Culture Cafe: Brazil
Welcome to Café Cultural, that’s the way how we would welcome you on our meetings in Brazil! Yes, our cold Wednesday was especially hot and sunny, thanks for it to our ESN international student Rubem Ribeiro Junior. We had a chance to feel like it’s summer again and to smile a little bit more than usually. Want to know more? Stay tuned and read our article!
First thing to start with is language spoken in Brazil: it’s Portuguese, not Spanish! As we think, you’re aware of everything else, it’s big and beautiful country with incredible nature and amazing people, it’s one of the best places to spend your holidays, to forget about your problems and to understand how different our world can be. Not the most pleasant, but one of the most important facts about Brazil – it’s considered to be the most murderous country around the world. Homicide rates 5 times higher than global average, every 18 hours someone can be killed, this sounds terrible and it’s horrible indeed. But this became part of life, part of culture, an integral part, which had a great influence on people’s mind and attitude to life. November 20th – Black Consciousness Day in Brazil, it’s Black Awareness Day as a day to «celebrate a regained awareness by the black community about their great worth and contribution to the country». You can feel the real atmosphere by visiting favelas, but it’s dangerous for ordinary people, even those who live in Brazil, and it’s frightening to find out the real life there. However, these kinds of districts in Brazil, mostly in Rio, are famous not only for criminals and devastating life, a lot of creative and hardworking people live there. Sometimes when you can’t change anything, you need at least try, so these people do. Some of them try architecture, others put their efforts into reflecting their life into art etc. It’s not the end of the world, it’s just another world with its rules and its habitants, it’s something we haven’t got used to, but that’s the magic of our enormous world – it’s extremely big and different in all aspects.
Let’s move to another inalienable part of Brazilian culture – football. Everybody knows how good Brazil at this kind of sport is! Of course, it’s 5 times champion in the FIFA’s Males world cup (1958, 1962, 1970, 1994, 2002). There are plenty fans of Brazilian football teams and footballers from all over the world, and also Brazilians are crazy about it. But is Brazil only the football country? Our answer is definitely no! It’s a sport country, very active and variative, the only requirement is – sun and good mood! Brazil is world biggest champion of volleyball, and this game is also popular among all the population: people watch it, support their team and play it at their spare time. They have special, non-official kind of sport entertainment, mixed variant of football and volleyball – footvolley. It’s game played usually near the beach, on the sand, under the hot sun and with your friends or anyone who is full of desire to have fun. It’s real Brazilian love, an entire new sport created and developed in the country.
If you want something fresh and bracing, then try surfboard, Brazil is perfect place to catch a wave and practice your skills. Or maybe you don’t want to be wet then skateboarding matches you. Vast areas to skate and a lot of people to make acquaintances with, isn’t it a dream? And we can’t skip martial arts. Brazil is known for extraordinary capoeira and very technique jiu-jitso. It’s your time to make choice, or even better to try all!
Brazilian larger cities like San Paulo and Rio de Janeiroboast unique culture, personality and nightlife, and thousands of miles of coastline, epic countryside and hearty cuisine will have you in raptures. You can’t live Brazil without trying barbecued meat, as Brazil is claimed to be a barbecue champion. Don’t forget about moqueca served with theatrical flourish as the piping hot clay pot is uncovered at the table amid clouds of fragrant steam. One of the few dishes eaten the length and breadth of Brazil, feijoada is a hearty stew of black beans, sausages and cuts of pork of varying quality – traditionally veering towards the lower end with trotters and ears all going into the mix. And if you’re occasionally attend kids party, don’t miss opportunity to feel the taste of fried bar snacks, we haven’t tried yet but sounds delicious!
And the last thing we want you to tell about. Can you imagine Brazil without parties and carnivals? Honestly, we can’t, and we don’t have to, it’s cultural traditions, it’s the way they live their life. The most tremendous and marvelous is Revellion – the Brazilian New Year’s Eve, time to welcome New Year but with no snow.
As we cheered up, it’s hard to say goodbye now, but at the same time we’re full of enthusiasm for new adventures, great thanks to awesome Brazil! It was bright, breezy and unforgettable. All the new discovered is one more place to visit and one more aim to achieve! Follow us developing yourself and improving more and more. Looking forward to seeing you on our next Culture Café!
Text: Svetlana Dzhafarova