Federico Brito Figueroa (November 2, 1921 — April 28, 2000) was a renowned Venezuelan Marxist historian and anthropologist.
Born in La Victoria in Venezuela, Brito was a member of Venezuela's National Democratic Party (Partido Democrático Nacional — PDN, which later renamed Acción Democrática) in 1936. Brito later, after profound schisms appeared in the Venezuelan left, joined the Venezuelan Communist Party (Partido Comunista de Venezuela — PCV), together with Domingo Maza Zavala and Luis Miquilena].
In 1946 Brito entered the Instituto Pedagógico Nacional (National Teaching Institute) in order to obtain the title of professor of social sciences. Brito later travelled to México. There, he studied in the Escuela Nacional de Antropología e Historia (National School of Anthropology and History). Along with Wenceslao Roces and François Chavalier, Brito graduated with a degree in ethnology and antropology. Brito returned to Venezuela in 1959, after Marcos Pérez Jiménez's toppling, and began studies at the Universidad Central de Venezuela and was licensed as a historian and obtained his doctorate in anthropology. Brito's doctoral thesis was the renowned and influential work La estructura económica de Venezuela colonial (The Economic Structure of Colonial Venezuela), which he wrote in 1963 and published in 1978.
Key points of his works included the elucidation of slavery, the study of Venezuelan "Federal War" general Ezequiel Zamora, and a critical and probing analysis of the socioeconomic underpinnings of both colonialism and neocolonialism. Brito's works and theories strongly influenced the thinking of current Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez. Brito died in Caracas on April 28, 2000.
Ezequiel Zamora. Un capitulo de la historia nacional, Caracas, 1951
Liberacion de los esclavos, Caracas, 1951
Venezuela, siglo XX, 1967
La estructura económica de Venezuela colonial, Caracas, 1978
Tiempo de Ezequiel Zamora, Caracas, 1981
El problema tierra y esclavos en la historia de Venezuela, Caracas, 1982
Historia económica y social de Venezuela: Una estructura para su estudio, Caracas, 1979/1987