Cunha, Euclides da (āˌŏklēˈdĭsh dä kōˈnyə) [key], 1866–1909, Brazilian writer. After his military service, Cunha became a civil engineer and a journalist. He wrote several historical works but is remembered for only one book, Os sertões (1902, tr. Rebellion in the Backlands, 1944), an account of a rebellion against the Brazilian government led by a religious fanatic, Antônio Conselheiro, in 1896–97. The book is a pessimistic narrative, embellished with lengthy descriptions of the Brazilian landscape and living conditions; it is primarily concerned with the state of mankind in Brazil. Its power and sincerity counterbalance its complexity of style and racist doctrine.
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