The book examines the social construction of legal relations between people and things in Brazil between the 1830s and 1890s. To this end, the research focuses on 74 legal proceedings of the Court of ... weiterlesenAppeals of Rio de Janeiro discussing dominion and possession over slaves and land. The first chapter assesses the contours that the legal category of possession acquired in 19th-century Brazil. It analyzes the role of social recognition in the configuration of situations of possession. This chapter also describes how interpretations of theories of possession delegitimized acts of land usage employed by certain groups – namely: indigenous and agregados – as possessory acts. The second chapter analyzes the debates over domain titles and the process of document production undertaken by parties in legal proceedings. It also highlights the role of judicial demarcations in this process of production and shows how courts often disregarded titles issued by married women. The chapter closes with a discussion of the new configurations that debates over titles acquired in the last decades of the century. The third chapter focuses on cases of illegal and irregular acquisitions of slaves and land. The detailed analyses of the court cases presented in the book show that during the 19th century the construction of property rights in Brazil built upon the pre-existing structures of ius commune, whose categories were re-signified.