Cidade de Deus, Rio’s most famous West Zone favela, was made (in)famous thanks to the book and international blockbuster by the same name, City of God. The community today is occupied by a Pacifying Policy Unit (UPP). Here we interview Iara Oliveira, a CDD (as the community is popularly known) teacher and political activist. Iara is coordinator of Alfazendo, a community-based NGO in Cidade de Deus. Alfazendo’s focus is literacy for community residents of all ages, but they also serve as an advocacy organization and provide general educational opportunities and enrichment for the community. Mostly self-educated, Iara has built her career More >