By C. Sterling
This article explores how Afro-Brazilians outline their Africanness via Candomblé and Quilombo types, and build paradigms of blackness with affects from US-based views, in the course of the vectors of public rituals, carnival, drama, poetry, and hip hop.
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Additional resources for African Roots, Brazilian Rites: Cultural and National Identity in Brazil
45 In effect, his sense perception, like that of Rodrigues, was manipulated behind the scenes to dismiss all forms of Candomblé except for the Nagô-based model. However, due to his studies of Bantu-derived Candomblés, the discourse of religious participation shifted from the issue of racial inferiority to one of cultural inferiority. In a type of solipsistic defense that can only come out of a racist dialectic, Ramos, also like Rodrigues before him, advocated that with time Afro-Brazilians would acculturate and evolve through processes of education and exposure to other religious forms and repudiate their belief systems (Ramos 1951).
14 A complex system of color classification developed out of the multiracial groupings in the society. A category such as pardo signified a range of color in the mulatto category. Other classifications, such as caboclo, sarará, café com leite, or cor de tônajura,15 were based on the quantifiable and visible signs of indigenous, European, and African bloodlines. Each color category carries specific phenotypic characteristics based on hair texture, eye color, the broadness of the nose, and the fullness of the lips.
Traveling the Roads of the Orisas Through the siré, the ceremonial ritual order, the memory of Africa became institutionalized practice but reconfigured differently as Roger Bastide asserts. Continuity, however, as Mãe Valnizia Pereira points out, is found in the passage of knowledge from one generation 44 AFRICAN ROOTS, BR A ZILIAN RITES to another (Harding, Refugee 147). When the transmittal of the religious knowledge is reconfigured as “traveling theory,” memory serves as a conduit, revealed through the configuration of the orisas—in the names and identifications of each, the existing mythos, the patterns of divination, and the ritual processes encompassed in the belief system.