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What is Favela definition/concept/elaboration

In some large urban concentrations around the planet, there are population centers of extreme poverty and marginality. They are usually lands of illegal origin that are gradually being populated in a chaotic and disorderly manner and where living conditions are very precarious. This type of establishment is known as a favela. This term comes from the Portuguese spoken here in Brazil and refers to a very resistant plant, the faveila, used in the 19th century to build the homes of the first residents of this type of suburb in some Brazilian cities.

Although this phenomenon is associated with the large metropolises of Brazil and Latin America, it is a global reality that appears in large cities in Africa, Asia and countries like Spain (in Spain the word chabola serves to designate the sub-houses of these urban areas). Favela

General features

From an urban perspective, favelas lack basic services (supply of drinking water, electricity, and community services ). It should be noted that these are areas that develop far from urban planning programs in cities.

From a social point of view , favelas are a focus of poverty, marginality and violence. They have a very high population density and high unemployment rates. The social problems associated with numbers are: child malnutrition, illiteracy, drug abuse and high rates of crime, etc.

Although each favela has its own history and individuality, most of them are the result of the rural exodus to big cities. In this context, some individuals do not find a conventional life in big cities and are forced to live in slums.

Marginalization in urban space and the case of the “banlieues” in France

The favela is not the only focus of marginal urban space. In fact, when European cities began to grow wildly in the Middle Ages, urban spaces associated with the lower classes, the suburbs, were developed. In most cities today there are the well-known suburbs: marginal and run-down neighborhoods. A very particular example of suburbia happens in some cities in France. This phenomenon is known by the word banlieue, peripheral neighborhoods where there is permanent social tension. Favela

The social exclusion in urban areas have different names: favela, suburb, suburbs, ghetto or banlieue. Regardless of the words used, the people who live in these places find themselves in a kind of apartheid.

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