There is no way to predict how a nation will deal with past collective actions that don’t match the image its citizens now have of themselves. They may confront the regretted event right after it ended or generations later. They may accuse or mourn. They may seek revenge or remembrance. They may want to profit from the examination or simply learn from it. A nation may decide to forget or indefinitely postpone looking at its painful past.
Similar to various other Latin American countries, Brazil suffered through a right-wing military dictatorship from 1964 to 1985.1 The aim of this dictatorship was to eliminate any and all threats of communist uprising within the country. This is similar to Chile, Argentina, and Uruguay, but, unlike such countries, Brazil has only now acknowledged the torture and other atrocities committed during the 21-year dictatorship.