Cultural Gifts Afro-Brazilians Are Responsible For Creating And Sharing With The World

Brazil has the unfortunate history of being the country in the Western Hemisphere that transported the largest number of slaves from Africa.

This also means that the cultural legacy of Afro-Brazilians has left an impact on everything from the music to the food of Brazil. The following traditions, entertainment, and customs are just some of the ways negroes or pretos (the term used in Brazil to people with noticeably African features and skin color), and pardos (multiracial Brazilians) are influencing Brazil. Essentially, Brazil is beholden to their Afro-Brazilian population for some of the most iconic Brazilian things.

1. Samba

It is hard to imagine that the national music of Brazil was under police oppression until the 1930s. Some people were even arrested for dancing or playing samba publicly in the 19th century. Now, decades later, it is one of the most celebrated cultural contributions Brazil has made to the world.

2. Capoeira

African slaves in Brazil started practicing the martial art form of capoeira. Although regions of Brazil reprimanded Africans from practicing capoeira, Africans would keep practicing the art form, saying that it was a dance. This allowed them to learn to fight against their oppressors while seemingly dancing. The acrobatic movements are performed low to the ground and done with music.

3. Pagode music

This Brazilian country folk type of music started in the 1950s with the fusion of “Coco” and “Calango de roda” rhythms and the lyrics talk about love, nature, country life, booze and animals. Many Afro-Brazilians have helped pioneer this type of music and their legacy on the art form is palpable.

4. Flavorful cuisines

Some dishes that were already in existence in Brazil, such as feijoada, were given variations by ingredients and cooking styles used by African slaves. Expensive ingredients for the feijoada had to be substituted for more affordable substitutions such as pig ears, beans and manioc flour. The acaraje dish found around Brazil that is made from black-eyed peas is also found in Nigeria and Ghana.

5. African diasporic religions

Different types of religions practiced by blacks stem from their African roots, such as Candomblé. These different religions were brought over by African slaves to Brazil and are still practiced throughout the country, mostly in urban centers.

It took centuries for Brazil to finally recognize these important contributions from Afro-Latinos and stop criminalizing and ostracizing their contributions. Now the world can eat, drink and be merry thanks to the customs of Afro-Brazilians.

READ: The Brazilian Government Is Forcing Black People To Prove Their Blackness When Applying For Government Jobs

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Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro Blames Indigenous Tribes For Amazon Fires

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Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro Blames Indigenous Tribes For Amazon Fires

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President Jair Bolsonaro is blaming the indigenous community for the fires that raged in the Amazon. The fires set off international outrage as the rainforest faced unprecedented destruction by out of control fires. President Bolsonaro went against the rest of the international community during a speech to the U.N.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro wants the United Nations to know that indigenous people were responsible for the Amazon fires.

In a remote session opening the U.N. General Assembly, President Bolsonaro spoke at length about the indigenous communities starting the fires. He also used the speech to speak out against the criticism his administration is receiving over his environmental policies and his response to Covid. Brazil is currently the second most infected country in the world with the second highest death rate.

The Amazon has experienced increased fires since President Bolsonaro took office.

For the first seven months of 2020, 13,000 sq. km. (5,019 sq. miles) of the Brazilian rainforest have burned. This year saw the second-highest level of fires on a global scale with fires raging across the Amazon, Australia, and the West Coast of the U.S.

President Bolsonaro openly contradicted expert findings to fit his narrative.

President Bolsonaro claims that the humidity of the forest contains the fires. According to President Bolsonaro’s speech, fires in the Amazon only happen in certain areas because of how well the humidity can keep the fires in check.

“The fires practically occur in the same places, on the east side of the forest, where peasants and Indians burn their fields in already deforested areas,” Bolsonaro said.

President Bolsonaro’s speech touches on the environmental record his administration is known for.

The Bolsonaro administration has made dismantling environmental and indigenous rights since taking power. The administration has worked to limit the amount of land available to indigenous people and to open up Amazonian rainforest to miners, loggers, farmers, developers, and other uses that are damaging and contributing to the fires. Deforestation by these industries are largely to blame for the out-of-control wildfires that burned for a very long time in the Brazilian Amazon.

Activists are getting ready to fight for the indigenous community and the rainforest.

“We must denounce this political catastrophe that destroys the environment and our future,” Sonia Guajajara, head of Brazil’s main Indigenous umbrella organization, to NBC News.

READ: Under Bolsonaro, The Brazilian Amazon Has Reached Record-Breaking Levels Of Deforestation

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People Have A Lot Of Opinions About The Argentina Episode Of Netflix’s ‘Street Food: Latin America’


People Have A Lot Of Opinions About The Argentina Episode Of Netflix’s ‘Street Food: Latin America’

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Netflix has a new food show out and it has everyone buzzing. “Street Food: Latin America” is bringing everyone the sabor of Latin America to their living room. However, reviews are mixed because of Argentina and the lack of Central American representation.

Netflix has a new show and it is all about Latin American street food.

Some of the best food in the world comes from Latin America. That is just a fact and it isn’t because our families and community come for Latin America. Okay, maybe just a little. The food of Latin America comes with history and stories that have shaped our childhood. For many of us, it is the only thing we have that connects us to the lands our families have left.

The show is highlighting the contributions of women to street food.

“Street Food: Latin America” focuses mainly on the women that are leading the street food cultures in different countries in Latin America. For some of them, it was a chance to bring themselves out of poverty and care for their children. For others, it was a rebellion against the male-dominated culture of cooking in Latin America.

However, some people have some strong opinions about the show and they aren’t good.

There is a lot of attention to native communities in the Latino community culturally right now. The Argentina episode where someone claims that Argentina is more European is rubbing people the wrong way right now. While the native population of Argentina is small, it is still important to highlight and honor native communities who are indigenous to the lands.

The disregard for the indigenous community is upsetting because indigenous Argentinians are fighting for their lives and land.

An A Jazeera report focused on an indigenous community in northern Argentina who were fighting to protect their land. After decades of discrimination and humiliation, members of the Wichi community fought to protect their land from the Argentinian government grabbing it in 2017. Early this year, before Covid, children of the tribe started to die at alarming rates of malnutrition.

Another pain point in the Latino community is the complete disregard of Central America.

Central America includes Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Belize, and Panama. Central America’s exclusion is not sitting right with Netflix users with Central American heritage. Like, how can five whole countries be looked over during a Netflix show about street food in Latin America?

Seems like there is a chance for Netflix to revisit Latin America for more food content.

There are so many countries in Latin America that offer delicious foods to the world. There is more to Latin America than Brazil, Mexico, Peru, Argentina, Colombia, and Bolivia.

READ: This Iconic Mexican Food Won The Twitter Battle To Be Named Latin America’s Best Street Food

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