Modern Languages and Literatures, Department of


Date of this Version



Social Justice Review (December, 1975), pp. 252-254


It is difficult to introduce Gilberto Freyre, one of Brazil's most outstanding and well-known contemporary thinkers, because of the multi-faceted nature of his understanding and the versatility of his pen. Being both scientist and humanist, critic and artist. Freyre is perhaps best recognized as a sociologist and historian of his native land. However, he defies classification even in this last role as is well revealed in his essay. "Como e Porque sou e nao sou Sociologo" ("How and Why I Am and Am Not a Sociologist"). Criticizing the conventional hermetic specialization and unbending insistence upon objectivity, he asserts that "man's social life cannot sensibly be fragmented into particles and scrutinized by specialists using purely mathematical methods or techniques of quantitative analysis."