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Popular Culture, Power Relations and Urban Discipline: The Festival of the Holy Spirit in Nineteenth-Century Rio de Janeiro

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Article of journalAbreu, Martha  Popular Culture, Power Relations and Urban Discipline: The Festival of the Holy Spirit in Nineteenth-Century Rio de Janeiro. [Trad. Cultura Popular, Las Relaciones del Poder y la Disciplina Urbana: El Festival del Espíritu Santo de Río de Janeiro en el Siglo XIX ] Bulletin of Latin American Research, 2005 vol. 24 no. 2 p. 167-180. Keywords:
South America
Brazil
Culture | History

Abstract:

The Festival of the Holy Spirit was considered the most important religious celebration in nineteenth-century Rio de Janeiro. I discuss the popular practices of music, dance and theatre during the festival. By merging European waltz and the African batuque, the heterogeneous public re-created and re-invented a number of new genres that are at the roots of twentieth-century Brazilian popular music. The festival of the Holy Spirit allows an examination of elite strategies and municipal policies regarding popular culture. In this respect, it is remarkable how much political use the Brazilian Empire made of the festival of the Holy Spirit and how its revellers fought for their celebration.

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