Brazil Distribution and General Characteristics of Inhabited Centers

By | January 8, 2022

According to Localcollegeexplorer, the limited number of cidades (795) and villas (505) numbered at the time of the last census, reminds us that, unlike what happens in the United States, the properly urban population represents a small part of the demographic element total. However, it should be noted that about the 27th part of the population of the whole of Brazil is concentrated in the capital of the Confederation.

Other important citizen nuclei are found in the southern coastal states where economic exploitation intensified after the constitution of the republic, and in some of the northern states (Bahia, Pernambuco) where it established itself, since the early days of the colonial period, the need to provide, with a large and appropriate workforce, the cultivation of typical tropical products. On the other hand, the dispersion of the population in nuclei that cannot even be assigned the name of village, is one of the characteristics, not only of the internal states of Goyaz and Matto Grosso, but also of the Amazonian states where, apart from the narrow areas along the Amazon River, its canals and its great navigable tributaries, the population appears exceptionally low, and, at certain times of the year,

Of the 1304 municipios numbered in 1920 having very different areas (among the capitals, the municipality of Fortaleza has just over 40 sq km, that of Nictheroy 71, while that of Manáos has 47,874 sq km. And that of Cuyabá 181,883), as well as Rio de Janeiro, only 12 offer a population exceeding 100,000 residents, and of them four belong to the state of St. Paul and three to that of Minas Geraes; while 84 have a variable population between 50 and 100,000 residents, 408 have from 20 to 50,000 residents, 450 from 10 to 20,000 residents, and 340 (including 71 in S. Paolo, 28 in Ceará, 27 in Goyaz and Pará, 26 in Bahia, 20 in Minas Geraes, 5 in Rio Grande do Sul, 4 in the state of Rio de Janeiro and 3 in those of Parahyba do Norte, Alagôas and Pernambuco) have a population of less than 10,000 residents.

Regardless of the federal capital which has 1,160,000 residents, among the capitals of the various states there are, in decreasing order of population, 1 with more than half a million residents, i.e. S. Paolo (579,033), 3 with a population varying between between 300 and 200,000 (São Salvador, capital of the state of Bahia; Recife, of Pernambuco; Belém, of Pará), 1 between 200 and 100,000 (Porto Alegre, of Rio Grande do Sul), 9 between 100 and 50,000 (Nictheroy, capital of the state of Rio de Janeiro; Curityba, of Paraná; Fortaleza, of Ceará; Manáos, of Amazonas; Maceió, of Alagôas; Therezina, of Piauhy; Bello Horizonte, of Minas Geraes; Parahyba, of Parahyba do Norte; São Luiz, of Maranhão), 6 between 50 and 20,000 (Florianopolis, of Santa Catharina; Aracajú, of Sergipe; Cuyabá, of Matto Grosso; Natal, of Rio Grande do Norte; Victoria, of Espirito Santo; Goyaz,capital of the homonymous state).

As is usually the case in any vast region where traces of the stratification of different civilizations are perceptible, and above all those of the transformation that the landscape has undergone by virtue of the colonizing work, only in the interior of Brazil can we still find characteristic types of dwellings that are partly the result of the imitation of indigenous types and partly the reproduction of types characteristic of the various homelands of the settlers, while the coastal cities, and, in general, the major centers of economic life, are losing their signs of differentiation day by day, to acquire the common appearance of many cities in America and Europe. In fact, inside the five types of dwelling established by Brandt can be easily found; the simple stone house with windows facing the inner courtyard, located in Manáos; the Moorish type house, so widely represented in Spanish America; the typical tropical veranda common to the Mediterranean and Portuguese India; the house with two or more “dependencies” characterized by numerous windows; the house of the Italian type in the state of S. Paolo, of the Germanic type in the states of Rio Grande and Santa Catharina, of the Dutch type in Pernambuco, of the Polish type in Paraná. Even today in some large cities, such as in Recife, the forms of the primitive structure are clearly traceable, but elsewhere in the vital centers of the country, the imperative need for constructions has masked the primitive physiognomy, as happened in the old part of Rio de Janeiro.

Brazil Distribution and General Characteristics of Inhabited Centers