Course rescues (and renews) the teachings of Mário de Andrade on a mission to document Afro-Brazilian culture – Preta, preto, pretinhos

The mission idealized by Mário de Andrade (1893-1945) in the North and Northeast of Brazil, in 1938, and which is at the origin of the Brazilian mapping of traditional communities, is the subject of a virtual course that Casa Mário de Andrade begins next month . The classes on “Mission of folk research: Afro-Brazilian memory and culture” begin on June 16 and will be given by Alexandre Araujo Bispo, doctor and master in social anthropology at the University of São Paulo.

“Mário de Andrade, who was a black man, was the country’s first civil servant of culture. Since 1937 we lived under the Estado Novo, which lasted until 1945. This regime made Roman apostolic Catholicism the official religion, which made the Afro-Brazilian religions, which were always persecuted, suffer new repression ”, contextualizes Bishop.

“The importance of the mission lies in the fact that for the group that made the trip the candomblé, the catimbó, the creole drum, the mine drum and other cults should be respected because they were part of the Brazilian culture”, says the anthropologist to the blog. “More than 80 years later, when religious intolerance increases alarmingly in Brazil, the mission leaves us a lesson in respect for the difference in belief and worship.”

Mário de Andrade’s project toured the North and Northeast of Brazil (Photo: CCSP Collection)

In four modules, the course addresses the following themes: “Before 1930: Mário de Andrade, travel, knowledge and modern sociability”; “Race and race relations: the biological explanation and the cultural explanation before and after the 1930s”; “New state; Mário de Andrade as public manager; Folkloric Research Mission (1938) ”and“ Actuality: Afro-Brazilian material culture, social movements and repatriation / restitution of collections ”.

“Although we live in a time of greater visibility for black people in Brazilian society, let us not forget that what predominates is vulnerability”, says Bispo. “It is necessary to stop talking about the contribution of the black and indigenous population to the country. No one else can bear to contribute so much to the history of this country, which has been reducing a series of inequalities and is now on the Hunger Map and has 408 thousand deaths by Covid-19. ”

Also from the present of the country, the researcher analyzes the objectives and legacies of the mission conceived by the modernist, when he was director of the Department of Culture of São Paulo, between 1935 and 1938.

“You can’t get to know Brazil without knowing the history of black African, Afro-Brazilian and indigenous populations. In fact, Mário de Andrade’s program for culture and education remains, even today, unfulfilled. Do you know why? Because in Brazil there is vandalism and cultural extermination, or, if we want to use a fashionable term, epistemicide. ”

Classes will be available to enrollees for one month, until July 16, so that the student can follow the course at their own pace.

Course: Folkloric Research Mission: Afro-Brazilian Memory and Culture
Where: Casa Mário de Andrade, through its virtual platforms
When: between 16 June and 16 July
Registrations: until June 15th, here
Registration fee: R$ 70




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