Topics course.: A favela is a distinct, irregular, unplanned community in Brazil. Characterized by self-help construction methods and inadequate access to public services, these communities grew out of protest and have etched themselves into the permanent landscape and fabric of Brazil. Intrinsically, the culture of slavery, which was successfully maintained through terror and spectacular punishment, continues to inform the favelas today as many actors including local leaders, politicians, the Church, drug traffickers, militias, NGOs, residents, and the police have tried to govern these sprawling communities with varying degrees of success. Through articles, books, films and guest lecturers, this course will introduce the rich history of favelas and describe how the distinct spectacle of violence, commodification and speculation is deeply embedded in the (re)production of favelas in Brazil.