27 years ago, on July 11, 1994, I published my first text in a newspaper. This newspaper was Folha. At the time, there were few black journalists and collaborators in the newsroom. Today, at 100, there is more. Win the newspaper. The reader wins.
For the text published in 1994, I received my first payment for a job. With the money, I bought good pants and a T-shirt, a new shoelace for my warrior sneakers, had dinner in a chic place, a copy of Abdias Nascimento’s “O Quilombismo”, frames for the paper letters I exchanged with Kurt Cobain in 1993, a bottle of whiskey and a new bed for the room he rented in a pension. I keep the newspaper to this day.
And a newspaper keeps a country. The country kept in Folha de São Paulo is, today, due to the diversity of its team, it is polyphonic. While there is, for example, a blog dedicated to the thinking of black people, there are writers who do not even believe in the concept of race.
Right versus left, racism versus reverse racism, center versus peripheries. What some call polarization, others call exposure of a polarization that has always existed.
Brazil is a country that came out of the closet. Folha de São Paulo followed. It did what every media outlet should do. He stayed with the present. He let the past pass.
I miss the past. Paper newspapers reigned in our daily lives, and few pleasures could compare to feeling the weight of the thick Sunday edition in our hands.
Newspaper sheets were scattered around the house, and in the subscribers’ house daily editions accumulated and got confused.
In the streets there were used sheets of newspaper on the sidewalks. Today, in the garbage there are no more sheets of newspaper.
Our garbage is full of plastic.
And that says a lot about the plastic life we live today. Or the plastic life you live when a society moves away from paper newspapers.
They say that one of the greatest human tragedies is the fact that our intellect reaches the height of maturity when our aging body can no longer enjoy it.
Different, out of the closet, polyphonic, Folha resists, at 100 years of age, the plasticization of the world.
The sheet of paper.
And the role of Folha.