Marilena de Souza Chaui

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Marilena de Souza Chaui
Marilena chauí flickr.jpg
Chaui in 2010
Personal details
Born (1941-09-04) September 4, 1941 (age 75)
São Paulo, State of Sao Paulo
Profession philosopher, professor

Marilena de Souza Chaui (born September 4, 1941) is a Brazilian philosopher and member of the Workers' Party.


Chaui is a Professor of Political Philosophy and History of Modern Philosophy in the University of São Paulo, having been awarded a master's degree in 1967, and received her doctorate in 1971 with the essay "Introduction to Reading Spinoza", under the guidance of Professor Gilda de Mello e Souza Rocha. In 1977, she taught Philosophy in the University of São Paulo.[1]

Her book What is Ideology? was selected by the Ministry of Education and Culture of Brazil as a mandatory textbook in public schools, becoming a bestseller with over a hundred thousand copies sold. Chaui had served as Municipal Secretary of Culture of São Paulo, from 1989 to 1992, during the administration of Luiza Erundina (1988-1992). In 2013, during the release of the book "10 Years of Post-Liberal Government in Brasil: Lula and Dilma", Marilena received a negative reception when during her speech she stated that : "It's because I hate the middle class. The middle class is a delay of life. The middle class is stupidity. It is what we have as the most reactionary, conservative, ignorant, cocky, arrogant, terrorist... The middle class is a political abomination, because it is fascist. It is an ethical abomination because it is violent. It is a cognitive abomination..."

She has been accused by some as inciting hatred and using several derogatory terms against a portion of the population, particularly the middle class as being too reactionary, while praising the current president Dilma Rousseff and Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and populist criticisms against the Brazilian middle-class.


Chaui is the daughter of the journalist Nicholas Alberto Chaui, of Arabic origin, and teacher Laura de Souza Chaui. She was married to the journalist José Augusto de Mattos Berlinck, with whom she had two sons - William Joseph and Luciana. She is currently married to Michael Hall, a historian and professor at the State University of Campinas.

Partial Bibliography[edit]

She is the author of, among others,

  • O que é Ideologia? (What is Ideology?)
  • Escritos sobre a Universidade (Writings on University)
  • Cultura e Democracia: o discurso competente e outras falas (Culture and Democracy: The competent speech and other speeches )
  • Da realidade sem mistério ao mistério do mundo: Espinosa (Spinoza, Voltaire e Merleau-Ponty (From the Reality without mysteries to the Mystery of the World: Spinoza, Voltaire and Merleau-Ponty)
  • A nervura do real: Imanência e Liberdade em Espinosa (The rib of the real: Immanence and Freedom in Spinoza )
  • Espinosa e Política em Espinosa (Spinoza and Politics in Spinoza)
  • Repressão Sexual (Sexual repression)
  • Brasil: Mito Fundador e Sociedade Autoritária ( Brazil: Founding Myth and Authoritarian Society)
  • Introdução à História da Filosofia (Introduction to the History of Philosophy)
  • Convite à Filosofia (Invitation to Philosophy)
  • Cidadania Cultural (Cultural citizenship)
  • Simulacro e poder (Simulacrum and power)


  1. ^ Marilena de Souza Chauí,, Retrieved 4 September 2016

External links[edit]