Way of life, Brazil, South America

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Lifestyles in Brazil's urban areas differ greatly from those in its rural areas.

Brazil's big cities have impressive skyscrapers tower above busy downtown streets, and streams of cars and trucks jam wide expressways at rush hours.

Large numbers of city dwellers work in banks, factories, hotels, office buildings, and stores. Many own businesses. Others hold government or professional jobs. Many middle-class city dwellers live in modern apartments.

Like most large North American cities, Brazil's big cities face such problems as overcrowding, poverty, and slums (Favelas).

Most of the people who live in Brazil's rural areas work on large plantations or ranches. Some others have their own small farms. Most rural Brazilians earn little money and can barely feed their families. Malnutrition and poverty are especially widespread in the dry interior of the northeast.

Most rural families live in small one- or two-room houses made of stone or adobe with roofs of red or orange clay tiles.

During the middle and late 1900's, many farmworkers moved to the cities in hope of finding well-paying factory jobs. As a result, the percentage of Brazilians living in rural areas dropped sharply.

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