My research deals with democracy and democratization, subjects generally reserved for social scientists. As a historian I cast the focus on the historical development of democratic institutions and the meaning and value contemporaries assigned to democracy. My dissertation deals with the development and setbacks of democracy in Brazil between the Revolution of 1930 and the dictatorial constitution of 1967. Comparisons principally with the United States serve to introduce unique historical research questions and place Brazil in a more appropriate context than cosigning Brazil to a Latin American narrative to which it does not belong. A global context helps situate Brazil's story in the global history of democracy and provides valuable insights into the history of developing nations as they attempt to become both modern economies and modern democracies.