Mapping Researches on Curriculum in Brazil

  • Alice Casimiro Lopes
  • Elizabeth Macedo
  • Edil lVasconcelos de Paiva


In Brazil, as well as in many other countries, historical studies have been conducted in the curriculum field trying to understand, up to a certain extent, how it has evolved throughout the years. One of the attempts to map these studies on curriculum carried out in different countries in the world generated the International Handbook of Curriculum Research , organized by William Pinar (2003). Pinar, himself, in a study published with Reynolds, Slattery and Taubman (1995), had already studied the contemporary discourses on curriculum, with an emphasis on the configuration of this field in the United States. In this study, the authors pointed to a reconceptualization of this field in the 1970s which originated, in the following decades, studies that focused on the development of curricula, which brought in a deeper concern the understanding of curriculum as a political text as well as a cultural text. In a more recent study, the same authors (2002) defended that, from the 1990s, there was an “explosion of cultural studies” (p.114), whereas the political interest was maintained, which characterized the reconceptualization. In the historical period analyzed by Pinar et al ., the great variety of voices in the curriculum field in the USA called the authors attention, as a kind of cacophony also pointed out by Franklin (1999). If in one hand this cacophony captures the multiplicity of studies and references, on the other hand, it brings the characteristics of isolated studies which have very little articulation, enough to build an area. Pinar et al . point out that they are not defending forms that define what a curriculum is, but they are arguing that collaborative work, with autonomy for the proliferation of ideologies and methodologies, is fundamental for a wider complexity of the field.