Th e chapters in this volume examine many aspects of the relationship between policing and society in Brazil. As will become clear, there are very tight linkages between many of the most important features of Brazilian life and the police and their problems. Crime is among the issues facing the police, but the list is much longer. In this essay, we describe this police-society nexus, and examine the possibilities for reform in Brazilian policing. Along the way, we point to specifi c chapters in this book that address the issues we raise, but in more detail. Th ese chapters are based on research by experienced observers of the Brazilian scene, and much of what they report is presented here in English for the fi rst time.