Unlike Christopher Columbus who thought he had reached the East Indies, the Portuguese, most notably by Vasco da Gama, had already reached India via the Indian Ocean route when they reached Brazil. Nevertheless, the word índios (“Indians”) was by then established to designate the peoples of the New World and stuck being used today in the Portuguese language, while the people of India are called indianos in order to distinguish the two peoples. Initially, the Europeans saw the natives as noble savages, and miscegenation of the population began right away. Tribal warfare, cannibalism, and the pursuit of brazilwood for its treasured red dye convinced the Portuguese that they should civilize the Amerindians.

When to Go

May 18, 2008

The weather is worth considering when planning a trip to Brazil, as it can have a significant bearing on how you enjoy certain regions of the country. For example, the Amazon region is one of the world’s rainiest places, making travel exceedingly difficult between January and May. Similarly, if you plan to go to the Pantanal, do so during the dry season. The rest of the year, roads are washed out and travel is a nightmare. The south has the most extreme temperatures and during the coldest winter months snow is even possible – but rare.

During summer (December-February) many Brazilians are on vacation, making travel expensive and frequently booked out, and, from Rio to the south, the humidity can be oppressive. However, summer is also the most festive time of year, as Brazilians take to the beaches and streets. School holidays begin in mid-December and go through to Carnaval, usually held in late February.

Brazil’s low season corresponds to its winter. Rio temperatures hover around 23°C (73°F), with a mix of both rainy and superb days. With the exception of July, which is also a school-holiday month, this is the cheapest and least-crowded time to visit the country.

Brasília

May 8, 2008

Brasília is the capital of Brazil. It is coterminous with the Distrito Federal (Federal District) and borders the states of Goiás and Minas Gerais. The city and the district are located in the Central-West region of the country, along a plateau known as Planalto Central. It has a population of about 2,455,903 as of the 2007 IBGE census, making it the fifth largest city in Brazil. It is listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

As the national capital, Brasília is the seat of all three branches of the Brazilian government. The city also hosts the headquarters of many Brazilian companies such as the Bank of Brazil, Caixa Econômica Federal and Brasil Telecom. The city is still, a world reference for urban planning. The locating of residential buildings around expansive urban areas, of building the city around large avenues and dividing it into sectors, has sparked a debate and reflection on life in big cities in the 20th century. The city’s planned design included specific areas for almost everything, including accommodation – Hotel Sectors North and South. However, new areas are now being developed as locations for hotels, such as the Hotels and Tourism Sector North, located on the shores of Lake Paranoá. Brasília offers modern and comfortable hotels, including hotels managed by international chains; but it also offers cozy and modest inns, pensions and hostels. In terms of gastronomy, Brasília is a world capital. Being a city that receives visitors from the whole of Brazil and the world, it offers a good range of restaurants with great diversity of food.

The city was planned and developed in 1956 with Lúcio Costa as the principal urban planner and Oscar Niemeyer as the principal architect. In 1960, it formally became Brazil’s national capital. When seen from above, the city’s shape resembles an airplane or a butterfly[2][3]. The city is commonly referred to as Capital Federal, Capital da Esperança (which translates to Capital of Hope), or simply BSB[4]. People from the city of Brasília are known as brasilienses or candangos.

The Brasília International Airport is a major hub for the rest of the country, connecting the capital to all major Brazilian cities and many international destinations.

The city is home of University of Brasília.

Brazil

May 8, 2008

Brazil officially the Federative Republic of Brazil (Portuguese: Brasil or República Federativa do Brasil), is a country in South America.[2] It is the fifth-largest country by geographical area, the fifth most populous country, and the fourth most populous democracy in the world. The official language is Portuguese.[3] Roman Catholicism is the predominant religion.

Bounded by the Atlantic Ocean on the east, Brazil has a coastline of over 7,367 kilometres (4577 miles).[2] Brazil borders every nation on the South American continent except Ecuador and Chile. Venezuela, Suriname, Guyana and the department of French Guiana are to the north, Colombia to the northwest, Bolivia and Peru to the west, Argentina and Paraguay to the southwest, and Uruguay to the south.[2] Numerous archipelagos are part of the Brazilian territory, such as Penedos de São Pedro e São Paulo, Fernando de Noronha, Trindade and Martim Vaz and Atol das Rocas.[2][4]

Brazil is crossed by both the Equator and Tropic of Capricorn, and as such is home to a vast array of flora and fauna, natural environments, and extensive natural resources. Its region within the tropics is, by far, the largest of any country; about twice as large as that of Australia. The Brazilian population is concentrated along the coastline and in a few large urban centers in the interior. While Brazil is one of the most populous nations in the world, population density drops dramatically as one moves inland.[5]

Brazil was a colony of Portugal from the landing of Pedro Álvares Cabral in 1500 until its independence in 1822. Initially independent as the Brazilian Empire, the country has been a republic since 1889, although the bicameral legislature (now called Congress) dates back to 1824, when the first constitution was ratified. Its current Constitution defines Brazil as a Federal Republic.[3] The Federation is formed by the union of the States, the Federal District, and the Municipalities.[3] There are currently 26 States and 5,564 Municipalities.[6]

One of the ten largest economies in the world, the country has a diversified middle-income economy with wide variations in development levels and mature manufacturing, mining and agriculture sectors. Technology and services also play an important role and are growing rapidly. Brazil is a net exporter, having gone through free trade and privatization reforms in the 1990s.