Misha Glenny continues his exploration of the little known but extraordinary events that have shaped Brazil. This week, two unexpected events in Brazil's path to independence. The first occurred in 1808, when the entire Portuguese court moved across the Atlantic to escape Napoleon. They lived in Rio de Janeiro, which they enjoyed so much that they stayed on for another 13 years. The second occurred in 1822 when the King of Portugal's son, Dom Pedro, declared 'Independence or Death', breaking Brazil free from her European overlords. We reveal that the British were heavily involved in both events.
"As quid pro quo for escorting the Portuguese across the Atlantic, the British ended up arm twisting the Portuguese royal court into signing a very one sided treaty, which in fact ended up giving the British more rights than the Brazilians themselves." Patrick Wilcken, author Empire Adrift.
A fast paced and astounding story of war and slavery, featuring Luciana Martins of Birkbeck College, Emeritus Professor David Brookshaw, and the best-selling Brazilian author Laurentino Gomez, author of 1808: How a Weak Prince, A Mad Queen, and the British Navy Tricked Napoleon and Changed the World.
Presenter: Misha Glenny
Producer: Miles Warde.