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Antonio Luciano Tosta, "Quando a Globalização Esbarra na Tradição: Renovação e Resistência nas Músicas de Capoeira"

Friday, March 19, 2010
12:00 AM
1644 SSWB (International Institute)

Antonio Luciano Tosta is an Assistant Professor of Brazilian Literature and Culture at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He has a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature and an MA in Portuguese and Brazilian Studies from Brown University. His essays have appeared in several academic journals and as book chapters in the US, Brazil, and England. He is interested in inter-American comparisons, especially in the representations of national ethnic groups. His manuscript Confluence Narratives in the Literatures of the Americas is currently under review by a university press. He is also the editor of the Luso-American Anthology, forthcoming by Rutgers University Press.Capoeira, an Afro-Brazilian artistic expression often described as a martial art/ dance/ game, has always been one of the marks of the Afro-Brazilian identity worldwide. Nowadays Capoeira is practiced in 164 countries, in all continents, by men and women, children and the elderly, and even by disabled people. Its current global status, however, offers a number of challenges to Capoeira, as an emblem of an Afro-descendant tradition and, especially, of opposition to domination. This presentation will investigate to what extent the lyrics (and music) to the contemporary Capoeira songs are exploring Afro-Brazilian identity and globalization. More specifically, it will identify and compare two different sets of songs, which together, I argue, expose the tension between tradition and modernity that the art experiences at the moment.