Pellacani, Dante (1923–1981)

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Pellacani, Dante (1923–1981)

Dante Pellacani (b. 6 March 1923; d. 6 August 1981), Brazilian trade unionist and president of the Commando Geral dos Trabalhadores (CGT). Born and educated in São Paulo, Pellacani went to work in a printing plant at age fourteen. Swept up in the political opening of 1944–1946 while in the army, Pellacani led São Paulo's printers in 1948 to demand the end of government intervention in their union. That same year he joined the Brazil Communist Party (PCB) from which he was expelled ten years later. A key figure in the state labor movement, he was elected president of the National Federation of Printing Workers. Allied with the PCB and the Brazilian Labor Party (PTB), Pellacani created a ticket-splitting "Jan-Jan movement" (Jânio Quadros and Jango Goulart) in the 1960 presidential elections. In 1961, he was named to the National Social Welfare Department and served as director general from 1962–1963. Elected president of the CGT in 1963, he simultaneously held office in the National Confederation of Workers in Industry (CNTI). A strong supporter of President Goulart's "basic reforms," he played a key role in the general strikes and popular mobilizations of March 1964. After the 31 March military coup outlawed the CGT, and "intervened" (restricted) the CNTI, Pellacani went into exile in Uruguay. Returning in 1969, he rededicated himself to union and political activities.

See alsoBrazil, Organizations: General Labor Command (CGT); Communism; Labor Movements.


Israel Beloch and Alzira Alves De Abreu, Dicionário históricobiográfico brasileiro 1930–1983, vol. 3 (1984); for an interesting interview with Pellacani, see Lourenço Dantas Mota, ed., A historia vivida, vol. 2 (1981), pp. 283-306.

Additional Bibliography

Alexander, Robert Jackson, and Eldon M. Parker. A History of Organized Labor in Brazil. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2003.

French, John D., and Alexandre Fortes. Urban Labor History in Twentieth Century Brazil. Albuquerque: Latin American Institute, University of New Mexico, 1998.

Negro, Antonio Luigi. Linhas de montagem: O industrialismo nacional-desenvolvimentista e a sindicalização dos trabalhadores, 1945–1978. São Paulo: FAPESP: Boitempo Editorial, 2004.

                                      John D. French

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