Volume 35, 2018
Philosophical Traditions in Latin America
Two Interpreters of the History of Philosophy in Brazil
This paper analyzes two interpreters of the history of philosophy in Brazil. Sílvio Romero in the second half of the 19th century publishes Philosophy in Brazil, the first text exclusively dedicated to this subject. Inspired by Auguste Comte’s positivism, the author judges all the philosophers who preceded him as incapable of developing the new sciences and, hence, as still bound to what he calls “old metaphysics”. João Cruz Costa in the middle of the 1940s refused his predecessor’s idealism and proposed to them as the philosophical object par excellence the inheritance of the Brazilian colonial past, as it was closer to what he called national “reality”. Both authors exemplify sufficiently well the legitimacy conferred on the historiographical discourse in Brazil, and also contribute to the lack of authorization given to the place of speech proper to the philosopher.