David Thompson has been travelling around South America since he completed his Honours thesis on cosmpolitanism and urban poverty in Latin America at The Univeristy of Sydney, Australia, in late 2010. He is currently in Rio de Janeiro, where he is flash-researching the Ocupa Rio protests. This is the first entry in a two-part series. Part II, 'Excavating Ocupa Rio II: Trouble on Love Street', was published on Wednesday 9th November, 2011.
On Saturday October 22 a group of approximately sixty protesters began an occupation of the Floriano Plaza, a historical point of protest located in Cinelândia, part of the city's financial centre. While the first meeting was on October 15 next to the nearby Municipal Theatre to decide on whether to protest, the following Saturday was the beginning of a permanent presence and camp in the plaza, which has seen crowds of up to 500 people and approximately 120 tents.