Euclides da Cunha: A Life Between the Disciplines

Peter J. Shields Lobby
Fall Quarter 2010 - Winter Quarter 2011

Euclides da Cunha (1866-1909), noted Brazilian writer and intellectual, published in 1902 his masterpiece, Os Sertões (Rebellion in the Backlands). Considered to be an outstanding work of Brazilian literature and a major contribution to world literature, Os Sertões is da Cunha.s account of the messianic religious uprising that led to the tragic 1897 Canudos War. Over the past century Os Sertões has influenced both Latin American authors and international novelists, including Mario Vargas Llosa's La guerra del fin del mundo (The War of the End of the World, 1981), as well as inspired several films and documentaries.

Da Cunha.s interdisciplinary career spanned many fields beyond his work as a journalist employed by the newspaper A ProvĂ­ia de São Paulo (Estado de São Paulo) to send back first hand observations from Canudos and the Bahia. Trained as an engineer, da Cunha built sturdy bridges and schools that are in use over one hundred years later. A dedicated essayist, da Cunha published articles on themes that ranged from Brazilian history, geography, nationality, and diplomatic relationships among nations, to topics about Latin American and European history. Da Cunha was a prolific poet with an extensive oeuvre of Romantic poems. A cartographer, da Cunha helped negotiate and demarcate Brazil.s Amazonian border with Peru. An educator, a geographer and an early environmental scientist, da Cunha.s work in the Amazon culminated with the posthumous publication of À Margem da História.

A symposium, "Euclides da Cunha: A Life Between the Disciplines," is a unique collaboration between the Department of Spanish and Portuguese and the UC Davis University Library. Scheduled for Friday, November 5, 2010, the symposium will commemorate the life and career of Euclides da Cunha. The accompanying exhibit will be on display in the Shields Library Lobby through Winter Quarter 2011.

Euclides da Cunha: A Life Between the Disciplines -- A Symposium
Euclides da Cunha Bibliography

Shields Library Lobby Exhibit prepared by Myra Appel, Head, Humanities, Social Sciences and Government Information Services Department/Bibliographer, Latin American Studies ( and Professors Leopoldo Bernucci and Robert Newcomb (Department of Spanish and Portuguese). Assistance provided by Tim Silva (graphics) and Alison Lanius (display).


Euclides da