Religious Conflict in Brazil

Protestants, Catholics, and the Rise of Religious Pluralism in the Early Twentieth Century

Erika Helgen

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June 23, 2020
328 pages, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4
ISBN: 9780300243352
HC - Paper over Board

The story of how Brazilian Catholics and Protestants confronted one of the greatest shocks to the Latin American religious system in its 500-year history

This innovative study explores the transition in Brazil from a hegemonically Catholic society to a religiously pluralistic society. With sensitivity and nuance, Erika Helgen shows that the rise of religious pluralism was fraught with conflict and violence, as Catholic bishops, priests, and friars organized intense campaigns against Protestantism. These episodes of religious violence were not isolated outbursts of reactionary rage, but rather formed part of a longer process through which religious groups articulated their vision for Brazil’s national future.

Erika Helgen is assistant professor of Latin American Christianity at Yale University. She is the recipient of the Arthur and Mary Wright Yale Dissertation Prize, the Robert M. Leylan Fellowship for Research in the Humanities and Social Sciences, and a Fulbright Fellowship.

“Erika Helgen’s masterful work is bound to redefine the way in which twentieth-century Brazilian religious history is approached and understood. This is religious history at its best.”—Carlos Eire, author of Reformations