Between punishment, protection and redemption: Negotiating the moral authority of religious security providers in Rio de Janeiro


This research examines the interplay between religion, security, and authority in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Whereas by law Brazil is a secular state, in practice religion occupies an important role in the organization of public life. Furthermore, non-state actors such as drug gangs and paramilitary groups control large parts of the city’s shantytowns or favelas. Recent years have seen a shift in non-state actors’ religious beliefs from Afro-Brazilian traditions to Evangelical Christianity. This project examines the consequences of this shift for the ways in which residents perceive the authority of non-state actors and their ability to provide security.
Publications: Bandits, victims, or sinners? Negotiating public security provision in Brazil (non-academic).