Evicted for Entertainment: Brazil’s 2014 World Cup Prep & Beyond

Rocinha Favela: One of Brazil’s largest slums, lying in prime location next to Rio’s city center. Photo: Wikimedia commonsWith the 2014 FIFA World Cup right around the corner and the 2016 Summer Olympics shortly thereafter, the city of Rio de Janiero in Brazil has been making significant strides to clean itself up and prepare for the estimated 79% increase in international visitors for the games. These preparations include over USD $25 billion to renovate Rio’s Maracana stadium, build a futuristic Olympic Park, improve tourism, and intensify police and security. The poorest areas of Rio have seen significantly positive changes such as the reduction of crime, increased tourism, and the development of restaurants, music venues, and dance clubs. However, as seen in prior instances of global-event preparation, there are always cases of neglect, where the most vulnerable areas of society bear the burden. In the case of Rio, the poorest of the poor are the focal point in preparation for the events, for better and for worse.

by Sofia Murad