Brazil, its magnificent culture
Official name: Federative Republic of Brazil.
Nature of Political System: Presidential Federal Republic, composed of 26 states and a Federal District.
Head of State and/or Government: Mr. Jair Bolsonaro, since January 1, 2019.
Area: 8,511,965 km², ranked 5th in the world.
Main Villes : São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte, Porto Alegre, Salvador de Bahia, Fortaleza, Curitiba, Recife, Belém, Goiânia.
Official language : Portuguese.
Currency: Real .
National holiday: September 7.
Population: 209.4 million, 6th worldwide.
Density: 25 inhab/km².
Urbanization rate: 87%.
Population growth: 0.80.
Life expectancy: 75.45 years (71.80 years for men and 79.16 years for women).
Religion(s): Catholic (65%); Evangelical (22%).
Inhabited for more than 600 centuries, Brazil presents an eventful history since its colonization. The eviction of the Amerindian culture, the massive recourse to slavery more than the unbalanced development constitute its principal upheavals. They also often lead to a better understanding of a society where economic and racial issues are at the forefront.
It has been the official language of Brazil since the 1988 Constitution. The large majority of the population speaks this language, and it is consequently the language used in administrative documents and in the media (newspapers, radio, television, etc.). Most municipalities officiate in Portuguese, with a few exceptions. Nheengatu, Tucano and Baniwa d’Içana, Amerindian languages, have obtained the status of co-officier with Portuguese in São Gabriel da Cachoeira.
Brazilian Portuguese differs somewhat from European Portuguese, which can be explained by the encounter between the Portuguese colonists and the Amerindian peoples. The influence that the native languages had on the original Portuguese (as brought by the settlers) was indeed relatively significant: William Schurz, a diplomat, wrote in 1961 that nearly 20,000 words from the Amerindian languages were absorbed by Portuguese, of which the most famous (tobacco, cassava, jaguar, tapioca, hammock, etc.) also belonged to the French and English vocabulary.
Spanish, German and Italian:
They are also popular in Brazil. Since Italian and German migrants have been numerous in Brazil, many regions, especially in the south, have German or Italian as a co-official language. As for Spanish, it is the second most spoken language in the country.
From North to South, Brazil offers a diversity of breathtaking landscapes and natural sites. From the Amazonian plateau to the swamps of the Pantanal and the fine sandy beaches of southern Brazil, the Brazilian geography offers many faces.
In the north of Brazil flows the Amazon River which extends its bed from west to east, literally cutting the country in two.
This region has a hot and humid climate that allows the development of a luxurious tropical forest extending over several million square kilometers. Considered as the lung of the world, the Amazon rainforest is therefore of paramount importance for the balance of the planet. It alone produces 15% of the Earth’s available fresh water. The forest’s capacity to absorb huge quantities of CO2 makes it a major player in the fight against global warming. Brazil is therefore implementing numerous actions to preserve the forest, which is home to a large number of endangered species.
In the center of Brazil lies the Mato Grosso region. This swampy area is largely occupied by the Pantanal Natural Park, an ecological sanctuary with a unique biodiversity. A paradise for lovers of wildlife observation, the Pantanal is an ideal destination for lovers of green tourism.
Moreover, the south of Brazil, it is characterized by its economic activity. This area, which represents 10% of the country’s surface area, is home to 40% of the population. Real economic hearts, the urban centers of Sao Paulo and Rio are the main attractions of this region.
The Brazilian gastronomy:
A colonial cuisine with Portuguese and African influences.
The names of Brazilian dishes usually consist of a mixture of Portuguese and African terms. The country’s colonial past has left its mark on the Brazilian culinary art. Arriving Portuguese settlers adapted their country’s recipes with local ingredients.
Para cuisine is therefore the most traditional in Brazil.
In the heart of the Amazon rainforest, the State of Para, little affected by colonization, has thus preserved a traditional cuisine. The Paraense gastronomy is composed of ingredients provided by the river and the surrounding forest.
Religions in Brazil:
A country where spirituality is an essential dimension of life.
In Brazil, gods are everywhere, religion is part of the daily life of the vast majority of the population.
The Catholic religion, the country with the largest number of baptized people in the world.
The modern shamanism of Brazil, The syncretic religions of Ayahuasca, a Brazilian specificity.
Spiritualism in Brazil, A religion of communication with the Spirits.
The Protestant religion in Brazil, the second religion in Brazil behind the huge Catholic Church, Protestantism has evolved in recent decades into a belief largely governed by the audiovisual means offered by the modern era.
Candomblé in Brazil, the Afro-Brazilian religion born from the encounter between African, European and Amerindian cultures.
and Other Religions in Brazil…
Music and Art in Brazil.
It is an integral part of Brazilian daily life and is a strong claim of identity. Brazil where contemporary music with Afro roots.
Its cultural richness and abundant innovation are therefore based on the country’s strong crossbreeding. Its best known genres are the samba (the most Brazilian music), the bossa nova or the sensuality of Brazilian rhythms and the forro where the traditional music and dance of the Nordeste is found. They are finally completed by a contemporary scene with often social demands. Without forgetting reggae, funk carioca and rap. Music is certainly the most popular art form in Brazil.
A cultural fact of European origin, emblematic of the “spirit of joy” of Brazil:
Micareta, the festival that prolongs the Brazilian carnival!
Born by chance in Feira de Santana, the micareta (“the feast of Mi-Carême”) is one of the most popular fora de época (“outside of carnival”) events in Brazil. It is largely focused on street festivities.
The pre-carnival, a preparation for traditional festivities.
Frequently starting 2 to 3 weeks before the beginning of Lent, the Brazilian pre-carnival allows blocos, bandas and samba schools to prepare the official ceremonies. It also provides an additional opportunity to celebrate.
A carnival rhythmed by frevo in Recife and Olinda.
In Recife and Olinda, former colonial cities, the carnival is distinguished by its Brazilian and African influences. Picturesque, convivial, but also moving, it reserves an important place for frevo, a dance with frenetic rhythms, emblematic of the political and racial struggles of the Northeast.
In Salvador de Bahia, the most animated carnival in Brazil.
Salvador de Bahia hosts the most animated and mixed carnival in Brazil. The madness frequently lasts from January to March in a very warm atmosphere! It is mainly organized around the spectacular parades of the neighborhoods and the trios elétricos.
Rio, the most famous carnival, between samba and extravagance.
Famous all over the world, Rio de Janeiro’s Carnival combines uninterrupted popular festivities and balls throughout the city. The grandiose parades of samba schools are flagship events.
The most popular sport in Brazil is soccer. In the FIFA world ranking, the national team (also known as the Seleção) has been throughout its history ranked among the best teams in the world. Brazilian soccer is world famous: the Seleção has won the World Cup five times (1958, 1962, 1970, 1994 and 2002), more than any other country. Brazil is also known for being the only team that has never missed any World Cup finals.
Capoeira, a typical sport in Brazil
It is an Afro-Brazilian martial art developed in colonial times by African slaves. In the 16th century, Portuguese colonists separated and mixed different African tribes to reduce the risk of revolts, which brought several populations into contact. From this heterogeneous grouping would then be born the first form of capoeira, an art skillfully mixing dance and fighting techniques. The first capoeiristas trained to fight by hiding their martial art under the appearance of a game; so, when the masters approached, the martial character was disguised by music and songs, the fight quickly turning into a kind of dance in the form of an agile game that deceived their mistrust and prevented them from seeing the bellicose character of capoeira.
Slaves could thus train for combat without arousing the suspicions of the settlers, who thought it was just another slave “brincadeira” (game or entertainment in Portuguese). Capoeira was also said to have been conceived and practiced in “quilombos”, secret refuges for runaway slaves created in inaccessible places in order to escape and resist their torturers. The best known, “O Quilombo dos Palmares” lasted more than a century and has been the subject of many songs and its most famous representative, Zumbi dos Palmares, is one of the figures of the resistance of African slaves.
Why we love BRAZIL:
Sport is very important and of great cultural importance it is practiced all over the world.
So when you travel to Brazil, you often fall in love with its landscapes, but always with its friendly people.
Brazilians are therefore the warmest people in the world, eager to communicate and curious about others. The Brazilian culture is thus the first support of identity, it was first built through exchanges; each ethnic group has therefore made its contribution, forming a whole that has given the people we know today.
Each Brazilian, while obviously a unique and irreplaceable individual, is also the sum of these multicultural contributions. The peculiarity of The Brazilian identity reflects multiple legacies on a daily basis.