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Cover The Army is in the streets. It's dengue.

xx With the help of a providential April drought, Rio de Janeiro seems to have licked its worst dengue epidemic on record, which killed at least 56 people. The last week of April the Health Ministry declared the outbreak "under control," happy to announce that nationwide there were reported less than 6,000 new cases of dengue in the first two weeks of April, compared to 60,000 cases in March and another 100,000 in February. Brazil has already gone before through the same scare and the same assurances that "everything's fine now." In the '50s and then in the '70s, Brazilians were led to believe that dengue had been eliminated. But, in 1998, the plague was back with a vengeance, registering 530,000 cases across the country. In 2000 and 2001, there were again more than 200,000 cases nationwide. Dengue is transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which lays eggs in clean standing water. By and large dengue fever is not fatal, but causes fatigue, lack of appetite, and severe joint pains and headaches that can last for a week. To combat the outbreak and educate the population, tens of thousands of soldiers, health workers and volunteers combed some of Brazil's biggest cities in search of stagnant water in potholes, plant trays and old tires. It's not time to go back to a false sense of security. As infectologist Celso FerreiraRamos Filho remarked, "When authorities claim that the dengue fever epidemic is about to finish by April, they are deceiving the population. The epidemic will break out again once the temperature gets higher, because there is no systematic control of mosquitoes and the living conditions are bad." RAI

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49 Cultural Pulse 51 Classifieds 52 That's Brazilian

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Tribute Drum's SiInt ALE SSANDRA DALE VI It was a fitting dea:h for one of Brazil's most celebrated bohemians and womanizers. Sambista Oswald째 Sargentelli, 78, had to be taken in a rush to the hospital Barra D' Or in Rio's west side, April 12, a Friday night, while taping a scene in front of Dona Jura's Bar, a setting of 0 Clone (The Clone), Brazil's most popular soap opera at the moment. Dona Jura, interpreted by actress Solange Couto, pay homage to the man who gave her the first chance in show biz when she was 17. The reencounter with the nntlata (mulatto girl) whom he made famous was too much for his feeble heart. Sargentelli died Saturday morning from an acute myocardial infarction, after doctors triedto implant a pacemaker. The heart was giving him trouble for some time. In 1998 he had three bypasses implantec. At that time he commented in his musical-irreverent style: "The bass drum is failing." But he did not slow down. In the 70s, the promoter who used to call himself mulatologo (mulattologist) had up to 40 muiatas working for him. Also known as Voz do TrovAo (Voice of Thunder), Sargentelli made a career in radio and TV. interviewing personalities. Between 1957 and 1964, he hosted the show 0 Preto no Branco (Black on White) at extinct TV Tupi. He didn't appear on stage. The spectators could only see the interviewee and hear the presenter's booming voice. The questions were often polemical or embarrassing for the guest. Another famous show he hosted was Advogado do Diabo (The Devil's Attorney). At the time of his death, Sargentelli, also known as Sargent째 (Sergeant), was stir hosting A Verdade de... (The Truth of...), a late-night show at Rede Brasil TV in which he interviewed personalities. Born in Lapa, a Rio neighborhood famous for its bohemian mores, Sargentelli was rai.;ed by his mother, Maria Amelia Sargentelli. The father, Leopoldo de Azetedo Babo. abandoned his family when Oswald was s- till an infant and never even give him his name. Sargentelli would only meet his famous composer uncle Lamartine Babo, in 1948, when he landed a job as radio announcer at Radio Clube do Brasil. Sargentelli has been single since 1978 when he left his third wife, Almary, after a 13-year ma-riage. As for the number of children he fathered he was never quiet sure. "Inside the house," he


told an interviewer from Genie magazine, "I had seven. But I have 21 children spread around." His first marriage, to Lucia, lasted eight years; the second, to Vera, resisted 11. His house was always full of people. He used to say that he hated to be alone. Some days, up to 11 people would sleep in his one-bedroom apartment in Copacabana. During a visit of a reporter in 1999 there were six friends living there: singer Miguel Franca, mulatus Aline Barret째 and Renata Santana and three more people. Memorias de um Sargent() de Mu/alas (Memories of Sergeant of Mulatto Girls), written by Fernando Costa and released in 1999, tells about littleknown facts on his life, like the times he went to jail durinathe mil itary regime for speaking his mind as a political reporter at TV Rio. The military persecution that in 1964 forbade him from working as a journalist was decisive to his new vocation of mulatologo. His first show of mu/alas happened in 1969 in Copacabana's 0 Samba째. The next year, he opened Sucata and then, in 1973, Oba Oba, with a show that would tour the whole world in the 70s and 80s. He made a big splash presenting Sargentel I i e as Mu/alas Que Nan Estdo no 11,1apa (Sargentelli and the Out-of-this-world Mulatas). This year he was working on plans to open a new nightclub in the same place Sucata once was. In 1985, the Commission forthe Valorization and Political Integration of the Black from Rio Grande do Sul accused him of racism and of exploiting black women. The charges were later dropped, however. Some have credited him with the creation of words that have entered the Brazilian entertainment world like telecoteco, ziriguklum and borogodo. In an interview with Rio Grande do Sul daily newspaper Zero I-lora, in February, he explained how these expressions came to light, "I didn't invent anything, just spread them. Time and again, radio announcers created these terms. Ziriguidum, for example. I took it from Monsueto Menezes and Ary Barroso always said telecoteco. I've also incorporated popular expressions. Balacobaco was the way to say "let's go to a ball." Borogoda, on the other hand, meant that someone was pretty. These words show the African influence in Brazil. In the same interview, Sargentelli talked about his lifelong love for the mulata. "No one convinces me that white


Indians Cleaning the Area

TV beauties know more about samba than a mulata. And I'm blond with blue eyes. I adore w hite women, even those American ones with their amazing mammaries. but the mulata has no match when she sambas. She kills." Recently, Sargentelli interviewed himself in his Rede Brazil TV show. "Do your consider yourself generous?." he asked. And answered: "1 I passed the limit of generosity, I'm sorry Now I'm in the diminutive phase: I'm the little old man, the little fluff,' guy, the little sergeant. I pay neither the bus fare nor the restaurant. Ah Christ in Heavens, how good it's to At almost 80, are you still dealing with mulutas? I don't deal anymore because I reached my limit. today I only think about them. Ah, how good it is to think. Wheredid you getso many pretty women? Brazil is a factory ofpietty women. Did you romance Dercy Goncalves (a vaudeville and TV comedian)? Of course! I saw her body going upstairs and became hallucinated. I'm from the time when boys would become hallucinated by the sight of a girl going upstairs. In which measure is God part of your life? God is my friend. If the heavenly father is Brazilian, He likes samba. „ pop music and mulata. That's the way he defined the women he loved the most: "Alulatas have thin waist, thick thighs, naughty little-girl face, good teeth, wide laugh, and very good smell; they shake and jiggle, making everyone's mouth water."


A task force made up of Federal Police agents, Army soldiers, Funai and lbama officials, and attorneys of the Brazilian Department ofJust ice supported by various indigenous entities launched an operation to remove almost 3,000 miners from the land of the Cinta Larga indigenous people, which they invaded late in 1999 to mine for diamonds in it. The ask force will implement a more permanent plan to support this people. This is the fourth time in 10 years that federal authorities launch an operation to remove invaders from the land of the Cinta Larga, a people of Monde linguistic origin whose population was reduced from 650 people in 1993 to less than 400 today. The area, located in the south tip of the state of Rondonia and northwest of the state of Mato Grosso, has large reserves of diamonds. The Federal Police estimates that gems amounting to 50 million dollars were smuggled from the region to Belgium last year. The presence of miners in the area, in addition to the also illegal activities of woodcutters, jeopardizes the group's social fabric. Many indigenous families stopped fishing and hunting to associate with the invaders in exchange for money. Some indigenous people are charging up to R$ 10,000 (US$ 4,290) to allow machines to be brought to the area. And there are reports that Funai and lbama employees are also involved in the illegal exploitation and trade of diamonds. The violence prevailing among the miners themselves is another consequence of their illegal exploitation activities. According to the police, about 40 men were murdered in the re4,, gion in recent months. Alcoholism, drugs, prostitution malnutrition, and social disaggregation are the more visible harms caused by the actions of miners and woodcutters in the lands of the Cinta Larga and also in the territories of the Zoro. Gaviao, and Surui in the states of Rondonia and Mato Grosso. Referring to the brutal murder of Carlito Kaban Cinta Larga in Aripuana (state of Mato Grosso) on the night of December 19, Dal Poz compared the present situation to the one prevailing in 1963, when gunmen hired by rubber plantation owners Arruda and Junqueira machine-gunned a Cinta Larga village located on the banks of the Aripuana river in an episode that became known in history as the "Parallel 11 Massacre." Cimi 's executive secretary, Egon Heck, compares the situation ofthe Cinta Larga to the one faced by the Yanomami in the mid 1980s when their lands in Roraima were invaded by thousands of miners who left a trail of violence and epidemics that killed at least 1,500 indigenous = people. The eviction operation will be over in a few weeks, but lndianists are now mostly concerned about what should be done to prevent the indigenous land from being invaded again and about how to ensure a stable situation for the Cinta Larga to recover their lifestyle and dignity Anthropologist Joao Dal Poz reported that businessmen are identifyin new areas to exploit timber in the land beginning in May, after the rainy season.

Hum Rights four detainees crammec into cells built to hold 4, windowless cells from whicni prismers are allowed out only one hour every 15 days. 100C percent overcrowding, suspected torturers acting with impunity for more han 30 years... Although the horrors scribed above sound as if they belong to a medieval work of tic- fj ion, they are the reality of the daily routine of terrible conditions, chronic overcrowding, torture and corruption suffered by prisoners and witnessed by Amnesty International in a recent visit to two _ police stations in Belo I lorizonte, Minas Gerais state. Against the backdrop of increasing pubic deands for a tougher stance against violent crime, and with recent polls showing mounting support far the reintroduction of the death penalty among other measures, Amnesty International is today drawing public attention to the appalling human rights abuses ani overcrowding that have long gone unchecked in tw D of Belo Honzonte's busiest police stations. An Amnesty International delegation visited the, Delegacia de TOxicos ( Div isao de TOxicos 'Entorpecentes—Controlled Substances police station) and the Delegacia de Roubos e Furtos ( de Crimes Contra o PatrimOnio--Robbery and Theft poi staion) in October 2001 and found concitions ofektreme overcrowding and squalor, lack of medical at entioa and evidence of corruption among the guards, who extort money from desperate inmates in exchange for basic commodities—including food and rnedicir es— and transfers. "Despite repeated denunciations by national and international human rights organizations and the "Jnitee Nations Special Rapporteur Against Tenure, çr soners these police stations continue to endure subhun conditions—what could almost be descri aed as a living death—in which they are denied their nost basic humanity," Amnesty International said. ; "What is even more disturbing, deta,inees Ld of torture sessions carried out with neatings and electric shocks, and of windowless punishmern cells where they are taken after the torture anc left naked in solitary confinement for a number of days, without food," the delegates said, adding that these are not isolated cases, as reports of overcrowding and torture are abundant for police stations right across Brazil. The delegation was alarmed to discover that a long-standing staff member of the Delegacia de Furtos e Roubos is known to have been


involved in episxle oftorture that took place there as long ago as 1969, and to hear that torture methods used in the 1[960s are still in use there today. i "This is just oneinore example of how the Brazilian authorities' chronic failure to investigate the widespread reports of torture and ill-treatment in prisons and police stations, and to punish those reF sponsible, continues to feed the cycle of impunity and abuse," Amnesty International delegates said. "The situation in these two police stations is symptomatic of the structural problems ofthe Brazilian criminal justice system, which is coming under increasing strain w the authorities respond to rising crime rates and public pressure by attempting quick fix solutions," the delegates continued. In Novembet 2001, following mounting international criticism, the Brazilian government launched a nationwide campaign to comipat torture. Four months into the campaign, however, -_here are concerns that man} of the measures adopted fail to address the root causes of torture and the impunity enjoy ec by perpetrators. "The campaign has been undermined by poor funding and lack of a coordinated strategy, and has had very little impact on the lives of the thousands of prisoners who endure torture anc ill-treatment throughout Brazil," 'testy International said. "What is needed is urgent action on the part of state and federal authoritie to improve conditions of detention, stop the violence-and abuse by police and prison staff— including through providing them with adequate resources and training—and cub the use of excessively punitive sentencing which contributes to extreme overcrowding such as we witnessed in Belo Horizonte." "The state and federal authorities in Brazil have consiste3tly failed to provide structured and effective long term strategies for reforming public security. This has resulted in the sacrifice ofthe human rights of a substantial percentage of the Brazilian population to violent, repressive, and co-rupt policing icr etLods. At best, these methods have proved ineffective in tackling crime; at worst they have fuelled the spiral af crime and violence that is currently posing a major threat to social stability in the country," Amnesty International concluded. This material was supplied by the International Secretariat of Amnesty International. The above-mentioned report is • available in their web page at recent/AMR190032002


Children Street Sweet Street A recent study done by Cespi (Coordenacao de Estudos e Pesquisas sobre a Infancia—Coordination of Studies and Research Concerning Childhood) of the University of Santa Ursula, in Rio de Janeiro, was released and gives a current profile of an estimated 1,200 kids who live on the streets in Rio. The study followed 67 such youngsters from October, 2001 to January of this year. One of the questions asked was what the kids found to be good about living on the streets. Words such as food, fun, money and freedom appeared in 50 percent of the responses to the question. Some of the boys responded further that having fun to them would be to perform acts of violence or using drugs; but they also said that living on the streets was the "wrong road" or it is a "vice" that is hard to let go of. But a significant number of kids, when asked what is good about the streets, said "nothing." Among the 43 kids who answered the question. what is the worst thing about the street. 26 said "violence." 8 said "the police," 7 said "prejudices against them," 6 said "hunger," and 6 said "drugs." Of the thirty who were asked if they have ever suffered violence, all responded in the affirmative. Fifteen were victims ofpolice violence, 3 victims of security guard violence. and 6 suffered violence from other kids. Many ofthe kids said that one of their worst nightmares would be to suffer the fate of"Galdino the Indian." (Galdino was an indigenous man who in 1997 was set on fire by a group of upper middle class youths who thought he was a street person.) The research team, coordinated by sociologist Irene Rizzini, director of Cespi, didn't go through the streets count the number of street kids in Rio, but their objective rather was to hear what thct kids thought of themselves, society, their fears, plans, and dreams. The goal of the study is to help establish new public policies for this marginalized population. The researchers found that the majority of the kids want what they never had: work, a home, a family. or a place to study. The study reveals that this portion of the population is fluid—young people who enter and leave the city in diverse groups. The necessity to survive and to have recreation are factors which contribute to this fluidity. The beach especially attracts groups.


But for the majority, the kids prefer to circulate throughout the city alonerorin small groups. It is only at night that they form large groups—it is a way of defending themselves from "evil" that lurks. But this is not to say that they come and go at will. There are certain restrictions in their wanderings, especially from the drug traffickers. Even if they don't have a direct connection with organized crime factions, they willoften wear signs to identify themselves with a group. Also the study reveals that the so-called "freedom of the streets" is somethat illusory. According to testimonies, adults (sometimes even the parents) act as "dominators" and "protectors" of the groups, especially as the group is involved in illicit activities such as drug trafficking or begging at stop lights. But the kids speak very little about the exploiters, who act like characters out of aCharles Dickens novel. The estimated 1,200 street kids is not many more than the number 10 years ago, nearly 900. In absolute numbers, it may seem to be a relatively small problem in a metropolis with over 5 million inhabitants. Butaccording to the researchers, boys and girls are living on the streets at much younger ages than ever before, some beginning at seven years ofage. And survival is more difficult because of the intense increase o violence. "The scenario has change where these young people live, comments Rizzini. According to the sociologist, when adolescents and children affirm that between living at home and living on the streets, they choose the streets, they are not saying that the street is a great place to be. "Poverty is on the rise, and there are cases where the home can be worse than the streets. Domestic violence and misery have pushed these kids out of their homes." Rizzini concludes. "With this study as a base, we can see that it is necessary to create mechanisms that build up bases of support for these children in their communities and in their families. We need to offer daycare, options for sports, recreation, culture, health programs and work programs for the families." This material was supplied by SERV Servico Brasileiro de Justica e Paz). You can get more information on their homepage at www.oneworld.netlsejup/


Brazil is living in a situation of war, a Social War, according to United Nations special advisor Jean Ziegler. "It's as if France, Germany and Somalia were living in the same country!" Ziegler continued. -And while police are important for security, they are not the solution to the problems ofhunger, lack ofhealth care, lack ofschools and lack of citizenship." In a country with such a striking disparity between rich and poor, Ziegler comments, "the temptation to steal is understandable when one has absolutely nothing." Despite the fact that one Brazilian authority, cal led this declaration irresponsible and ridiculous, the facts are hard to dispute. According to UN guidelines, a country with over 25,000 assassinations per year is considered in a state of war, and last year, according to the Ministry of Justice, Brazil registered well over 40,000 assassinations. In the metropolitan area of Sao Paulo, whose population is estimated between 17 and 20 million, residents are afraid to go out at night. The number of kidnappings has increased 400 percent. From 1985 to 1997, homicides have increased 76 percent, unemployment has risen 18.6 percent and the number of people living in precarious or totally inadequate housing (or the streets) has grown 50 percent. Three neighborhood health posts in the city of S5o ent weeks atte- receiving Paulo closed their doQr ing the clinics. Even withanonymous phone calls o out the alarming numbdassassmations. this data indicates at minimum, a social crisis, ifnot the "social war" that Ziegler describes. The "Map of Inclusion/Exclusion" of the city of Sao Paulo, a comprehensive study collecting information from governmental and university sources addressing social inclusion and exclusion, violence, health, education, housing, children and adolescents, hunger work, unemployment and the informal economy, speaks to the epidemic of violence. "Violence is not only an effect, but also a cause of the increase in tension and inequality in the city. The population lives in constant fear, and the tension caused by the police only augments this fear." Almost one-third ofall residents in the city of sao Paulo now believe that violence is the greatest problem in the country' today. This public perception of violence has a strong psychological impact on the population. Public space, in other words, is identified more and more with violence, danger and abandonment. Exacerbating the dramatic increase in violence is a continued complete lack of confidence in public security and government officials. A recent study by the newspaper Folha of Sao Paulo re-


vealed that 59 percent of the residents of this city of SA° Paulo lave more fear than trust in the police and security forces Controlling violence and restoring a sense ofpublic security is practically impossible when daily headlines show the narcotics police (DeNarc) commandeering the drug traffic in a part of the city known as "Crack-land" (so called for the quantity of crack cocaine that passes through this area) or the military police being indicted for protecting drug lords and "helping- identify potential victims to kidnap. The governor himselfpublicly declared, "there are only two places for criminals—jail or the grave," and while the public security budget (which includes the police forces) has inixeased 107 percent, violence, if anything, has also increased. In the month of January, the police in Sdo Paulo officia,ly kilied 84 people—as if the words of the governor freed them to shoot more indiscriminately. Seeing as the budget continues to skyrocket, the violence only increases, one questions if anyone is thinking beyond traditional means. It is way past time to think creatively. Human beings have the capacity to split atoms, write operas, sculpt a "David," and yet, in the face of increasing violence, the onlyresponse is to build more jails. In business, when one sees that her/his product has a 3040 percent success rate, one closes the factory. And yet, society not only accepts this rate from the prison industry and police fo-ces, it offers more money to produce more of the same product. Violence is neither a necessary evil nor an inevitable part of urban life. However, as long as the principal solution is to pour more money into what already does not work, the system will continue to do no more than band-aid an already desperate situation. Alternatives to prison sentencing like probation and community service must be utilized and with the money not spent on housing and controlling that inmate, budgets for daycare, education, health aaid job training can be increased. Lite-acy courses, secondary education and job skills tra ningmust be a part of every sentenced inmate's options for a chance at a different life after release. Laws against torture, domestic violence and political impunity must be applied. As a model of citizenship, the police forces, both military and c vil, must be held accountable and corruption and violence within the police forces must be eradicated. Clearly, more training, more ongoing support and continuing education are a means to this end. Only then, will they earn the trust of the general population. Finally, making the education and formation of today's children a first priority will open the possibility of a different future for them... of a different future for all of society. Heidi Cerneka works with female prisoners in the city of Sao Paulo. This material was supplied by SEJUP (Servico Brasileiro de Justica e Paz, which is online at http:// rld.not/sej u p/ .on BRAZZIL - APRIL 2002

fiart., .


High lever

Sao Paulo entra ern clima de dengue: hoje e o 'Dia D'

Shanty towns and poor neighborhoods were more affected by the dengue outbreak. But in Rio the fever hit even the wealthy and celebrities. Some of them have been sharing their "feverish" experience with the public in a special section called "I Have Dengue" in Rio's 0 Globo newspaper. CAROLINA BERARD

Auditoria apura desvio de verbas do dengue no Rio




Aedes aegypti is not a soap opera character, but it has become the newest villain on the Brazilian public health stage. Although this mosquito that carries dengue was believed to be eradicated from the country years ago, the current outbreak shows that the battle against dengue fever is far from over. The state of Rio de Janeiro has been the most badly hit-137,712 cases were reported by April 4th, 49 resulted in death. Other states also demonstrate a high number of cases, and the total amount of cities struck by the dengue fever mosquito is believed to be about 3,600. The current outbreak is considered to be one of the worst ever, and in Rio, it is the worst since 1991. Dengue is an old problem in Brazil. It was believed to be eliminated in the 1950s and the 1970s, but, in 1998, the country had its worst outbreak: 530,000 cases registered. In 1999 and 2000, the numbers were much lower (210,000 and 240,000 cases, respectively) but the 'first quarter of 2002 seemed to indicate that dengue was stronger than ever. A special episode of this soap opera took place when federal, state and local authorities and institutions tried to avoid responsibility for the outbreak. The population and the media astonishingly watched what could be called "a political show," in which actors downplayed their role in leading to such a chaotic situation. Besides dealing with such political conflicts, politicians tripped over themselves taking measures to restrain the potentially fatal disease. The battle against Aedes aegypti has been very much hampered both by the lack of organ ized actions on the part of government and institutions and by the aforementioned political game, since it involves two pre-candidates in next October's presidential elections: Jose Serra, who ran the Ministry of Health until he stepped down on February 20th (so that he can run in this year's elections), and Anthony Garotinho, ex- governor of the state of Rio de Janeiro who also just stepped down. Mr. Serra left the Ministry at the very moment when concern about dengue fever peaked. Criticisms, questions and public opinion polls were inevitable. Serra's enemies even called him "candidate for the Presidengue." "It is only natural that society's eyes are turned to problems. However, there cannot be electoral exploitation as a result," Serra responded in an interview with Veja magazine in February. A recent Institute MCI poll showed that the population did not consider Mr. Serra responsible for the outbreak. Despite what the apparent buck-passing might suggest, the federal government has invested in this area, claims Mauro Costa, president of FUNASA (Fundaclo Nacional de Sailde—National Health Foundation). According to FUNASA data, the government has increasingly invested in the battle against the mosquito. Since 1996,2.9 billion reais (about US$ 1.26 billion) were allocated to actions to control dengue and authorities now expect to invest an additional 607 billion reais(US$ 264.88 billion) until the end of2002. Of course, these figures were ignored as presidential candidates traded barbs. Mr. Costa also criticized the exploitation of the outbreak for political purposes, explaining "by saying the state [of Rio de Janeiro] is not responsible for the dengue fever outbreak, Mr. Garotinho transformed the issue in a political question. But dengue fever is not a political question, it is a technical one and it involves many elements:

Every cloud has a silver lining. Following th Brazilian tradition of seeing problems with a sense of optimism, some merchants have not been that angry with 4edes aegypti, Although concerned about the national health situation, they might even be satisfied — in a very discrete way,obviously —with the profit the mosquito has provided Repellents, insecticides and screens have had a boom in sales. Merchants from Rio say that the number of requests for such products have been so high that inflation in theseetorwashleyitable. When it comes to fighting Aedes elegypti, however, consumers do not seem concerned about the prices. In Rio, andiroba candles are in greater demand than any girl from Ipanema. Unlike its rivals, that are made ofchemical elements, the andiroba candles do not cause side-effects on personal health and the environment. As a result, multiplied greatly. People also buy citronella candles, but it has many disadvantages. according to and irobla andles producers. "Citronellatuse is limited, since it has been observed that the Aroma attracts bees who sting worse than iricis4uiree$ and cause fatal allergies. Its mosquito-repellent efficiency is only 30 percent, against the 100 pert ieetiofandiroba candles. Citronella works better ,against flies. A nd iroba acts against all bloodsuckingmosquitoes." they pro ocatively advertise in theirwebsite http. It does not matter what problem the country faces. The war among merchants and the basic logic of supply and demand will always be,pr


It was notoosnsly the ernment and institutions that es and expenses withthe w eepidemic. eksaynss The population—specially opulati merchants---have bitten b the loss. "Almost half Y employees could not come t ork for at least one Alexandre n cunliTnehLudpao°1sbne ol e om , fes,' m roc:Oag ' ‘n° vn: ts8sfedc auarceiandle tthoi " eAarnu scetchoera A or ie)notguee,a:df same more clients due some article gerude o ding to published wwss com br at the high pnel rii4bier of sick ru1t in busing productsn andrnea,:dip ihtoeo: ueme ,, feeb ei asn err‘ es‘r‘o would . rifehfreicPt, tbe20:0fh t ersectors m tivwew y. "A Iso, 1 bel ieve thatabont rhcsues % teoo niat.rinon ofsesco.:1.1 ill contract dengue f near . Data from e Shopping °n Centers' , in Rio. sh. ow that at leastev30 percent n the tot thee disease mPloYees stay home



education, sanitation, etc." In fact, these other elements contributed to the spread of dengue throughout the country. The disease is especially likely to occur in houses, mainly in poor neighborhoods where stagnant pools of water allow Aedes aegypti to breed. Shanty towns and poor neighborhoods were certainly more affected because of the poor sanitation system. But in Rio the fever hit even the wealthy and celebrities—some of them appear and share their "feverish" experience with the public in a special column called "I Have Dengue" in Rio's 0 Globo newspaper. The combination of causes of dengue—hot weather, a rainy season, poor sanitation, lack of continuous policies against mosquitoes throughout the year and of participation of the population— made many cities, especially Rio, a breeding ground for a possible epidemic. This is why it is widely agreed that there is no acceptable excuse for the failure of the government and the population to act decisively. Researcher Luiz Hildebrando Pereira da Silva, however, sees a positive point amid the problem: "maybe this will show how important it is to develop preventative measures to avoid mosquitoes-carrying diseases in the future.' Until abetter future arrives, FUNASA, the media and local governments have been promoting campaigns to encourage citizens to participate in the eradication of the mosquito's breeding places. Fortunately, they have been reasonably successful and figures show a reduction in the number ofcases. In Rio de Janeiro, for example, according to the city's department ofpublic health, the number of cases registered in March was 20,370, whereas there were 25,550 and 23,078 in February and January respectively. The number of cases is expected to continue to decline both because ofthe measures being taken and the end of the rainy season. This, by the way, has been a sticking point between authorities and researchers. "When authorities claim that the dengue fever epidemic is about to finish by April, they are deceiving the population. The epidemic will break out again once the temperature gets higher, because there is no systematic control of mosquitoes and the living conditions are bad. Dengue fever is not likely to be won," says infectologist Celso Ferreira Ramos Filho. FUNASA, however, does not even consider the outbreak an "epidemic." "Brazil is not having an epidemic," says FUNASA. "The high number of cases is mostly concentrated in the state of Rio de Janeiro. If we see statistics that do not include Rio, we will see that Brazil had a 7 percent reduction in the numberof cases in January comparing to the same period in 2001.In other states, such as Amazonia and Acre, the effort put into this battle was so successful that dengue fever was BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

practically won over." There are many projects and plan that are being implemented throughou the country that help to explain the reduc tion shown by figures. In Rio, voluntee trained by FUNASA have been promot ing "the D Day," both in shantytown and good neighborhoods, by cleanin about 500 houses, streets and abandone areas. In the state of Pernambuco, wher the number of cases increased this ye there were also efforts to inform the popu lation about the disease, clean neighbo hoods and fumigate mosquitoes-infeste areas. The same has been done in SA Sebastilto —located on the outskirts Brasilia — the most badly hit city of th Federal District, and in many otherplac of the country. In Ceilandia, another ci ofthe Federal District, there are progr in public schools to inform children a teenagers through lectures, videos other activities. Besides these preventative measure FUNASA has also been spraying inse ticides against the mosquito and its 1 vae. According to Mr. Costa, they ha e been using two types: 1) a larvicide, whit h is environmentally-friendly and effecti e for 60 days; 2) fumigation with a mixtu e of soy oil and insecticide, which is on y used where there are many adult mosq toes. The larvicides are applied to pe rated screens, water reservoirs or in plac s where stagnant water cannot be el* nated. Fumigation, used to kill adultAe aegypti mosquitoes, is considered extreme measure that should only be tak n when the preventative actions have fail d or have not existed. Mr. Ramos critici es this practice saying "it is not effective in the long run, because it does not kill te larvae. Also, it is not environmentallyfriendly, since it applies insecticide jn side houses and in the environment itself." Reduction of the number of cases registered, however, will never meap a definite solution, since it is impossibl to completely eradicate Aedes aegypti, cording to some researchers, as Ion there are areas with poor sanitation s tem and little permanent (not limite periods of outbreak) participation of ciety. Mr. da Silva says that there re many mosquitoes in Florida, for exam le, but epidemics are prevented by havjing an effective sanitation system. The isease is also hard to eliminate comple ely because there is no vaccine against it. "There are four types of dengue feller,

and a vaccine against one of them would not be effective to the others," explains Anthony Erico GuimarAes, a doctor in Parasitology. Since there is no vaccine, Brazil — as well as other places which have problems fighting dengue fever, such as Hawaii, Vietnam, Thailand, India, the Philippines, Colombia, Peru, Mexico, and Pakistan— has to develop a very organized plan and follow it strictly. According to researchers, this plan has to include: a) permanent action to fight the mosquito and its breeding places (which has not yet happened); b) permanent campaign to inform citizens how they change some of their habits, such as by not leaving stagnant water in flower pots, discarded bottles or abandoned tires. ,According to Mr. Costa, changing (bad) habits would be highly effective; c) investment in infrastructure to treat the ill, since proper treatment could have avoided many ofthe deaths of those who contracted Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever, the most dangerous form of the disease. It is fatal, but, according to Mr. Costa and researchers in general, death can be avoided through proper treatment. (see belowfor further information about DHF); d) investment in sanitation in poor neighborhoods since they can be breeding grounds in which the female Aedes aegypti mosquitoes lays their eggs; e) the training of medical and support staff to diagnose and treat dengue related problems; 1) better control of the use of the funds destined to the subject. Such measures will only be the first step towards controlling the disease. The future of dengue fever in Brazil is still to be determined by how governments, institutions, and society face it. The end of this soap opera is still unwritten, but Brazilians, as with any othernational soap opera, eagerly await the next episodes. The Disease Dengue fever is an acute viral infection spread through the bite of female Aedes aegypti mosquitoes infected with the dengue fever virus. The virus belongs to the genus Flavivirus and has four serotypes: DEN-I, DEN-2, DEN-3 and DEN-4. Until recently, only the three first were known to exist in Brazil, but Anthony Erico Guimarles, a doctor in Parasitology, affirmed in an interview: "a fourth serotype has been registered in Brazil, but only in Amazonia." The serotypes are closely related and cause the same symptoms, but they are antigenically distinct. Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF) is the most serious form of the disease and it may cause blood clotting problems, resulting in bleeding and extremely low blood pressure. Due to the danger it represents—in Brazil many deaths were 13

caused by DHF—Martinho Goncalves da tosta, director of a hospital in Brasilia, the capital ofBrazil, considered Naldina Rodrigues, one ofthe ill patients the hospital assisted, a very lucky person. Ms. Rodrigues had the first symptoms of dengue fever and, thinking it was just a cold, took some aspirin, which is forbidden in these cases because it impairs blood clotting. After the intense treatment, she survived the DHF and was told by the director of the hospital: "You won the lottery! You had Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever and survived!"

The symptoms of dengue include high fever that may last from 5 to 7 days, intense headache, joint and muscle pain, nausea, vomiting and a rash. The symptoms usually occur within 5 to 6 days after the person has been bitten ............................u...... by the mosquito. Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever, these symptoms, is characterized by bleed•• besides ing.

The light Side Brazilians are often known for their sense of humor. If you have ever been to Brazil, you probably know Brazilians joke about even the most serious subject or problem the country (or other countries) is going through. It is no different with dengue. A popular text circulated in the Internet as being a manual from the Health Ministry to answeLthe most common questions about the disease. • •• Stupid Answers to Common (or sometimes equally • stupid) Questions About Dengue Fever • • Does every Aedes aegypti mosquito carry dengue? • • There is no reason to panic. Not all Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are • infected with the virus. Only those who bite you. • • When taking a bath, my belly button gets full of water. Since the • •• mosquitoes lay their eggs in clean water, is my belly button a potential • larval breeding place? • Yes. The best you can do is stopping washing your belly button, so •• that the water in it is always dirty. • • No matter what I do, there are always mosquitoes in my house. What should I do to sleep safely? • Put some of your blood into a bowl. Thus, instead of biting you, • Aedes aegypti will feed on the blood in the bowl, saving time and work. • •▪ A spider ate one Aedes aegypti mosquito in my bedroom. Is the • spider infected now? • Yes. Call the authorities so that they can kill the spider, since it is • • likely to attack you. Do not try to kill it yourself, because the denguecarrying spider becomes more dangerous and may dominate you, by s putting you and your whole family in its web. •• The battle against dengue fever seems inefficient. Should I blame • the government? • No. You should blame yourself, since you chose the current govern• ▪ ment. Good luck in the next elections, in case you survive this epidemic... • • •••••••••••

Treatment It is very important to provide the population with a high level structure to assist the ill, since if thereare no complications with the patient, recovery is likely to occur within I to 2 weeks. As for Dengue Haemorrhagic Fever, the treatment is more complex and includes hospital care with intravenous fluids. This is why a permanent preparedness of the health system, especially the public one, is a paramount measure to be taken in Brazil. Vaccine Since the four serotypes of the dengue fever virus are distinct, vaccine development is difficult because protection against one of these serotypes would not be effective against the others, and, even worse, it might actually increase the risk ofmore serious disease, according to researchers. Tips for Travellers Dengue fever usually occurs in tropical regions, so, if you are planning to visit Brazil or any other trop ical country in the near future, make sure you include in your baggage some useful things other than a swimming suit, cameras and suntan lotion. There are some important measures you might want to take in order to avoid the so-feared Aedes aegypti. Use mosquito repellents; Use aerosol insecticides indoors; If possible, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants; Do not leave water in flower pots, discarded bottles or abandoned tires. Mosquitoes thrive in urban areas and lay their eggs in clean water. If you suspect you contracted dengue fever, DO NOT take aspirin, because it can impair blood clotting. After getting back to your country, tell your doctor what countries you have visited. This will help him or her diagnose dengue fever, since it is often mistaken with typhoid, malaria, influenza, measles or scarlet fever.

Carolina Berard is a translator in Brazil. She worked as a translator and journalist for the portal MultARTE Brazilian Culture ( and has translated texts on various subjects ranging from economic integration to popular culture in Brazil. She is currently doing freelance translations and articles for several publications. Her emails: carolinaberardAhotmail or BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002









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WONDER BRAZIL I love Brazzil and the way it sees and talks about Brazil. It's a great way to explain Brazil to some American fellows I've met and when I read it and realize that there are people out there that know how wonderful Brazil is, it just makes me feel great. You guys have done a good job! Thanks!

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How refreshing it was to read "The Little BlindOne is Your Mother"— cvrmar02.htm — and to know that Brazilian minorities can still laugh at their own problems in spite of the attempts by the USA to export their twisted politically correct mania to the rest of the world. As Marta Alvim very well said: "Let's hope Brazil can overcome its own inequities while preserving its identity." Well done, ceguinho!

Maria Lucia Prado Via Internet ONE DROP ADVANTAGE

Dear Marta, nice Article in the Brazzil magazine... ( ). As an African-American with Spanish and Native American admixture, Brazil has always intrigued me on the issue of race. It exists in a vacuum: everywhere and nowhere at the same time. With the largest black population outside Nigeria, Brazil is uniquely poised to address this issue... One of the benefits of segregation in the US was the one drop rule, which is being debated today... As a people, African-Americans were not defined by color of hair, skin etc. Ifyou had any African ancestry, regardless of appearance we were categorized as black. This caused us to be united in fighting against oppression. A separate society was created with institutions, banking, colleges. This rigid rule resulted in AfricanAmericans in the US as the most educated, wealthiest politically astute group of African people on earth.., despite the obstacles that confronted us—slavery, segregation, lynchings, discrimination. My years on this planet have been a journey in search ofself. I have been on a quest to embrace the cultures, history and people of the African Diaspora. My travels have taken me to Kenya, Brazil, Martinique, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Haiti, St Lucia and Dominica... My diary based on my observations and experiences when I went to Brazil for the first time was published in Brazzil

Brazilian girl. She is 18, her mother is a teacher and her father is a food wholesaler. I was shocked to hear that she has never made her own bed; never washed the dishes; never hung the laundry. She says that it is common to have servants. She seemed to lack understanding of political issues, or she couldn't or didn't want to express them. She is new at English and is learning fast; she wants a second language to help her chances oflanding a teaching position at one ofthe many private schools. Like me, she is captured by the marketing machine and desires the fashion and food that is keeping her own people in chains. Largely due to I think, her desire to attract a mate and of course to be cool. The media drives this imageconscious age and this lines the pockets of the wealthy minority.

Chris Wirth Australia, Via Internet

SPREADING THE GOOD WORD I'm very glad to have found your on-line magazine Brazzil. I'm Brazilian and I live in Brazil. But since my early years one of the facts that bothered me the most was that virtually nothing was known about Brazil abroad and FOR MORE LETTERS AND ENTIRE LETTER SEE:

what was known was mostly wrong. Well, you must know that better than me.

Especially the confusion made between Brazilians and the Spanish-speaking peoples is somewhat irritating. Anyway, I ended up promising to myselfthall would never be ignorant of the world's ethnic and cultural diversity - now that I am graduating in Journalism, I intend to turn myselfto these issues. I am quite a specialist on international affairs and have studied historical linguistics, anthropology and speak several languages.

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BRAZILIAN ACCENT I'm aTV commercial producer based in Los

Angeles who started in this business making documentaries. And I've done a few from baseball to capital punishment to the outlaw mythology for Ted Turner and TBS. I'm in the early stages of researching a doc on the Brazilian influences in contemporary ppp/rock/ja77, particularly non Brazilian musicians (e.g. Nelly Furtado, Sting, David Byrne, Pat Metheny among many others). The genesis of this idea sprung from a feature project that I have been working on with director Ricardo van Steen on Noel Rosa. As I learned more about Rosa and as I paid more attention to my own musical tastes, I began to notice the influence on a variety of artists. I read your article on "Tropicalismo celebrating 30 Years" - cyrdec97.htmonline - and was quite impressed. At the same time I'm sort of amazed at the paucity of material on my topic. Michael Deane Executive Producer Fuse

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last 3-4 years in Brazil, I have much to say about Brazil and the people whom I learned to dearly love. My best and most devoted friend in the world is a Brazilian whom I met in Phoenix, Arizona, some 10 years ago. She returned to her home in Brazil 3.5 years ago for good. She is 53 years old and one of Brazil's beauties, with a heart full of love and trust. Jam 81 years old and we both are in excellent health. I plan to return to Brazil later this year to be with her and my many friends there.

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thCminimum wage serve

f income inequality slightly but does not have the leas e elimination of the national panorama of pove

Brazil is once again offending its people by conceding a 20 reais ($8.5) per month raise in its workers' minimum wage. Twenty-one million Brazilians will begin the month of April by receiving this increase of 7/10ths of one real per day of work, less than a handout given to a beggar. With this sort of ridiculous raise, lower than the amount the cost of living increased this past year, the Brazilian worker will be able to do practically nothing for his or her family. It is indecent that a country with national revenues now greater than R$ 1.1 trillion ($480 billion)peryear—R$ 6,500 ($2800) per capita—is offering its lowincome workers such a small raise. A much larger one would be possible if the rich Brazilians would accept the distribution of a small part of their own income. But that larger raise would clash with the State's financial limitations and would serve little as the instrument to combat poverty. Of the 21 million Brazilians who receive a minimum wage, only 9 million are private-sector workers; the other 12 million are public-sector retirees. The wage increase has a great impact upon the public-sector budget. This is why it would be financially difficult to raise the minimum wage to the amount that the worker has every right to desire. The raise in the minimum wage, moreover, has little or no impact upon the struggle to eradicate poverty in Brazil. Even a substantial minimum-wage increase would do little to guarantee everyone access to the essential goods and services—education, food, healthcare, public transportation, runn ing water, sewerage, and garbage collection. Because none of these goods and services will be available in the marketplace to the lowBRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

income worker. Even ifthe minimum wa were to grow 100 percentto R$ 400 ($174 the worker would not have money to p for a good private school for his or h; r children, or to buy medical insurance f r the family. Or to install running water a indoor plumbing in his or her house. While it is immoral to accept the r diculous raise in the minimum wage, it s demagoguery to propose great m in imu wage increases and, moreover, incomp tence to propose the eradication of po erty through income alone. The soluti in to Brazil's poverty problem lies in the u e of the available national revenue r sources so that the State can assure 1 Brazilians access to essential goods a d services. To guarantee the monthly R$ 20 ($8.i) increase in the minimum wage, which w'll in no way improve the social conditio s of those who will receive this raise, t public sector will have an additional pense ofR$ 3.1 billion ($1.35 billion), the private sector, one ofR$ 2.3 billion ( billion). Spending more than this can s ut too much pressure upon public expen es and oblige the private sector to dism ss workers or increase product prices. B t, if Brazil should decide to invest that R$ .4 billion ($2.35 billion) per year in so *al incentives, in just a few years a co pletely different social panorama wo Id be possible. It would be possible to guaran ee that in four years no Brazilian home, no matter how poor, would be without nn ing water or indoor plumbing. A fter r i s n g the bolsa escola from R$ 15 ($6.5 to R$ 45 ($1-9.6) per child—R$ 90 ($39) ser family—to keep poor children in school, .6 Brazil would still have RS 100million( million) per year left over. With these two social incentive an

additional income flux would be created for the poor populations—the bolsaescola mothers and the workers constructing the water and sewer systems— but the true result would be the education of the children and the health and comfort afforded by the sanitation systems. But that vision demands anew logic, which is currently impeded by the income trap, the way we all think. In Brazil today, if we should ask anyone whether he or she would prefer to receive only R$ 20 ($8.5) per month or the guarantee of running water and indoor plumbing at home, that person would surely choose the first alternative; if the option were between R$ 20 ($8,5) with no strings attached or R$ 90 ($39) depending upon the school attendance of the family's children, the choice would also be the first alternative. We are losing the capacity to think and make choices on the basis of mediumterm concrete results, and we remain trapped by the idea of immediate income. Therefore, each year, when the moment arrives to debate the amount of the minimum wage, Brazil is divided over how much it should increase, but rarely do we defend a change in priorities. The increase in the minimum wage serves to reduce the tragedy of income inequality slightly but does not have the least impact upon the elimination of the national panorama of poverty. Brazil needs a program of income distribution that begins with a reasonable raise in the minimum wage but that also calls for an immediate "law of abolition," thus permitting a second abolition, that of poverty. That program would cost no more thin R$ 40 billion ($17.4 billion) per year, including all the expenses incurred by the universalization of basic, quality education, agrarian reform, housing, water and sewerage, quality public healthcare, microcredit, and all the projects that, in a period of 15 years, would change the social face of Brazil. Considering that those resources, as they are spent, induce growth and increase public revenue, the total cost would be below 10 percent ofthe Brazilian public-sector revenue. This is such a small amount that it is surprising that it is not yet being spent correctly. The only explanation is that we have all fallen into the income trap and continue offering miserly raises in salary as if this were the only option. Translated by Linda Jerome Cristovam Buarque professor at the Center for Sustainable Development/University of Brasilia, is the author of the book A Segunda Abolicdo (Abolishing

Poverty: A Proposal for Brazil). 17

Only a few months ago it looked as though Brazil was on its way to electing its first woman president, Roseana Sarney, who was then riding high in opinion polls. Now, mired in a financial scandal, she has pulled out of the race, having lost not only the support of ordinary voters but even of her own PFL party. The latest Datafolha poll put her in fourth place and showed that she would have lost in a second-round runoff with the left-wing PT candidate, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. Ms. Sarney recently resigned her post as governor of Maranhao state to stand for the presidency but she is unlikely to be out of political office for long as she has announced that she will run for the Senate. The Sarney grip in its northeastern stronghold is such that she will probably achieve this goal if not the greater goal of the presidency. This dramatic setback follows the police raid earlier this year on a company, jointly owned by Ms Sarney and her husband, which uncovered R$ 1.3 million (US$ 558,000) in cash. Police suspect the money originated from corrupt activities, but Ms. Sarney's husband, Jorge Murad, said it was for electoral expenses and had been donated by well-wishers. The .PFL may be regretting its decision to pull out of the government of President Fernando Henrique Cardoso in sympathy with Ms. Sarney. The quickness with which the Party deserted its former darling shows that one cannot discount the possibility of it even rejoining the government. The other two main parties in the governing alliance—the President's own PSDB (Partido da Social Democracia Brasileira—Party ofthe Brazilian Social Democracy) and the PM DB (Partido do Movimento Democratic° Brasileiro—Party ofthe Brazilian Democratic Movement)—have been making soothing noises and saying they want the PFL in any new government after the presidential election. By giving Ms. Sarney its unqualified support the PFL left voters with the impression that it is more interested in protecting its candidate than seeing justice done. The party is now desperate to get this affair out of the way and has started cooperating in Congress to unblock measures, which its filibustering tactics have held up. In mid-April, after Roseana Sarney finally published a list of names of people who supposedly have made the electoral campaign contributions found in her office, the PFL leader Jorge Bornhausen said that as far as he was concerned the 18

affair was closed. This is wishful thinking but shows that the PFL wants to distance itself from this affair and the would-be presidential candidate. Ms. Sarney's conduct has been unimpressive since the scandal started and she has shown a remarkable lack ofjudgment for one attaining to the highest office in the land. First °fall, she made no attempt to explain why her company was holding such a vast sum of money. Secondly, she claimed to be the victim of a plot by supporters of the probable government candidate, Jose Serra, and said she was being discriminated against because she was a woman. Instead of coming clean, she allowed her allies to flood the media with so many different versions of where the money came from that she lost virtually all credibility and sympathy. In March, Murad resigned from a senior position he held in the state government of Maranhao and said that he alone had been responsible for amassing the money. No-one was impressed and events have shown why— thanks to an announcement by the Maranhao government that Murad had been appointed state Secretary for Science and Technology. Apparently Murad is unqualified for this post but he will benefit since, under the current law, as a senior official he will appear before a court in Brasilia, not Maranhao, where he will be less liable to tough questioning from local prosecutors with local knowledge. For its part, the government has been pretty lily-livered by agreeing to put off the appearances of Ms. Sarney and her husband, which was due to take place in mid-April.

The Sinking of the SS Sarney By giving Roseana Sarney its unqualified support her own party left voters with the impression that it is more interested in protecting its candidate than seeing justice done. JOHN FITZPATRICK

John Fitzpatrick is a Scottish journalist who first visited Brazil in 1987 and has lived in Sao Paulo since 1995. He writes on politics and Finance and runs his own company, Celtic Comunicacks, which specializes in editorial and translation services for Brazilian and foreign clients. You can reach him at if(&,


Red or Pink? The Workers' Party does not want to see any extra pressure on interest rates, the Brazilian currency or the stock market. Any such instability would benefit government's the candidate. JOHN FITZPATRICK


The PT (Partido do Trabalhadores—Work ers' Party) is in confi dent mood as its presi dential candidate, Lui Inacio Lula da Silva, re mains well ahead of th field in the presidenti opinion polls and mor and more people ar starting to think th three-times lose Lula could win thi time round. If Lul is to succeed h will have to co Vince the electo ate that he has p t his militant pa 't behind him and ca represent th whole country, n t just a vested inte est. In April the P took the step of a pointing an offici I spokesman for Lula, n academic from the Un versity of sao Pau o called Andre Singer. Perhaps this show d signs of the party's growing confidence or perhaps Singer was brought in torn.e sure Lula does not deviate too much fro the script and revert to his less dis plined ways. Apparently Lula was not allowed o speak about the recent failed coup n Venezuela off the cuff and his final stat rnent, backing Hugo Chavez, was ma e with the party's approval. Despite th s, within days of S inger' s appointment wh n Lula, in an address to students, said the e could be a coup mounted against him if e were president and he hoped the peo • le would demonstrate on the streets to sa e him, as had happened to Chavez. However, the PT is more than L la even though the presidential candid te does not think so. On Friday, April 19, daily newspaper 0 Estado de S. Pa lo quoted an unnamed PT congressm n (what happened to the official spok sman talking on the record?) as saying at the party was drawing up a strategy to ry and calm down the financial markets wh le Lula' s ratings rise. The PT does not want to see any ex ra pressure on interest rates—the Cent al Bank kept interests at their sky-high 1 vels of 18.5 percent with no sign of y upcoming reduction—the Real or he

stock market. Any such instability would benefit the government's probable candidate, former health minister Jose Serra, and the PT would get the blame. The paper said that many PT congressmen do not want to jeopardize the party's real chances of winning and, for this reason, have cooperated with the government in negotiating an end to the impasse over the blocked CPMF financial movement tax. Does this augur a new beginning for the PT? For several years I have been bewailing the PT's failure to join European socialist parties, like the UK Labor Party, and ditch its hard-left baggage. No-one who has visited Brazil and seen the huge social differences between the rich and poor could doubt that a moderate PT could win great support. I have also pointed out the similarities between the aims of President Fernando Henrique Cardoso's PSDB and the PT. So I would love to think that the PT has reformed itself but, unfortunately, it is far too early to accept that it has. At the moment, the financial markets are fairly stable but that is because the election is still a long wayoff. At the same time, the market does not have much faith in the opinion polls and is waiting for the start of the television propaganda to see if Serra picks up support. As for image, Serra is not the most photogenic person and he is still very far behind Lula, so a bet on television saving the day is risky. It does not take much to make markets nervous and a few conciliatory gestures in Congress and soothing words from a PT spokesman will mean nothing if the market starts getting ants in its pants. It is also a bit difficult to imagine someone like Lula not saying or doing something which could upset the markets in coming months. His traditional supporters expect him to be a strong leader offering attractive policies andnot a muted lapdog. I have another reason for doubting that the PT has changed its colors. On April 11, I attended a day-long conference in Sao Paulo on the outlook for the Brazilian economy. Over 400 people took part in the event, which was addressed by leading politicians and economists. One speaker was Guido Mantega who is Lula' s economic adviser and a possible finance minister in a PT government. He told the meeting that the PT was a moderate party and pointed to the recent first primary in which party members had voted overwhelmingly for Lula as their candidate. He also dismissed the idea that a PT 19

government would renegotiate Brazil's foreign debt. In any case, he said most debt was from the private sector and government debt due this year amounted to only U$ 5 billion. He gave a plausible performance but, a few hours later, none other than Andre Singer gave a presentation in which he stressed the PT's radical side. Singer, who had not been made official spokesman at the time of the event, outlined the party's manifesto and stressed that, under a PT government, there would be no continuation ofthe policies ofthe Cardoso administration but a complete rupture. These seeming contradictions do not mean, ofcourse, that Mantega and Singer are trying to hoodwink the public or are even at odds with each other. However, the fact that Singer highlighted the manifesto, which bears the fingerprints of the militant wing of the party, shows that one cannot just accept that the PT has changed its policies or will change them. MST & Lula Reality shows are all the rage on Brazilian television at the moment with millions glued to the screen watching "real" people in "real" situations and how they react to each other. In fact these shows are far removed from reality and the people far from real. In one show 12 actors were locked away together in a house for 45 days and left to get on each other's nerves. This non event certainly got on this writer's nerves as it became a national talking point. It was impossible to have a conversation with anyone without some reference to it. Several of the participants have become "celebrities" and their faces peer at us from countless magazine covers and advertisements. One "star" who emerged from this particular show was the son ofthe Worker Party's Senator Eduardo Suplicy and his estranged wife Marta, the mayor of So Paulo. The younger Suplicy and his mother share the same taste in blonde hairstyles and black eye shadow. Suplicy the younger—who calls himself Supla— dresses like a punk from the mid-70s, although he is nearly 40, and his chances of achieving international rock stardom 20

are as likely as his father's were of becoming the PT's presidential candidate. As we now know Suplicy's attempt to assume the PT mantle failed at the PT's firstprimary convention. Lula triumphed, as expected, but Suplicy's performance was quite impressive and.he notched up a respectable tally ofaround 15 percent of votes. These were, of course, protest votes by PT members opposed to moves by Lula to form an electoral alliance with the evangelical PL party. Suplicy is fartoo eccentric a character to hold high office although the Brazilian political scene would be poorer without his antics. His public behavior since his wife abandoned him for a chic FrenchArgentinean heartthrob, such as pledging his undying love to Marta (who incidentally voted for Lula) and hiring a young sexy personal trainer, have been more entertaining than any television soap opera or reality show. After the primary, Lula was riding high although he was still aggrieved at having to go through the humiliation of a vote. This is because he sees himself as the embodiment of the PT, which he founded over 20 years ago. Lula was still riding high when the cash scandal over state governor and presidential hopeful Roseana Sarney broke a few weeks ago. This scandal pushed her from her lofty position in the opinion polls where she was challenging the PT leader. Lula musthave enjoyed the sight of Sarney's PFL party accusing the PSDB ofthe probable government candidate, Jose Serra, of plotting against her and organizing a police raid On a company she owns which turned up R$ 1.3 million (US$ 558.000) in an office safe. However, Lula is not chuckling any more thanks to a real reality show which glued Brazilians to thetelevision recently, when members ofthe MST landless peasant movement broke into the holiday ranch owned by the sons of President Fernando Henrique Cardoso. The MST supporters made themselves at home and were filmed relaxing on sofas and helping themselves to drinks. The sight of this unwashed riffraff, with grimy tee shirts

and dirty baseball caps littering up a respectable household, drove Brazil's middle class to fury. Many middle class families own small second homes in the countryside and an occupation by MST militants is the embodiment oftheir worst nightmare. The normally placid Cardoso was reported to have been livid about the incident which, thankfully, ended peacefully with the arrest of 16 squatters. Instead of killing the MST members (as they have done in the past) the police merely tied them up and threw them on the ground to let them eat dirt for a while before taking them away. They now face possible charges ranging from trespass to conspiracy. Cardoso was understandably furious for personal reasons, but one does not have to be a cynic to see why he could be pleased for political reasons. Why? Because the MST shares many of the beliefs of the PT and in the eyes of many outraged viewers they are the same thing. The Justice Minister even accused the PT of being responsible. 1fyou read some of the press reports you would think Lula had been behind the occupation. Just as Roseana Sarney was quick to suggest that the government was behind the police raid on her company so Lula saw a hidden hand behind the occupation. He wondered publicly who would benefit by such an action, leaving no doubt that it was the government. However, Lula has to do more than half blame the government if he is not to be tarred by the MST brush. Although the PT and MST have no official links most voters are not aware of th is. Several national PT leaders have publicly condemned the latest MST action but if Lula were to make a credible public condemnation he could reassure some floating voters and, at the same time, show some qualities of leadership. One wonders ifhe is up to facing real reality. John Fitzpatrick is a Scottish journalist who first visited Brazil in 1987 and has lived in Sao Paulo since 1995. He writes on politics and finance and runs his own company, Celtic Comunicacoes, which specializes in editorial and translation services for Brazilian and foreign clients. You can reach him at This article was originally published in Infobrazil (, an E-zine on Brazilian culture and current events. BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

Electrical Politics The large federally owned and operated electric companies are gearing up to resist the first step in 'revitalizing' the sector, read as 'get needed private investment'. CONRAD JOHNSON


Reporting electric energy in Brazil, in parties ofthe left, at the national level, are fact any segment of its infrastructure, is in opposition to the PSDB and its larger always a matter of attending to the poli- central and rightist allies; the leftist parcies ofthe sector in the context of national ties are ever, the contemporary 'opposiparty politics. March was a momentous tion'. This style of identification by being in month in the structure of Brazilian party politics, in the entire political culture as it 'opposition' was assumed a few weeks were. The present federal government no ago by the principal 'right' coalition partlonger controls a majority in Congress, at ner of the PDSB, the PFL, its larger libleast by party affiliation, and for over eral' partner. All started when Roseana eight years nothing has gotten through Sarney—by then a presidential hopeful Congress without needing party-faithful with impressive number in the polls— was personally linked to business entisupport. ties that were the subject of a Justice H istorical ly the Brazilian political le has prided itself, in fact identified itself, Department search and seizure warrant by not seeking allies except with other (one of 82 issued in this particular investigation). The PFL chose her candidacy leftist parties that too insisted on isola tion from centrist and rightist parties over its almost 8 year partnership with the PSDB. (The petty cash drawer, incidenThey exhort the population that it is un ethical to work with parties dominated b •tally, had nearly $US 1 million in assorted, but bundled currencies.) hereditary political elites. The result h Until last year's drought and crisis in been that they are left out of power excep electric energy with consequent rationin a few municipalities and a few state ing, the electric sector has been domi(where such coalitions are common), whil nated by the PFL. Tucanos, or card-carrythe PFL (Partido da Frente Liberal—Lib ing members of the PSDB, recently took eral Front Party), dominates in the North limited control of the electric sector east—and with important party enclave through its emergency crisis committee throughout the entire country—has neve the GCE. With the PFL leaving the had less than the second largest Con Cardoso coalition the electric sector will gressional representation since its birt now finally come under PSDB control. as the 'liberal alternative to military rule' Just how many PFL members will resign The party of President Fernand their jobs in the electric sector is not Henrique Cardoso, the PSDB (Partido d known, but the Presidents of Eletrobras Social Democracia Brasileira—Party o (government holding company for Brazil's the Brazilian Social Democracy), has ac electric companies), Fumas (Eletrobras cumulated only the third largest Con subsidiary) and the Minister of Mines gressional representation, but leads th and Energy—in effect—all the highest present federal administration and co government jobs in electric have been siders itself a leftist party with centri vacated by their PFL faithful. and rightist coalition partners All oth Pedro Parente, the Tucano who lead the GCE and the person responsible for recent efforts to revitalize the sector, has taken over the Ministry. Since he will probably leave government soon to run for office, it is no doubt an interim appointment. But he is already talking about reforming the Ministry. President Cardoso has indicated he would like a "professional" in the job for the rest of his term. A "professional" means someone who is chosen for their knowledge of the sector and their ability to manage, and not necessarily someone with the right political party credentials. The model is Arminio Fraga, the Brazilian-American President ofthe Brazilian Central Bank. If one is looking for a good spin in electric for these recent events, one needs look no further than the struggling wholesale market. Furnas refusal to honor its contractual obligations, and then Eletrobras insistence that the new ltaipu production does not belong to the distributors who buy its generation, have ever retarded wholesale market development. Although never made public, it is well known that Parente and Eletrobras have 21

very different ideas about Itaipu (world's largest power plant) 'excess'. Parente has consistently sided with the electric regulatory authority Aneel that has twice ruled that the new (since last April) excess (worth US$300 millions in 2001) belongs by contractual right to its distributor-clients to commercialize under the same conditions they presently purchase from the bi-national Itaipu. Eletrobras foiled these efforts by getting a court injunction that prohibited closing wholesale accounts on this basis. As a result wholesale accounts have never cleared even for 2001, and just recently the government has had to purchase over US$200 million in receivables from the two natural gas generators who produce only for the wholesale market. This alone won't make gas thermo generation viable; even Petrobras and Eletrobras have publicly announced they are discontinuing further investment in natural gas generation. Difficulties will undoubtedly outweigh advantages however because the large federally owned and operated electric companies are gearing up to resist the first step in 'revitalizing' the sector (read as `get needed private investment'). Especially the large federal companies in the economically problematic North and

Northeast—Eletronorte and Chesf—are upset with the whole idea of diverticalization, even though they are specifically excluded from privatization in the government's present plans for the sector. These companies have been the playgrounds, since the years of military dictatorship, for present and future PFL faithful to learn the political patronage game that gives their party cohesive power. Strangely, or perhaps logically, no offers of resignation have been sent to Brasilia by management ofthese companies. They claim "technical expertise" underlies their appointments—something like what the President is calling "professional"—even though their objections to separating into separate transmission and generation companies is that the companies will be weakened. That this 'structural weakness' would assist in creating competitive conditions in the electric sector, as it does in all competitive markets, serves no coherence in the North and Northeast. There development is inconceivable unless wed to patrimony. The profound extent to which Brazilian infrastructure is dependent on private investment is written large in the specific content of its needs. There are critical projects totaling $US 215 billion

in infrastructure investment through 2005 already on the country's plate. Nearly half of that is in electric projects. With failed state privatizations in 2001 in Parana, Sao Paulo and Goias (all with assets offered at very competitive minimums, prospective investors agreed) Eletronorte wants to offer, by October 2002, controlling interest in its $US 6 billion, 11 mil MW 'dream' hydro project Belo Monte in the heart of the Amazon Basin on the Xingu River. It can't fail but be interesting to see how patrimonial-minded rightists in the North team-up with development-minded Tucanos in Brasilia and together find that much new investment for one electric project. Fernando Henrique has said, "I want it done", no doubt with October elections for his successor in his propositional attitude. This coming attraction will be played out, as well, before a worldwide coalition of NGOs because Belo Monte has long been their collective 'nightmare.' Conrad Johnson, the author, is an American attorney, permanently residing in Brazil. He writes for various publications on development and legal issues in Latin America. You can reach him at

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The Latin American Institute at the University of New Mexico published a pamphlet suggesting that "by 1800 free African-Brazilians represented an estimated 30 percent of the population (of Brazil)—the same as whites". If the remainder ofthe population was comprised of African slaves and/or indigenous Brazilian natives, then non-whites must have accounted for an estimated 70 percent of all Brazilians at that time. It's hard to imagine how many Africans the Portuguese must have been importing over the 300 years before I 800. And with 88 years remaining before slavery would be formally abolished in Brazil, the overall percentage of non-whites to whites remained fairly constant throughout the nineteenth century. Writers other than myself. including other writers for Bra:zil magazine, have asserted that the subjugation of Africans transported to Brazil and the Caribbean constituted a form of "sugar slavery". Perhaps the complexity of history, and the complex nature of Brazil, can be better understood by reconstructing the sugartrail and the world in which it existed. The origins of African slave labor The origins, and subsequent history, of the African slave trade have been associated indirectly with sugar through the introduction and consumption of 24

Sugar and Blood The French and Dutch nearly went to war over a border dispute in South America. But the importance of the coffee trade was such that in order to avoid a war that would interrupt that commerce they appealed to the Brazilians to arbitrate their disagreement". PHILLIP WAGNER

coffee, tea and cocoa. This hypothesis is supported by the fact that an estimated four million Africans were transported to Brazil in chains, and another four million to the Caribbean, while only about half a million were transported to the English colonies and their subsequent identity, the United States. Cacao, tobacco, cotton and, eventually, coffee and tea also became plantation crops in Brazil; and cacao, tobacco and cotton became cash crops in the Caribbean. But Brazil and the Caribbean comprised the world's primary sugar growing regions, and sugar was king. Henry Hobhouse in Seeds of Change argues that "Sugar was the first food (drug), dependence upon which led Europeans to establish tropical mono-culture to satisfy their own addiction". He adds that "Because sugar cane was (such a) labor intensive crop. . perhaps three quarters of all the Africans transported across the Atlantic, perhaps as many as 15 million. .. must be debited to sugar". How addicting was (and is) sugar? In the years between 1783 and 1793, Britain controlled more than half of the sugar trade between the Old and New Worlds. Hobhouse calculates that almost 60 percent of that volume was consumed by Britains themselves. That means that "perhaps 25 percent of English maritime effort, the work of a quarter million workers in England and the sun baked effort of all those whites and slaves in the colonies was an expensive substitute for alternative sources of energy". The origins of sugar Sugar is thought to have originated in Polynesia, although no one seems to know exactly when. It migrated westward at a glacial pace, probably at first as small pieces began to wash ashore on distant beaches. Distinct strains of sugar developed in India and Indonesia. Hobhouse, who traces threads of history that grew from actual seeds, says that sugar was being "chewed as an aphrodisiac sweetmeat in about 1000 BC". But sugar only first appeared in Europe duringthe Middle Ages. It might seem curious that such an addictive substance would spread so slowly. Sugar cane was first distilled and crystallized around 700 BC in India and "introduced to China as sugar". BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

When Columbus brought sugar into the Caribbean in 1494 it was labeled "Creole", a term which implied "naturalized to and born"; something which at that time had no racial connotation. It seems especially ironic that this event foreshadowed the subsequent explosion of trade in black human beings. In 1454, exactly a half-century before Columbus first delivered sugar cane seedlings to Haiti, coffee seedlings were making their way from southeastern Ethiopia to the Arabian Peninsula. And within two decades of Columbus's delivery coffeehouses (by 1511) opened in Constantinople, Mecca and Medina and the Spanish conquistador Cortez (in 1519) encountered a beverage prepared from cacao (cocoa) beans in Mexico. This suggests that cocoa may have been introduced to Europe, through Spain, before both coffee and tea. But cocoa, without sugar, failed to create much of a stir. "One commentator" according to Richard Swift in his magazine article "The Cocoa Chain" "at the time shook his head at the bitter tasting drink, claiming it was more fit for pigs than people. But innovation through the adding of sugar transformed chocolate for the sweet European palate and it grew in popularity". The Aztecs and Mayans of course didn't know about sugar. But they added a "delicate mixture of sp ices, honey and flowers to get a recipe correct". In 1500, according to Katia Mattoso, author of To be a Slave in Brazil, "there were no more than 25,000 slaves in the Old World. Interest in the slave trade did not really develop until the discoverers ofthe New World . . . realized that these vast new territories called for new modes of exploitation" (related to sugar and the beverages that prompted its demand). Mattoso also notes that between 1572 and 1652 "the price of (African) slaves . . . doubled. This increase reflected both the increased price of sugar and the increased demand for slave labor". Hugh Thomas (The Slave Trade)lists the average price of a slave in 1504 Lisbon as about 5,000 reis. By 1593 the indicated average price was 20,000 to 30,000 reis, roughly a five-fold increase. Use of the word "cha", probably derived from the Chinese character "ch' a" that was assigned to represent tea around 725, appeared in Lisbon after 1550 and the Portuguese began to import tea around 1580 (McCoy and Walker, Coffee and Tea). According to Mattoso, "the Portuguese who had settled Brazil took it upon themselves as BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

early as 1559 to furnish their Brazilia estates with a supply ofB lack manpower.' And, more importantly, she adds tha "Bahia. . . and Pernambuco. . . becam major centers for the importation ofslaves indispensable for the economic develop ment of the sugar-producing hinterland" Peter Winn, author of the 600-pag Americas; the Changing Face of Lati America and the Caribbean describe how "At first the Portuguese tried t solve their labor problem by bribing o coercing the local (Tupi) Amerindia population to work on their sugar estates But the Tupis . . . were unaccustomed t regular hard labor and uninterested i earning a steady wage. They either sick ened and died under the Portuguese las or else slipped (back) into the nearb forest". Mattoso agrees that the indig enous population of Bahia, where th Portuguese first established sugar plan tations, was "soon decimated by war an disease. The Indians did not adapt well t being forced to work as sedentary agri cultural laborers". "After 1570," say. Hobhouse, "Brazilian planters began to replace them with African slaves". Th African slave trade, fueled by an incipie demand for sugar in Europe, had begun ii earnest. Captain James Smith, prior to estab lishing the colony of Jamestown in 160 mentioned coffee in his 1603 book Tray and Adventures. Documented evidenc ofcoffee consumption in England doesn't appear until 1637, although Venetian began the importation of coffee into E rope in 1615. A coffee-house was esta lished near Oxford by a Lebanese immi grant in 1650, and an apothecary ne Oxford began selling coffee five yea later. Hobhouse writes that coffee w introduced to England in 1652, along wi cacao and tea. So there is some disagre

ment regarding exact dates, but the parallel spread ofthe new beverages in Europe and cultivation of sugar cane in the New World is not disputed. Increasing demand for sweetened, boiled beverages resulted in escalating demand for sugar. Growing and (particularly) processing sugar cane is brutal work; work that Europeans were not inclined to pursue. The significance of choice Consider the importance of the introduction of the three new beverages derived from cocoa, coffee and tea to Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries, and its subsequent full impact on the fate of African peoples and the future development of Brazil. According to Hobhouse, "At the time of the introduction of these beverages, water was not fit to drink in most towns and villages". In the context of modern day society it's virtually impossible to appreciate the significance ofthat statement. Imagine that there were no non-alcoholic beverages available to you today other than plain boiled water or milk? Who could have produced large enough quantities ofm i lk to meet demand anyway? And there was no refrigeration to keep it. There were no canned or bottled juices, no carbonated sodas, no instant artificially flavored drinks and no V-8. There were, of course, alcoholic beverages, but the consumption of significant quantities of alcohol must have been counterproductive for society. It's one thing to suggest European children are introduced to wine at an early age. But imagine children largely sustained by beer and wine all day every day. Try to imagine the impact of commonly intoxicated public servants, church officials, carriage drivers and field workers. These are the people


that every community in Europe relied on the 1500.S. The introduction of hot coffee, tea and cocoa drinks produced by boiling water triggered an explosive demand on a scale that's hard to appreciate today. But Hobhouse observed that "all three were crude, often bitter, and not consumable, it was said, without sugar". Sugar was really the key to satisfying Europe's demand for the new beverages. Demand and value One measure ofdemand for any product is its natural 'supply and demand' value. In colonial North America tea was almost always under lock and key. The 1773 British tax on tea in the colonies provided a pretext for the Boston Tea Party that was staged by the radical 'Sons of Liberty' faction in pre-Revolutionary War Massachusetts. And the high value of tea encouraged such severe and unscrupulous adulteration of it that Tea Baron, Mr. Twining, accused an English village of producing 20 tons of adulterated tea annually. "The adulterants" quotes Hobhouse "were ash leaves collected by children and boiled in a copper with sheep's dung". In Coffee and Tea Elin McCoy and John Frederick Walker relate that tea "was so costly that only the aristocracy could afford it and the necessary accoutrements for storing and serving it. But by 1666 the price had been lowered to (the equivalent of) a mere eighty to one hundred dollars a pound". They also point out that the price of a small serving of coffee in 1683 New Amsterdam (New York) equated to the price of an entire good meal. In The Cocoa Chain Richard Swift wrote that "with the establishment of chocolate houses in London a tax of75p (pence) a pound kept the price out of reach of ordinary folks". Swift says that the cacao "bean was so highly valued that it was used (by Mayans) as a form of currency at a fixed market rate" and was hoarded by Aztec emperors. "At one point" there were "some nine hundred and sixty million beans in the (Aztec) royal coffers". "Follow the money trail" Who can forget that cryptic advice given by "Deep Throat" to Washington Post investigative reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein in the film A // the President's Men? Wherever there is anything of such importance in society there 26

is incentive for political intrigue. A Polish spy who helped Austria halt the advance of 300,000 invading Turks took possession of the sacks of Turkish coffee the invaders left behind. With permission, he opened the first European cafĂŠ in that part of Europe and coffee replaced Ale as the beverage of choice. According to Maryjo Koch, author of Coffee; Delectable for All Seasons the explosion of demand for coffee triggered a national crisis in Prussia. Frederick II" . . . . annoyed that so much money was bleeding out of his empire into foreign coffers, mounted a campaign against the brew, aided by physicians willing to denounce it". Johann Sebastian Bach, representing the unyielding public, responded by poking fun at the King in his Coffee Cantata. Koch also relates that religious zealots had earlier attempted to close down coffee houses in the Near East but says that their efforts were thwarted by "Rulers who . . . though suspicious of (the) subversive intellectual activity (associated with such establishments) were seduced by the tax revenue they brought in." McCoy and Walker (Coffee and Tea) tell the following story that underscores the value of coffee as a commodity in the I 7th century. The French and Dutch, who "jealously guarded their fledgling coffee industries" in Colonial South America, nearly went to war over a border dispute

Maybe the ultimate reflection of the political influence of sugar is more direct. Hobhouse says, "The West Indian merchants carried such weight that the sugar islands were considered in 1763 as being more important than Canada, both British and French, and by one section of politicians as being more vital even than the American colonies". It seems clear that the African slave trade was as much a product of sugar as sugar was a product of African labor. The disruptive economic and sociopolitical impacts of demand for sugar on Africa itself were pronounced. Thomas (The Slave Trade) writes "An intelligent historian, Fernando da Silva Correa, reported about 1789 that eighty eight percent of the income of Luanda derived from the trade in slaves". But in the case of Africa the monetary profits fueled an insidious form of social self-destruction. Tribal rivalries were inflamed and exploited for the sole purpose of generating a continuing stream of slave 'inventory'. Thomas quotes a Swedish mineralogist. "The wars in which the inhabitants carry on with each other are chiefly of a predatory nature, and owe their origin to the yearly number of slaves, which the Mandingos, or the island traders, suppose will be wanted by the vessels which arrive on the coast". He also quotes the historian Vasina. "The (slave) trade explains most of the history of the kingdoms of Central Africabetween 1500 and 1900". One former African King of Dahoma, he says, generated an annual income ofabout a quarter million pounds in the trading of slaves. He contrasted that to "The richest English landowner" who at that time "might expect an income of only forty to fifty thousand pounds". Medicinal precedent

between Dutch Suriname and French Guiana. But the importance of the coffee trade was such that in order "to avoid interruption that warfare would mean to their commerce . . . they appealed to the Brazilians to arbitrate their disagreement". The wife ofthe governor ofFrench Guiana gratefully "presented (the arbitrator) Francisco de Melo Palheta, a lieutenant colonel in the Brazilian army ... with a bag of coffee, seeds and several seedlings". Palheta immediately resigned his commission and quickly established what has become the world's largest coffee industry; that of Brazil.

Coffee, tea and cocoa were at first primarily considered medicinal beverages. It's important to understand how significant the focus was on medicinal qualities in society because, again, it helps us appreciate how greatly they were valued when they were first introduced. The value of these beverages drove the demand for sugar. And sugar in turn triggered and sustained demand for African slave labor. A Venetian merchant documented medicinal aspects of tea; a second hand account provided by "a Persian Merchant describing Chinese tea drinking customs" in 1559. A Persian legend tells that the archangel Gabriel delivered the Prophet Muhammad his first cup of coffee, after BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

which Muhammad is said to have declared that he could "unseat 40 horsemen and possess 5Q women". The high fat content of cacao made it an important food source in a world where survival could depend on the ability to sustain oneself for periods without reliable availability of food sources. Aztec warriors carried light high-energy chocolate on military campaigns. If you're old enough, you might recall watching films that depicted American G.I.s carrying chocolate during the Second World War. Chocolate was included in the C-rations I carried in Vietnam.

Caribbean in the same decade (Wa 1987)". Richardson adds that with "i vention of the vacuum pan early in th nineteenth Century more sugar juic could be evaporated at lower temper tures without scorching; and the volum of the molasses by-product was reduce accordingly" meaning increased ef ciency producing more product with le labor. Human addiction to sugar ensur that a relative and regional significan would continue, as it has to this day, many Caribbean countries. "Sugar ca remains the principal cash crop of t Caribbean region as it has for nearly fi The decline of cane-sugar hundred years" says Richardson. B t and slavery sugar cane based economies in t e Twenty-first Century only support The idea that the abolitionist move- poverished populations. On a grander scale, the cane-sug ment is alone responsible for the demise of the African slave trade fails to account industry declined precipitously after 180 for economic and political realities. Finan- An English law at that time "made t e cial and political interests responding to slave trade illegal for all British subject public demand had initiated and main- (Africans and their History; Joseph tained the African slave trade for more Harris). That precedent coincided wi than three centuries. New economic fac- the emergence of beet-sugar productio tors related to development of an alter- advancements in cane sugar refining a d nate sugar source, technological advance- increasing pressure from abolitionist ments, and political interests had as much The first abolitionist 'legal' success ca to do with ending to slavery as moral in 1772 when a British court"ruled again slavery in England"; that is on the isla outrage. During the Napoleonic Wars of the of Great Britain itself. Other success early 1800s "French sugar ships had to followed a more significant 1807 Briti run the blockades of the (British) Royal ruling in the Netherlands, the United Stat Navy in the West Indies" and "also suf-. and elsewhere; but for awhile the la fered the loss of 100,000 tons of sugar a were not reliably enforced. Harris supports my own linkage of e year which had previously been produced by Dominica". Between 1791 and 1804 success of abolition to economic a d (Bonham C. Richardson, The Caribbean political factors, but with an African twi t. in the Wider World 1492-1992)". . . the "The story of abolition is frequently po slaves of the western half of Hispanola trayed as humanitarianism. While t e galvanized themselves.. . defeating Brit- curtailment of the traffic in itself w ish, Spanish and French armies, thereby humane, it is clear that economic imper forcibly transforming French Saint Domi- tives in large measure accounted for nique into the Black Republic of Haiti". success of abolitionism. The huge profi Napoleon encouraged commercial devel- accrued from the slave trade made po opment of sugar from a variety of beet; sible greater industrial developme t following up on earlier work conducted by a researcher in Berlin. Commercial production ofbeetsugar undercut the sugar cane's overwhelming economic and political influence, and weakened demand for slave labor. Growing beets was nowhere near as labor intensive as growing sugar cane. Technological advances also undermined justification for slave labor. "OnJanuary 11, 1797, a steam engine ground stalks ofsugar cane at the Seybabo mill in Cuba" (Marino Fraginals 1976) "and •steam powered mills arrived in the islands of the British and French BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

which created a demand for legitimate products such as oil for lubricants and soap. In order to exploit these and other products which were known to exist in Africa, peace and stability, which could not occur alongside the slave trade, had to be established". African slavery simply began to lose its economic appeal, and political support for the trade in human beings began to erode rapidly. From that point forward, says Hobhouse "the slave trade was condemned as an immoral cruelty that was economically inefficient". Sources:

Africans and their History, Joseph E. Harris Americas; the Changing Face ofLatin America and the Caribbean, Peter Winn Coffee and Tea, Erin McCoy and John Frederick Walker Coffee; Delectable for All Seasons, Maryjo Koch Seeds of Change, Henry Hobhouse The African Exchange; Toward a Biological History ofBlack People, Kenneth F. Kiple, editor The Anchor Atlas of World History, Volume II The Caribbean in the Wider World (1492-1992), Bonham C. Richardson The Cocoa Chain, journal article, publication uncertain, Richard Swift The Frugal Gourmet Cooks American, Jeff Smith The Slave Trade, Hugh Thomas The Latin American Institute at the University of New Mexico To Be a Slave in Brazil (1550-1888), Katia M. de Queir6s Mattoso Phillip Wagner is a frequent contributor to Brazzil magazine, and a frequent traveler to Brazil. You may contact Phillip at and/ or visit his Brazil web-pages at http://—pwa2ner/brazilhome.htm .


tom-tom loam he's a littlejesuschrist lying down like this doesn't even look like a child the old long blond hair goatee brown eyes a littlejesuschrist print bought on a sunny sunday at the republic square experimenting rebellious. LUIZ RUFFATO

1. Cabecalho Sao Paulo, 9 de maio de 2000. Terca-feira. 2.0tempo Hoje, na capital, o ceu estard variando de nublado a parcialrnente nub lado. Temperatura—Minima: 14°. Maxima: 23°. Qualidade do ar oscilando de regular a boa. 0 sol nasce as 6h42 e se pOe as 17h27. A lua é crescente. 3. Hagiologia Santa Catarina de Bo lonha, nascidaem Ferrara, na Italia em 1413, foi abadessa de urn mosteiro em Bolonha. No Natal de 1456 recebeu o Menino Jesus das !nabs de Nossa Senhora. Dedicou sua vida a assistencia aos necessitados e tinha como Unica preocupacao cumprir a vontade de Deus. Morreu em 1463. 4.A caminho 0 Neon vaga veloz por sobre o asfalto irregular, ignorando ressaltos, lombadas, regos, buracos, saliencias, costelas, seixos, negra nesga na noite negra, aprisionada, a mUsica hipnOtica, turn-turn turn-turn, rege o tronco que tranca, turn-turn turn-turn, sensuais as maos deslizam no couro do volante, turn-turn turn-turn, o corpo, o carro, avancam, abduzem as luzes que luzem a esquerda a direita, um anel comprado na Portobello Road, satelite no dedo medio direito, turn-turn turnturn, o bad° zune na direcao do Aeroporto de Cumbica, ao contrario cruzam faro is de 6nibus que convergem de toda parte, mais neguim pra se foder urn metro e setenta e dois centimetros estci no certificado de alistamentomilitar, calca e camisa G iorgio Armani, perfume Polo borrifado no pescoco, sapatos italianos, escanhoado, cabelo a-maquina-dois, Rolex de ouro sob o tapete, mais neguim pra se fader 28

ela deve estar chegando, uma dessas estrelas que sobrevoam a estrada, a mulher, o patrdo compromisso inadiavel em Brasilia expliquei pra sim, claro, ele o trata como filho que gostaria de ter tido sim, claro, o litho urn babaca o cocainemano passeia sua arrogancia pelas salas da corretora, sim, claro, o filho urn babaca o cocainomano desfila seus esteroides por mesas de boates e barzinhos que jã quebrou—, por rostos de leties-de-chacara e de garotas de programa—que j quebrou—, por maquinas de escrever de delegacias—que tambem ja sim mas é meu filho e suborna a policia, o delegado, o dono da boate, as garotas de programa, os leOes-de-chacara, sim mas é meu filho sim, claro, a filha mora no Embu, macrobiOtica, artista plastica esoterica, os quadros sempre os mesmos quern nao tern olhos pra ver riscos vermelhos, histericos, espasmodicos, grossos, finos, fundo branco nao tern olhos pra ver uma vez comeu ela horrivel no estudio entre pinceis e latas de tinta sobre uma mesa onde jazia esticada uma imensa tela em branco isso é arte ela cheiro de incenso maconha é natural nua sob a bata indiana, restos de semen na superficie branca isso é arte mais neguim pra se foder BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

amuou num canto arrependida? nao passa de urn empregadinho sum, mas opal me adora urn profissional competente porque ganho dinheiro pra ele na bolsa urn apartamento enorme em moema um por andar tres suites contratei um desses veados dinheiro neio é problema ele montou um circo o mulherio estranha ai eufalo a decoracdo e do fulano elas tern orgasmo sim, competente: ha seis anos escorria sua palida magreza pelas poucas sombras das ruas tristes de muriae cidade triste ha cinco anos vestia-se corn as prime iras neves de fairfield ohio gracas a uma bolsa do american fields ganha em concurso promovido pe la loj a do rotary club de muriae cidade triste ha quatro anos arranhava suas incertezas no citibank suas certezas no citibank ha dois anos ganha dinheiro pro o velho nii o vai deixar porra nenhuma pra mim ha um ano cuida do caixa-dois da corretora vai ficar tudo pros e la desembarca london-gatwick urn ane I adquirido na portobello road na palma da mao 6 seu londres como estava? turn-turn turn-turn tum-turn turn-turn 5. De cor Vern os tres, em fila, pela trilha esticada a margem da rodovia. A escuridao dissolve seus corpos, entrevistos na escassa luz dos farois dos caminhties, dos onibus e dos carros que adivinha a madrugada. Cam inham, o mato alto e seco roca as pemas de suas calcas. Sao pai e filho e um rapaz, conhecido-de-vista, que, encorajado, Pode sim. Tern dez anos quevou ape. E uma economia danada no Jim do mes, resolveu acompanha-los. 0 homem dirige empilhadeira numatransportadora no Lima°. 0 menino tern dez-onze anos, embora, franzino, aparente bem menos. Agora, largou a escola, vende cachorro-quente— corn molho de tomate ou de maionese—e coca-cola em frente firma onde o pai trabalha. A noite, guarda o carrinho no patio da empresa, os vigias tomam conta. Quando crescer, perder-se Brasil afora, sonha, caminhoneiro. 0 rapaz, desempregado, aceita qualquer empreitada, 0 negocio ta. feio! 0 menino vai a frente, o homem no meio, o rapaz atras. —Esse al 6, vale ouro, diz, orgulhoso, o pai, tentando vislumbrar a feicao do companheiro, que ofegaasmatico as suas costas, pes farejadores. E de uma inteligencia! Quer ver? V ira-se, mira o letreiro do onibus que passa velozmente, "Garanhuns", fala. — Pernambuco, o menino replica, automaticamente. 0 rapaz desdenha, "E isso?" — Ele sabe onde ficam todas as cidades do Brasil, o pai argumenta. Tern urn mapa na cabeca, o peste. — Todas? — Todas! 0 conhecido-de-vistaentao Ora, vira-se, mira o letreiro do onibus que passa velozmente, Merda!, nao consegue ler, Muito rapido... Merda! Envergonhado, pensa, Alagoinhasnome de sua cidade, "Alagoinhas", Essa, esse nob acerta. — Bahia, o menino responde, displicente. —E Bahia?, o pai indaga, pressuroso. — E, o rapaz acede, contrariado. Sem olhar para tras, aguarda outro onibus que passa velozmente, "Itaberaba", nome da cidade damulher, Agorando é... "Bahia, tambem", 0 reliento acertou! Desgramado! BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

— Num "alei? —Onde1é que esse raio aprendeu essas coisas? —Sei n o... —Ele no é de falar nao, ne? 0 menino! O! e e mei caladao... Asselvajado... Envaid ido, vira-se, mira o letreiro do onibus que passa velozment , "Govemador Valadares". — Min4s Gerais. — Impr ssionante!, o rapaz conforma-se. Caminham, o mato alto e sec pinica seus bravos. pe sou levar ele na televisao? — Heim — E... naqueles programas que as pessoas vao responder as coisas... — Televisao? — Da dinheiro, ne? —0, se! 0 homem busca o filho que marcha a frente escondido dentro de uma jaqueta puida, dois ntiimeros acima do seu tamanho os onibus os caminhOes os carros as luzes Sao Paulo Televisdo... 6. MAe A velha, esbugalhada, tenaz grudada na poltrona numero 3 da linha Garanhuns-Sao Paulo, nao dorme, quarenta e oito horas j a, suspensa, a velocidade do onibus, Meu Deus, pra que tanta correria?, a conversa do motorista corn os colegas colhidos asfalto em-fora, Meu Deus, ele ndo ta prestando atencelo na estrada!, devota, que a viagem termine logo, reia, nem ao banheiro pode, fica balangando sobrecabecas, e, alcancando o fedor do cubiculo no rabo do corredor, nada adiantaria, embora a bexigaespremida, embora o intestino solto, Meu Deus!, sO se alivia nas paradas, findo o sacolejo, E agora?, Ta perto?, Paciencia, vovO!,Ainda demora pouquinho ainda, o empesteado ar de janelas fechadas, vidros suados, no soalho, esparramados, papeis de bala, de bolacha, guardanapos, sacolas, palitos de picole, copos descartaveis, gari-afas plasticas, farelo de biscoito-de-polvilho, de pao, de broa, farinha, restos de comida, pe de sapatinho de croche azul-menino, noitedia,E gente inda consegue dormir, meu Deus, a boconajacaroa, ate ronca!, ate baba!, come que?, embaralham-se distintas paisagens, cidades en0000rmes, cidadezinha que, zum!, passou, as cercas de ar me farpado, as achas, o capim, o cupim, carcacas de b urubus, ceu azul, cobras, seriemas, garrinchas, ca a-sebos, fuscas, charretes, cavalos, bois, burros, bestas, botinas, brejos, beirais, bodes, bosta, baratas, bich as, bananeiras, bicicletas, arvrinhas, arvores, arvorss, arvores, o motor zunindo em-dentro do ouvido zuuuummmm a caatinga, os campos, a cana, a corda, o corgo, o rio, o riacho, o riinho, o fio d 'agua, a agua, o curtume, o couro, o chifre, a cabeca, a ferradura, a came-dc-so!, o sal, cachorros, co//eres,facas, garfos, copos, pratos, a mat), os cheiros, as ehamines, os cachorros, a catinga cuidadocuidadocuidadocuidadocuidado cuidado a dor, as dome._ as dadivas, a dor, as dores, as dores, edificios, a chomine, a fumaca, o cigarro, o fumo, a farinha, ofeija , ofogo, os fogos, o incendlo, as gahnhas, as gentes, as traves do go!, os campos de futebol, jogadores, unifprrnes, cores quarando no varal, o chapeu, a bola, abelha, a bilha, os gatos, as galinhas, as janelas, os jipes, as jib ias, as janelas, as janelas, andarilhos, o medo, o mijo, s mortos, os montes, as montanhas, os mortos, os mo tes, as montanhas, os 29

o motor zunindo em-dentro do ouvido (zuuuummmm) nuvens, noite, a noite noite, a pci, o pe, a poeira, paragens, picadas, pedras pedras pedras, pontes, plantacaes, ratos, roupas, o sertdo, a seca, o sol, o silencio, o sumo, o sol o sol o sol o sol o sol, anzol, terra seca, urubus, umbus, urubus, as vargens, o verde, o cinza, as cinzas, e o cheiro de cuidado cuidado cuidado cuidado cuidado cuidado brancas vacas no verdor do pasto, safaras nuvens, roupa seca, carne-seca, terras, terras, terras, o vento, o dia verdequente, a tarde azul-firienta, a noite de estrelas empoekadas, o mundo, mundogrande, que ndo se acaba mais nunca, e 0 vove, já tamos quase a bexiga estufada, doi a barriga, as costas, Ai!, as escadeiras, UP, as pernas, Ai, Ui, sem posicAo, Ala, vove, ale as luzes de Sao o filho esperando Tantos anos! ganhar a vida em Sampaulo, no Brejo Velho Duas vezes so, voltou, meu Deus, e isso em solteiro, depois, apenas os retratos carreavam noticias, o emprego, a namorada-agora-esposa, eles dois, a cas descostelada, os netos, e vamos entao esperar a senhora para passar o Dia das Miies corn a nossa familia e todos vamos ficar muito felizes mei° preocupa ncio que eu you buscar a senhora na rodoviaria lembrancas a todos do a bexiga caxumbentao o

intestino goguento, como ler o olho do filho?, saber se é faliz no trabalho, no casamento, se mas Ai, a bexiga, a barrigaias costas, Ai!, as escadeiras, UP, as pemas, Ai!, UP, sem posicAo Na rodovidria, de pe, esfrega as mdos. 7.66 A vibracdo do !timer° de hoje estimula a realizacao dos aspectos materials da vida (mais dinheiro e prestigio) pode contar corn a ajuda de um amigo influente pode receber uma promocdo ou heranca: o moment° é para ser pratico e objetivo. 8. Era um garoto um jesuscristinho all ass im de itado nem parece umacrianca os longos cabelos louros cavanhaque antigos olhos castanhos urn jesuscristinho estampa comprada num domingo de sol na feira da praca da republica um garoto experimentando inconformado oval-urn das coisas urn garoto formidavel craque em matematica e fisica e quimica que manjavabem de portugues e cursava o advanced na cultura inglesa urn menino maravilhoso mOsculos enformados no tae-kwon-do urn garoto adordvel empurrando o carrinho de compras da mde no pdo de actIcar achando graca da mania dela de demorar-se entre as gondolas calculadora somando e subtraindo e multiplicando e dividindo ate tropicar nos numeros e irritada nAo mais conferir preco peso data de validade e apOs empilhar tudo nos armarios sentaremse exaustos na sala para ver o jornal nacional equilibrando o prato corn a sobra do almoco na palma das mdos os pes apoiados namesa-de-centro e nesses momentos acreditava-se em sintonia corn urn algo superior em harmonia corn as forcas positivas do universo e ate perdoava aquele que a abandonara uma crianca por criar preciso de um tempo e o jesuscristinho encorpando a ausencia da figura paterna sera que isso vai causar algum problema na cabeca dele as apreensOes receios nAo quer° me meter meu filho mas esse rapaz esse rapaz nAo é uma boa companhia pra voce meu filho ah a vulcdnica adolescencia e desdobrava-se findo o expediente no jornal em free-lances em revistas para o menino freqUentar os melhores ambientes c na legar isso pelo menos incompetente que fora para dar a ele um pal decente de vez em quando ligava como estdo as coisas al ah esse mes tido you poder depositar o dinheiro as coisas nAo estdo indo bem mas no mes que vem sempre a lenga-lenga no dia do aniversdrio e af camped° no natal e al camped° no ano novo e 30

al campedo ano que vem vamos ver se a gente tira umas ferias juntos helm e as noticias ficou s6cio numa assessoria de comunicacdo estou pensando seriamente em tirar o passaporte italiano e ir trabalhar na comunidade europeia fazer qualquer coisa entende casou-se de novo virou pau-mandado na prefeitura as coisas que tern saido nos jomais tudo mentira sua mde que é jornalista sabe é tudo sacanagem é sujeira dá nojo separou-se e juntou-se corn uma men ma uns vinte e poucos anos muita celulite nAo nAo vi mas imagino hoje sac) todas assim ate as modelos nAo ye estd construindo uma mansdo em alphaville estd morando numa mansdo em alphavil le e ela passando dificuldades para guitar as prestacdes do apartamentinho no jabaquara (nunca quis brigar na justica nAo queria atrapalhar a relacdo do menino corn o pal) e ele necessitando colocar aparelho nos dentes e aprendia tanta coisa meu deus liam a vej a e a folha de s. paulo e discutiam os assuntos quando pequenininho ele fazia cada pergunta e agora era ela quern se espantava ante um mundo cada vez mais estapafOrdio e queria engajar-se na luta pela preseryacdo da natureza se associar ao greenpeace e naquele dia que chegou mais cedo tendinite o diagnostic° ele tomando banho o computador ligado entrou no quarto pararecolher aroupa espalhadaemaloqueiro e os olhos relancearam o descanso-de-tela uma enorme bu vagina a bolsa desabou no carpete-de-madeira o molho-de-chaves desabou no carpete-de-madeira seu rosto corado emurcheceu seu coracAo e pensou deixar o comodo fingir que nada mas os pes plantados o filho cruzou a soleira assustados os olhos o corpo escorrendo toalha a cintura a algazarra dos periquitos nos ipes da ma a bolsa o molho-de-chaves espalhados no carpete-de-madeira o poster ozzy osbournecolado naporta do armario vocêjA lanchou meufilho mde balbuciou cue elajd sei vamos sair e corner uma pizza que tal e amadrugada se dissipa os amigos do colegio do predio amontoamse entorpecidos o fumo a parafina colegas conhecidos parentes vozes velorias a cadeira a cabeceira coroa de fibres saudades é urn jesuscristinho assim deitado estampa comprada num domingo de sol na feira da praca republica dezessete anos em agosto tdo feliz tdo undo tab ebmpanheiro tAo querido tdo inteligente tao amoroso meu deus por que qtreele foi fazer isso meu deus por que 9. Ratos Um rato, de pe sobre as patinhas traseiras, rilha uma casquinha de pdo, observando os companheiros que se espalham nervosos por sobre a imundicie, como personagens de urn videogame. Outro, mais ousado, experimentamastigar um pedaco de pano emplastrado de cod') mole, ainda fresco, e, desazado, arranha algo macio e quente, que imediatamente se mexe, assustando-o. No apes, refeito, aferra os dentinhos na came tenra, guincha. Excitado, o bando achega-se, em convulsOes. 0 corpinho debi I, mumificado em trapos fetidos, denuncia O incomodo, o mdsculo daperna se contrai, o pulmdo arma-se para O berreiro, expele um choramingo entretanto, urn balbucio de Idbios magoados, um breve espasmo. A claridade envergonhada da manhdpenetradesajeitada peloteto de folhas de zinco esburacadas, pelos rombos nas pafedes de placas de outdoors. Mas, é notumo ainda o barraco. A chupeta suja, de bico rasgado, que o bebe mordiscava, escapuliu rolando por sob a irmAzinha de tres anos, que, a seu lado, suga o polegar corn a insaciedade de quando mamava nos seios da mde. 0 peitinho chiou o sono inteiro e ela tossiu e chorou, porque o cobertorfino, muxibento, que ganharam dos crentes, o irmdozinho de seis anos enrolou-se nele. 0 colchdo-de-mola-de-casal onde se aninham sobreveio numa tarde Omida, manchas escuras desenhando o pano rasgado, locas vomitando po, aboletado no teto de uma kombi de carreto, BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

vencendo toda a Estrada de Itapecerica, em-desde a Vila Andrade ate o Jardim Irene, quando viviam corn o Birola, homem born, ele. Uma vez levou a meninada no circo, palhacos, cachorro ensinado roupinha-de-bale, macaco de velocipede, domador chicoteando leao desdentado em-dentro da jaula, cavalos destros, trapezista, equilibrista, pipoca, engolidor de espadas, maca-do-amor, mocas de mail:), algodao-doce, senudor de gente, pirulito, sorvete-depal ito. Al comecou a abusar da mais velha, agora de-maior, masna epoca treze anos. Enfezada, despejou alcool nas partes, riscou cabeca-de-tbsforo, o fogo ardeu a vizinhanca, salvou os filhos, mas o tal, aquele, ern sonhos de crack torrou, carvao indigente. Dele herdou o menino, oito anos, seu escarro, hominho. Ano passado, ou em-antes, ignora, estourou a coceira, as costas, a barriga, as pemas, uma ferida so, coitado. Intemado, as enfermeiras nem urn pio ouvirarn, reclamacaozinha alguma, uma graca. Levou bronca do doutor, Absurdo, falou, Irresponsavel, berrou, disse para a mulher assistente-social acompanhar, Sum, ela nem as caras deu. Pensam, é facil, mas for-gas no tern mais, embora seus trinta e cinco anos, boca desbanguelada, os ossos estufados os olhos, a pele ruca, arquipelago de pequenas Olceras, a cabeca zoeirenta. E lendeas explodem nos pixains encipoados das criancas e ratazanas procriam no estomago do barraco e percevejos e pulgas entrelacam-se aos fiapos dos cobertores e baratas guerreiam nas gretas. Já pediu-implorou para a de treze ajudar, mas, rueira, some, dias e noites. Viu ela certa vez carro ern carro filando trocado num farol da Avenida Francisco Morato. Quando o frio aperta, aparece. A de onze, ajuizada, cria os menorzinhos: carrega eles para comer na sopa-dos-pobres, leva eles para tomar banho na igreja dos crentes, troca a roupa deles, toma conta direitinho, a danisca. E faz eles dormirem, contando invencionices, coisas havidas e acontecidas, situacOes entrefaladas no aqui e au. Faz gosto: no breu, a vozinha dela, encarrapichada no ursinho-depelucia que naufragava na enxurrada, encavema-se sonambula ouv idos adentro, inoculando sonhos ate mesmo na mae, que geme baixinho num canto, o branco-dos-olhos arreganhado sob o vai-vern de um corpo magro e tatuado, mais urn nunca antes visto.

10.0 quequeruma mulher Ajeitando no nariz os Oculos de massa preta, a haste esquerdacolada corn esparadrapo, as lentes de vidro arranhadas, a mulher penetra corn vagar na pequenacozinha, dirige-se a pia, destorce corn dificuldade a torneira atipoiada corn elastico e barbante entrelacados e lava urn copo-de-requeijao, Frajola persegue o Piu-Piu no decalque. 0 marido, que sentado a mesa levava a boca uma xicara de café corn a mao direita, enquanto a esquerda segurava aberto um livro, ligeiramente inclinado para proporcionar foco a vista astigmatizada, assusta-se, eleva os olhos, Aconteceu alguma coisa? Arrastando pantufas esgarcadas, a sola encarocada, a mulher aproxima-se da mesa, toma a garrafa term ica, despeja um gole de café no copo-de-requeijao, rasga urn pedaco de pa° frances dorm ido, lambuza-o de margarina, volta a recostar-se na pia. 0 que que voce ester lendo al?, indaga, displicente, aconchegando a mao esquerda sob o xale que abraca a cam isola de alga. Ele, descansando o volume sobre as pemas, Microfisica

do Poder... do Foucault... Achei num sebo... na Joel° Mendes, justifica-se, enfarado. Os dedos da maodireita varrem os farelos que se esparramaram pela toalha axadrezada, tentando edificar um montinho &rico. Por que... por que quevoceja esta acordada

a essa hora? Ela entreabre o basculhante da janela que da para a rua e observa, resguardados pela luz andmica do poste, os primeiros passageiros do onibus que daqui a pouco comeca a circular. Mastiga o pedaco de pao, empurra-o corn o resto do café. Virase e, como se numa sala-de-aula, calibra urn ponto imaginario na parede contraria, na altura da caixa-de-forca cinza, a meio BRA7_ZIL -APRIL 2002

caminho entre o armario de aco vermelho enferrujado e a geladeiraamarela manca

ontem de noite eu vinha vindo do colegio o transit° estava tudo parado ali na altura do Limoeiro um monte de viatura da policia sirene ligada uma confustio danada e eu sozinha morrendo de medo sei la a gente não dá conta do que passa pela cabeca nessa hora ai (0 marido enche a xicara de cafe, acende urn cigarro, uma lavape escala sua map aberta)

comecei a ouvir o major tiroteio pensei em fugir mas ainda corria o risco de ter o carro roubado japensou? ai tirei a chave da ignicab deiteinapoltrona de brucos um medo de morrer aui sozinha e entab aconteceu uma coisa engracada parec4 que eu desmaiei viajei no tempo sei la me vi de novo mocinha corn meus colegas do grupo-de-jovens numa excurstio nem imagino pra onde e alguem tocava vioMo e cankivamos e riamos e ai come caram a buzinar atras de mim e assustada dei urn pulo liguei o carro engatei a primeira e vi os soldados na calcada arrastando pelas pernas dois sujeitos ensangiientados deviam estar mortosjá evarios outros sentados na guia so de ecas mdos na nuca parecia cena de fl/me americano (0 marido desc uza as pemas, esmaga a guimba no pires, agoniado confer as horas no relogio da parede.) A mul er pastoreia os olhos sonados por entre a fumaca azulada ue se dispersa proximo a lampada de quarenta velas acesa. A vizin anca espreguica-se uma discussao, logo abortada uma porta que se fecha urn radio ligado cachorros que latem a porta de aco descerrada da padaria passos rapidos na calcada um bebe que esgoela uma sirene, longe "Policia?" o onibu encosta, os passageiros apressam-se, arranca

e eu decidi que n o quero mais essa vida pra mim nab ndo quero (0 marido, impa iente, "Vou acabar perdendo a hora",

Mas... cansei nada vale tanto sacrificio trabalhar trabalhar trabalhar pra que? a gente uase nab se ye mais nab sai pra lugar nenhum quanto tempo te que voce nem me procura acende outro cig rro, levanta-se, caminhana direcao damulher, E... é verdade... gente precisa sentar pra acertar umas coisas...

Mas... sincerame te... ndo acho... assim... que as coisas estej am tdo ruins assim n -o... o problema é qu voce se contenta corn qualquer coisa pra voce de qualquer jeito ester born tenta envolve la nos bracos marinhos de sua blusa descosturada, el se desvencilha, volta-se para o basculhante, la fora bocejos d dia.

sabia que estou devendo de novo no banco? sabe porque? porque o que a gente ganha no dapravencer o mes e o pior é que a gente nee° consegue sair dessa merda estamos cada vez mais Voce esta faland° alto... Ansioso, o pastortalemao arranha a porta dacozinha, choraminga. Na contra-luz, o Irosto lusco-fusco da mulher.

Fala baixo... os rneninos... vdo acabar acordando... Ca/ma... ca/ma o que? e tou cansada ntio esta vendo? estou cansada muito cansada c nsada de viver corn um urn lunatic° que a rinica coisa que der valo navida é a esses livros que s6 servem pra encher a casa de fungos e adoecer as criancas s6 pra isso e a esse esse esse estilo de v da essa essa °Nab pela pobreza ah tenha paciencia o que a dez anos me fascinava hoje me aborrece Mas deixa eu falar e ndo acabei ainda nab deixa eu desabafar eu nunca . falo As criancas... va acabar acordando as 31


,fico segurando as pontas aqui dentro de casa nem pra trocar uma lcimpada voce serve claro voce tern muitas qualidades é fiel honesto trabalhador mas uma mu/her uma mu/her precisa mu/to mais do que isso mu/to mais Mas o problema o problema e que cheguei a conclusdo uma conclusdo terrivelvoce no fundo no fundo e e um inconformista conformado no fundo voce quer e continuar dando suas aulinhas porque dentro da sala-de-aula ninguem te enche o saco ninguem te questiona Mas essa nossa pobreza é uma bela desculpa pra suafalta de empenho de ousadia de coragem voce esconde sua covardia a sua falta de vigor atras do seu inconformismo intelectual como se o mundo estivesse morrendo de medo da sua indignacdo ah ah ah Mas uma mu/her uma mu/her precisa de mu/to mais do que isso bem mais meu caro voce nao ye o futuro meu amor porque voce ndo tern futuro Mas voce nab entende nunca entendeuvoce acharealmenteque avida se resume a isso morar mal dever pra todo mundo nunca ter dinheiro pra comprar uma coisinha diferente pra corner fora viajar Mas C so ficar aqui en//ado dentro de casa tensa na hora de sair tensa na hora de chegar rezando pra que nossos filhos nab se envolvam corn a bandidagem do bairro nao se metam corn drogas 0 marido acende outro cigarro, espana as c6deas que sobraram agarradas a roupa, junta os livros, coloca os oculos, desculpa eu eu ma° quis te ofender Ndo ofendeu ndo... C que eu estou eu estou tcio cansada Eu sei... Voce esta precisando tirar umas ferias... descansar um pouco... nao estou precisando é de ah ndo adianta voce ndo ia entender ncio adianta escancara a porta que da para um quintalzinho acimentado, uma aragem fria e o cachonn entram estabanados, a mulher agasalhase, ele preme seu brag° corn carinho, Tern que ter forca... persistencia... eu estou ,ficando velha o tempo estci esgotando afaga a cabeca do pastor-alemao, que, agitado, aguarda uma ordem). Precisa lavar 1 a. fora... olha o cheiro! Quieto! Quietot Ela tranca a porta da sala e apoiando-se na macaneta ouve o rangido do porta° o motor do chevette caes que latem passos na calcada vozes um 6nibus que arranca o rangido do portao o motor do chevette vozes ?quem e esse homem, meu deus, cara gorda ponte-movel barrigade-barri I roupas desleixadas sem amigos que gasta as manhas de sabado lavando o cachorro e o quintalzinho latinhas de cerveja e tira-gostos espetados no palito que gasta as tardes de domingo vendo futebol na televisao latinhas de cerveja e tira-gostos espetados no palito e que dorme em sua cama e que é o pai de seus filhos e que meu deus já no reconhece quem é esse homem quern?


11. Chacina no 41 Bern dado, de baixo para cima, o chute que atingiu as costelas a mostra do vira-lata catapultou-o para o meio da rua, onde, aterrizando meio de banda, escapuliu ganindo, sem atentar tamanha crueldade. S6 emp6s escapar ligeiro por entre valas fetidas e becos sonolentos, escuridOes e clareiras, é que, encorajando-se, tornou ao reves. Já n inguem flan havia extorquindo a manha nascitura. Parou, resfo I egante, o coracaozinho as corcovas, estendeu-se sobre o corpo tremulo, a confusa recem-lembranca. Por que fora agredido? Arfando, a lingua lambe o pelo duro, amarelo-sujo, tenta escoimar os doloridos. Por quern fora agredido? Os dentes agudos mordiscam ao !du, a cata de invisiveis pulgas. Exausto, a cabeca pende sobre as patas esticadas, cerra os olhos, o rabo sossega, suspira. Aos poucos, os saquinhos coloridos assentam no fundo do caleidoscopio. Cam inhava, entreabrindo cortinas da noite a procura de seu dono, orelhas afiladas, todo prontidao, porque sabia da Vila Clara, varias vezes enxotado, pontapes, baldes de agua quente, pedras, bombinhas, foguetes, porretes, ate tiros, sim senhor, ate tiros!, quando, prOximo ao sear) onde os pes do povo forrozeiro levantam finas nuvens de cimento, avistou a cena intrigante: debaixo do poste, como que dorm issem, tres pessoas deitadas, quase amontoadas umas junto as outras. Cauteloso, chegou mais perto, avaliou. Bebados flan se encontravam, disso entendia, e muito. Paciente, acompanhava madaleno a via-sacra do seu dono, engastalhando-se em botequins, enroscando-se em arvores, a coluna curvada sob o saco-de-estopa abarrotado de latas-de-aluminio macetadas. 0 que exalava dos corpos era azedume de suor embaralhado ao doceamargo do medo. Pedacos de chumbo ricochetearam na parede da oficina-mecanica arrancandolascas do enorme Ayrton Senna grafitado--mais tarde, a policia tecnica colheria vinte e tres capsulas calibre 380. 0 sangue borbotava das varias perfuracOes na pele formando no chao uma mancha vermelhoescura que, espraiando-se pela calcada, descaia na direcao da guia, quando reduzia-se a dois debe is fiozinhos que, mal alcancavam a rua descalca, morriam absorvidos pela terra. Concentrado, buscava reconhecer os rostos, dois dos nes eram garotos ainda, quando sentiu a pontada na altura do pulmao, quase pos o pouco que havia comido para fora, recolheu o rabo, baixou as orelhas, disparou, suspendendo-se no breu. Assustado, arregalou os olhos, ja se ouviam os barulhos que acompanham o sol, pos-se de pe, a pata direita traseira cocou a orelha carcin6mica, tinha que achar seu dono que gostava de conversar corn ele, acariciar seu corpo despelado, beijar seu focinho, brincar de cocegas, faze-lo de travesseiro, que dividia os restos de comida corn ele. Dia desses, refestelou-se nagrama do canteiro central de uma avenida, a tarde, nunca mais o viu. La ficou apenas o saco de estopa abarrotado de latas de aluminio macetadas. 12. Touro A lua nova, no signo de Cancer, pede recolhimento, reflexao. Depois da agitacao dos ultimos dias, é hora do ritmo lento e continuo. Aqueles que se deixarem levar pelas emocOes podem se arrepender. Estao condenadas todas as atitudes radicais. 0 agrupamento dos planetas em Touro, signo da terra e da posse, tende a levar a exageros, mas a energia lunar acalma os animos. Luiz Ruffato, the author, was born in Cataguases, state of Minas Gerais, in 1961. He has three books published: Historias de Remorsos e Rancores (1998), "(os sobreviventes)" (2000) and eles eram muitos cavalos (2001) all by Boitempo Editorial. You can contact the author at This excerpt was taken from the initial pages of eles eram muitos cavalos, a book nominated in 2002 for the Jabuti, Brazil's most important literary prize. You can contact Boitempo Editorial at or calling 11-3875-7285. BRAZZIL - APRIL 2002


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Rio Deal I was pretty sure that within a few seconds of stepping off the bus that I would be robbed, shot, kidnapped and sold into the white slave trade or worse—made to drink warm beer. PHILIP BLAZDELL

I don't really need to write anymore because you already know everything there is to know about the city. I could just leave a few pages blank and then close with a witty anecdote, preferably about beer, and everyone would be happy. Or I could drag out all the old clichés about the marvelous city, the favelas and the beautiful women and fill several pages in this way before closing with the same witty anecdote. It seems that everyone knows Rio whilst Rio remains known to so few. For my own personal travels I had tended to shy away from Rio, as I believed that any place that so many people consistently raved about would have nothing of interest to me far too fake and touristy I thought. I was also sick of people in Europe thinking that Brazil was Rio (and conversely Rio was Brazil) and I didn't want to propagate these ideas further. But after a year in Brazil and constant advice from my colleagues in the Northeast not to go there and after reading sufficient Machado de Assis, I decided that enough was enough and bought a bus ticket there for the two-day trip from Fortaleza to Rio. [fa th ing is worth doing, it's worth doing the hard way. In the year of 1502 Andre Goncalves slipped out of Portugal on a very secret mission. His ultimate aim was to confirm the existence of the fabled land that Pedro Alvares Cabral claimed he had discovered (reportedly by accident, as he'd been sent on an expedition to India) a few years earlier. Goncalyes found, perhaps by chance, the bay today known as Guanabara, which he mistook for the mouth of a

mighty river. River being Rio, in Portuguese and the month being January (Janeiro) he brightly concluded: Rio de Janeiro! The name stuck and today perhaps it is one of the most evocative and famous cities in the world. Some historians claim that the first building in Rio de Janeiro was built in an area known today as Flamengo. Nothing much came out of it though, and the Portuguese, typically, did not give much importance to their finding for a while. This changed when the French decided to set their cloven foot there in 1555 with Admiral Villegaignon who landed to found the superbly named Antarctic France, a colony of French Calvinists. The Portuguese were not very happy with this idea, and thus sent Mem de Sá, who, according to legend, managed to expel the French in a mere two days. He left Rio and sailed back home, quite sure he had taught everybody a lesson. He should have known better, though. The tropical beaches and welcoming climate had left too much ofa good impression on the French, as they have on many modern day visitors, and they soon came back for more. In 1564, Estacio de Sa (a nephew of Mem de SO was dispatched from Portugal. It took him a full two years, and much blood shed, to finally get the area back to the Portuguese' hands. Rio only started to grow faster in 1690, with the discovery of gold in neighboring state of Minas Gerais. As the state was landlocked, Rio became the destination port of the expeditions, and suddenly started to attract unprecedented attention. The French attacked Rio in 1710, and BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

again 1711, this time with a large fleet. Their endearing idea was to sack the city, and extract a ransom. Both times they were repelled—as should always be done with the French and the city began to grow in importance and wealth. Rio eventually became the second capital of Brazil, after Salvador in Bahia and when, in the early nineteenth century, Europe was being ravaged by Napoleon, Dom Joao VI, the Portuguese monarch, packed up and fled with his wife and the whole court to Rio. This increased the city population from 50 to 65 thousand in one year, and 70 thousand by the next. Although the Portuguese royalty was not exactly a model of sophistication, they did bring with them civilized habits, like using silverware and lavish count entertainment. Other habits, like taking regular baths, were still regarded as something that only the Indians would do. Locals did their best to please the sovereign, and taking advantage of this, Dom Joao VI often paid his debts by giving nobility titles or awards. These were heady times, which Machado de Assis captured so well. However, Dom Joao never real ly took to life in the tropics and as soon as things quieted down he moved back to Portugal leaving his son Pedro in charge of things. This same Pedro would later declare the country independent and cause his father considerably pains when he declared himself Emperor. Aside from a few obvious flaws he was a good emperor, but quite a ladies man. His extra-marital affairs were common knowledge (Marquesa de Santos, became almost as famous as his wife, Austrian-born Empress Leopoldina). He brought about major improvements to the city with access to gaslights, plumbing, a sewage system, telephone, telegraph and a railway linking the city to the state of Minas Gerais. The first Republic was born with a military coup in 1889 led by Marshal Deodoro da Fonseca and Rio remained the capital of Brazil until the year of 1960, when President Jusce lino Kubitschek (JK to his friends) inaugurated what was his dream vision of a model capital (I'd hate to think what his nightmares were like). The federal district was then transferred to Brasilia, a city oddly shaped like an airplane. Today, however, Rio remains the cultural capital of the country and, perhaps, of South America itself. I arrived in Rio's busy central bus station late Thursday night. I had been traveling a long time and was feeling travel sore and extremely apprehensive. After all the reams oftext I had read on Rio over the years, and the huge amount of anecdotal information that I had picked up from other travelers I was pretty sure that within a few seconds of stepping off the bus that I would be robbed, shot, kidnapped and sold into the white slave trade or worse—made to drink warm beer. There is no other city to my mind that BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

has such an anecdotal reputation as Ri and it is hard not to get sucked in som; times and believe the stories; perha • s this is part of the city's allure—the bett,r than even chance of something terribl happening to you on which you can din out for the rest ofyour days: 'Did I tell yo about the time 1 got attacked by a poss ofmad machete wielding maniacs in Rio . ' I took a deep breath, stepped off th bus, adjusted my sunglasses and went t • look for my bag. By the time! had made m way through the crowds to the side oft bus (after having to fight past three doze tearful families who were standing aroun hugging long lost offspring—I wasn t sure if they were happy or sad that the r children had returned—it was all terribl emotional in the way that only Brazilia s can achieve) the wiry baggage handl r already had my backpack in his arms an was looking for its rightful owner. H lifted it onto my back with a groan and to!. me I was setting myself up for a ye uncomfortable old age if I insisted i walking around with three tons on m back. 'Enjoy Rio,' he called after me as ! pushed through the crowds. So far, s good. I was feeling quite good till I realize that I hadn't got a single real to my n. and and had to go to a cash point. 'I a definitely going to be mugged now,' thought as I wandered around rather ai lessly looking for an ATM. Great! I foun a friendly policeman (a common sight i Rio's bus terminals) who was all gun an knobbly looking baton and I asked hi where the nearest ATM was. He smile and laughed, 'I am bored standing he e looking at all these beautiful girls, let e show you'. On the way he gave me a potted hi• tory of Rio, a rundown on the local foo ball results and a guide to Western ph losophy, which was both concise an different in its outlook. Cash safely tucke away he led me to the taxi rank and told e it was going to be the perfect night for a cold beer. Everything in Rio eventual leads to a cold beer, and if the statisti are to be believed women make up t e bulk of the drinking-classes. It was, aft r all, going to be my kind of city. Taxis have always been a problem f me and I seem to attract deranged ta drivers like moths to aflame. I thought: I am bound to be kidnapped now, taken 'I a cruise round the city to bump up t cost, taken to a favela or at least robb - • and made to listen to crap cheesy Bran ian pop, it's bound to happen, it might s well be now—let's get it over with. driver took my bags and locked them the trunk ofhis battered taxi. I showed hi the address and he nodded, slipped t car into gear and took off so fast I almo t got whiplash (Cariocas seem unable • drive g anything less than breakne•k speed—it is perhaps the most dangero s aspect of Rio). As we rushed dangerously from la e

to lane the driver asked if it was my first time in Rio. 'Yes', I replied nervously with one hand covering my eyes, 'was I in a hurry? If not we could take a cruise round the long way and see a few of the sights on the way. The price would be the same whatever,' the driver reassured me whilst performing a turn against the rush hour traffic with only one hand on the wheel and the other making an obscene gesture to a passing girl of heartbreaking loveliness. He was good to his word, but I saw nothing of the sights he pointed out as my eyes were firmly closed in fear of an impending crash as we carved up bus after bus. The tour complete; he eased his car across four lanes of oncoming traffic, hand brake turned into a side street and checked again the address I had given him. 'Its near Pao de Acucar' I told him trying to sound vaguely confidant as we screeched up in front of a beautifully modern glass fronted building. 'Here we are' he smiled, 'enjoyed the ride?' I smiled , waited a few moments for my stomach to catch up. 'I don'tthinkthis is the right place, my friend told me it was in front of Pao de Acucar and I don't see the supermarket anywhere'. The taxi driver took a long hard look at me and burst out laughing. He lent out of the window and pointed with a chubby finger to the great craggy mountain opposite. 'Know what that is?' he asked almost choking with laughter. I blushed, 'That's Pao de Acucar? The real one. I thought I was looking for the supermarket ofthe same name' . This, the driver told me, was the funniest thing he had ever heard and he almost let me have the ride for free. Almost.... Being a Carioca Dauro was thrilled to see me and dragged me immediately offto his house. Getting into his house was no mean feat and even Tom Cruise would have thought twice about it. Dauro had a bunch of keys about the size ofmy backpack and worked them in the various locks with a degree of proficiency that I was never to achieve. Within two minutes we were sitting in his apartment admiring the view—the quickest I ever managed with the keys was something closer to a few hours. 'How was the trip, long?, you must be tired, oh well, never mind, let's go out now on the town; we have wasted far too much valuable drinking time already'. Although Dauro is not a carioca (according to linguists, the term carioca, as locals call themselves, is not derived from the word Rio, as in carioca. It is actually a Tupi Indian term (kara'i oca), roughly meaning, "white house", or "house of whites" That' show the Indians called the houses built by the Portuguese. For some reason, eventually the Portuguese started thinking of themselves as cariocas), he shares their almost devotional love of 35

beer, which to me seems a perfectly rational attitude to adopt especially if you are forced to travel by taxi in Rio (I have a similar view of life in Argentina, but beer is never strong enough after a rush hour taxi drive in downtown Buenos Aires). Forty five minutes later we bounced off a bus in the wildly dangerous looking and decadent neighborhood of Arco do Teles. It was a maze of winding cobbled streets packed with bars, music and strobing lights. It was not that there was an inherent tension in the air just that there was just a great potential for something to happen. We dodged around beefy doormen and signs which read: entrance R$ 8 (US$ 3.40), consumption R$ 20 (US$ 8.50)—specialprice for women and Happy Hour every night. It was like Covent Garden for adults, everyone had a hustle and if you didn't then somewhere along the line you had gone badly wrong. Even the ubiquitous street kids were in on the act and had boxes wrapped in Christmas paper which they were shaking for change, 'Hey, mister Gringo, want to be my Santa Claus?' One particularly dirty little girl, who looked like she had stepped straight out of Dickens took a shine to my shaved head and followed me through the streets rubbing greasy fingers over my head till Dauro shooed her away with a kindly word. Drunk men in designer suits swaggered around eyeing the mini skirted girls whilst transvestites in sheer see through dresses played the crowd with humor, ifnot grace. We eventually found a table and a will ing waiter, cold beers started to appear with frightening regularity. Some friends arrived. I was now feeling exhausted, hungry and more than anything wanted to go home. To go to the toilet I had to explain to an over developed bouncer in my desperately poor Portuguese that I didn't really want to enter the club, just use the bathroom. He made me repeat myself several times; I could see in his eyes that he found my pleadings amusing. The club was packed from wall to wall with hot sweaty beautiful people all grinding their hips to Madonna, drinking beer and living the fabled hedonistic carioca lifestyle—I was too exhausted to care. Rio is famous for its frantic pace of life— each day feels like the end of the world with everyone trying to squeeze extra minutes out of an already stretched day. I just felt tired. We cruised from bar to restaurant to bar to snack bar till it all became one alcoholic fueled binge and events began to blur into one long party. Very early the next day, with only a small hangover, we rushed to the airport to meet my girlfriend. The sun was just beginning to make its way towards the peak of Pao de Acucar as we rushed to 36

find the bus stop and pick up a bunch of flowers. The mountain backlit by the first rays of the sun looked like a scene from Close Encounters of the Third Kind and I kept expecting alien space ships to wiz past us—stranger things have happened in Rio I am told and we were so busy gawping at the magnificent view that we nearly missed the bus—which would have been a disaster as Saskia had already predicted that we would forget to meet her, and had to chase the bus for two blocks before we finally got it to stop and let us climb on board. The ride out to the ultra modern airport was lovely, we screamed by (at typical carioca velocity) past great architectural triumphs of buildings, which would have not looked out of place in Paris or Vienna, a huge derelict warehouse earmarked for the site ofthe new Guggenheim museum, and even a naval shipyard where we could just make out the black hulls of submarines glistening in the early morning tropical sun. It was paradise personified for me—all the bustle of the city within a palm fronded framework ofhedonism. You could imagine this as being the preferred holiday resort of immortals. We arrived with plenty of time to kill and sat complacently eatingpelo dequeijo and drinking coffee waiting for the flight

to arrive. Of course we were in the wrong terminal and when we arrived, breathless from running the length of the surprisingly long airport to the other terminal, Saskia was already sitting there wearing an 'I told you so look on her face'. The birthday flowers cheered her up and once we were in a taxi and heading across town all was forgiven. It's difficu.ltto lwarry thing but scared in a Rio taXl. ' Cristo Redentor Later that day we took a bus across town to one of Rio's most enduring landmarks. Brazil may not be Rio and Rio may not be Brazil but the statue of Christ the Redeemer, which looks like it's about to bungee jump down onto the city from the summit of Corcovado, is most definitely Rio and essential to everyone who visits the city. Some people say that Christ has amelancholic expression on his face as he

looks down on to the city that typifies both the epitome and decay of the urban dream, but, personally, I feel the look is one of awe and I challenge anyone not to feel similarly as they stand high above the city and look down on its heaving, sun baked streets. The antique, and endearingly creaky cog railway, which wound its way through the calm greenness of Tijuca forest—the world's largest suburban forest which was entirely replanted at the time of Dom Pedro II—dropped us 122 steps from the top and we joined the throngs of sun burnt tourists in the hot and sticky climb to the top. I complained constantly all the way up—about the heat, about the tourists and about the tacky tourist shops that lined our route. But, standing on top ofthe Corcovado Mountain, under the outstretched arms of the statue of Christ the Redeemer, I realized that I was in one of the most wonderful places in the world. I looked down on Rio, spread out in all its doubleedged beauty. Part of the city was edged by the white sand ofCopacabana, Ipanema and other less famous beaches whilst elsewhere there were mountains and slums. The First and Third Worlds come together here, and the result is extravagant and undeniable. The only sound we heard was the constant 'click click click' of cameras. We watched line after line of tourists ape the pose of the thoughtful Christ and after having had their picture taken then rush over to marvel at the sublime view down to Guanabara bay— a view, which no matter how cynical you are, is indeed one of the most thrilling and compelling views in the world. It is a view that redefines superlatives and defies comparison. It almost makes you cry. Below me, lost in a heat haze was the marvelous city. A city with 6 million inhabitants where, in 1998, police killed more than 700 people. Compare this to New York, which has a population of 19 ;million, where police killed less than 30. A , city whose fabled football stadium holds close to 200,000 fanatical devotees ofthe beautiful game; a city which has just opened a university in the largest favela and where rumor has it that legs, arms and feet are regularly washed up on the trendy beaches of Leblon and Ipanema. A city Whose beaches, you are lead to believe by well meaning journalists who never leave the bar of their 5 star hotels, resemble Hamburger Hill on a particularly bad day. But as a tourist, and a pretty hapless one at that, it seemed unlikely that I would ever come across more trouble then a bad case of sun burn and the odd hangover. Rio may be a lot of things to a lot of people, but it certainly didn't feel dangerous or ferocious. In fact, most of the time, it felt quite quaint and homely. On Sunday, Dauro took us to 'pray at the Church of the Cariocas', more cornBRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

monly known as Ipanema beach. A beach, which a recent article in London's Guardian called 'the ultimate in see-and-beseen beaches' and then continued with 'the boys and girls of Ipanema beach are visions of bronzed loveliness in the tiniest swimwear known to man.' A few days later under the grabbing headline of 'Rio turning into a gianttoilet bowel' the paper proclaimed that 'the sea near Copacabana and Ipanema has been regularly marked with red streaks of algae, caused by high levels of feces in the water', and that, 'on the beaches there were "black tongues"— dark stains in the sand from various types of pollution'. Which lead me to worry for the health of the bronzed lovelies we hoped to meet and the consistency of the Guardian's journalism. In actual fact there was some truth in the article as far as the pollution is concerned, the beaches are generally considered polluted and unsuitable for swimming and the only people we saw brave the waters were pale foreigners with lurid beach shorts and pealing noses. I was put off by the large oilrig like construction that was lurching menacingly offshore and had something to do with major subway repairs. The beach itself, and this I am sure is heresy, was more than a little disappointing—in this case don't believe the media hype. The pale sand that stretched some distance along the coast was packed,

almost cheek to cheek with cariocas— fam ilies, young girls eyeing the young guys, guys eyeing girls, old ladies well past their prime eyeing the young bloods and children with bucket and spades under the watchful care of empregadas (servants). There was no shade, no bars on the beach and not really enough room to stretch out and take in the scene. It was the antithesis of a lovely beach and Saskia and I kept sneaking glances at each other as if to say—is this it? The biggest shock was that apart from Dauro, Saskia and I the beach was free of tanned gods and goddesses and there wasn't a single tiny bikini on show (I know—I walked most of the length of the beach looking for one). In fact, most looked dispiritingly modest and wouldn't have even made my grandmother blush. Another popular media myth crumbled to dust in front of us. It was all very disheartening and felt like Blackpool with sun and not the paradise I had been lead to believe. Paradise, quite clearly, is in the Northeast. We soon fell into the rhythm of the city spending our mornings walking the tourist route (Rio must have one of the world's highest densities of LP guide books in the world), having a fruit juice and a pastel for lunch from a road side bar and then the afternoon lazing around with the papers before a few bottles of wine with friends. This naturally was fol-

lowed by a long serious discussion of literature and politics with Dauro and then heading off into the night to a decadent bar in Lapa to dance the night away to Samba or to sit in a beach side bar with friends from the local university and talk about our collective hopes and dreams over lavishly fried fish until the sun came up and the frantic activity began again. The days, short and hedonistic as they were, were the halcyon days ofmy time in Brazil. On our last day in Rio we took the cable car up to the summit of the craggy looking Pao de Acucar to look down once again on the marvelous city, which had done its best to befriend us over the last few months. On this particular day the city was lost in a haze of wispy white cloud. For all our patience we were rewarded with only faint glimpses of the city below. Rio remained enigmatic to the last and that is perhaps the real fascination ofthe marvelous citythat will drag me back for many years to come. Philip Blazdell is English by birth, a scientist by training and a traveler by nature. He has traveled extensively in Brazil and is a regular contributor to numerous magazines and Web pages. He can be contacted at or




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One month after my abdominal operation, it gives me much pleasure to announce that I am back in shape. It was a trip to hell, days with my wrists tied to a bed, to stop me from pulling out the tubes, catheters, and probes stuck into my body. I was saved from craziness by my wife, Barbara, whom I would give three Nobel Prizes. She took good care of me, washed me, cleaned me, dressed me. And almost got sick of fatigue in the process. Many thanks to the readers who sent e-mails of good wishes, including Zeumar, who also asked why her American husband gets hurt when she answers "It is indifferent to me," when he asks whether she would like to go to some live theater, or the movies. Dear Z., the term you want to use—and I understand you—is immaterial, not indiferente because the latter implies you don't care. Erasmino asks me how you tell apart cozy meaning aconchegado, and a cover for the teapot, abafador. Sorry, E., but languages are full ofthings like this. Like in Portuguese banana, which is a fruit but is also a description of not firm, and even a kind of rude gesture. Another reader asks me whether the pronunciation of volley, rajada, is volei as they say in Brazil, or volei as it should be correctly pronounced. This is one of many English terms that Brazilians, in their teenage wisdom, think they know better than anybody else. Clara asked what is the difference between pre-owned and second-hand. My dear C, this is a simple marketing gimmick, a trick to push away the idea of usado. It has no difference, it is segunda mei°, na dura. Lozenge caught the eye of D.F., who asks: is it the same as losango? Yes, it is. Only in English it refers not so much to a geometrical figure but, more familiarly, to an ordinary shape, like that of a game space, such as a diamond, a baseball field. It is also a little piece of medicated candy, like a eucalyptus drop. Poached bothered Arlindo S. Well, it has several meanings, among which a poached egg, which in "proper" Portuguese is ovo escalfado, but called in Brazil "ovo poche", a French term. The other poach is a verb—invadir para roubar, como furtar frutas, frangos, cabritos, etc. For Henrique K. M., who works 38

English for

BrallICE Return to the Daily Grind What is the difference between pre-owned and second-hand? This is a marketing simple gimmick, a trick to push away the idea of used. WILSON VELLOSO

as a caddy in a golf course, this word is a bit of a mystery. Atendente de golfista would be my translation. It is also a little (tin) box to keep tea. Another form of caddy is a colloquialism, a familiar abbreviation for Cadillac, the automobile. (Caddy is usually a car that has seen better years.) Console yourselves, gentle Brazilian readers. Americans also screw up their language. Specially when they try to be scholarly. Take gender instead of sex. Pure poppycock. Gender is a grammatical term, for words. Words have gender, but people and animals have sex. It is not the same thing. Sea is a word usually described as "feminine". And giraffe, usually thought of as masculine (big animals are all masculine), but the sex may be either. Grammatically, the gender of all these , words in English is usually neutral—described with it without an idea of sex. But you can, and it is not incorrect, to say of a cat "Her name is Jellybeans." Or, of a horse, "He is 10 years old and still wonderful." People don't have that kind of choice. Teresa is a feminine name, usually reserved for ladies and other women. But a gay guy may call himself Therese. The name is of the feminine gender, but the guy still is he. Because that is his sex. It is not a question of choice or whim. Another pretty stupid error in English is homophobic. This word is formed with two Greek words, homo, meaning equal, very similar, identical; and phobe meaning that hates, that is afraid of. Like in agoraphobia, "the horror, hate for high places". This homo has nothing to do with the Latin homo which means man. Therefore, homophobic is 100 per1 cent wrong. It really means "somebody who hates, or has horror for, those who are identical, equal, very similar. Exactly the opposite of what was intended. Creating new words, specially when derived from foreign languages, is not easy. You have to know your stuff. This is a horrible pedantism. What the Brazilians callpretensioso or metido a sebo. The author wishes to reiterate his thanks for all those who expressed their concern and send good wishes on occasion of his last "predicament". As usual, e-mail will be welcome at BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

there, in virtual and now mythic isolation, with his wife and two servants, Nivalda and Nastac io. Waiting in the wings, there seems to be a compelling tale about Nastacio, but it never takes off. Nivalda, In some respects, Ped a at least, runs away and finds refuge in the local bordellos. She tells Genu, the owner, Canga is about people that: "My master is dying and the house's relationship to an oppressi been taken over by horrible people performing blood rituals. They tried to kill me force, and how they respond but I got away." its weakening and cessation. While the estate has always been offlimits to the locals, 12-year-old Zigmundo and his dozen or so fellow street urchins BONDO WYSZPOLS I periodically hop over the walls to steal mangoes and pitombas. Despite their Pedra Canga, by Tereza Albue stealth, it seems they're always spotted trans. by Clifford E. Landers and one or two will end up with salt pellets (Green Integer 32, 153 pp., $12.9 in their behinds. paper) Things change, however, and one day there's no resistance. No barking We fold back the first page a dogs, no shots in the butt. Gradually, the begin reading: "On the night Mr. V.1 townsfolk become emboldened and the dying, a storm unlike any ev grounds are invaded. Strange, ant-like seen in these parts flatten people appear and begin carting off evtrees, houses, chicken coup erything that isn't nailed down, and evenPedra Canga: pigsties, and lampposts." tually everything that is. But what really an excerpt: know where we are right awa befell the Vergares? Did they simply vanWe're at the intersection ish without a trace? "Turning on the flashlight, I descended the narrow Faulkner Drive and Garc a In some respects, Pedra Canga is steps and began to inspect the place. It was an Marquez Avenue, in one about people's relationship to an oppresimmense room with damp stone walls that smelled of those backwater towns th sive force, and/how they respond to its mold. Rats, bats, and cockroaches roamed at will. Jorge Am ado drew so well weakening add cessation. The Vergares There was no furniture. In the middle was an enormous books likeShowdown and T slab, thick and rectangular. On the floor, various seem to have had some pact with evil, Violent Land. objects: an ax, a large knife, a hammer, nails, an old maybe with the Devil himself, although trunk, masks, coils of rope. Examining them up close, First published in Brazil it's hard to be sure because many of the I remembered with horrorthe ceremonies described in 1987, Pedra Canga is ju characters are unreliable and the magic the diary and, perhaps from being in the place where what we'd expect from a La realism that pervades the story actually they had been held, I visualized the restoration of the American novel with roots dilutes the impact it makes. Were the past in all its force. I sensed the presence of people magic realism. Tereza A lbu Vergares as bad to the bone as we're led gathering to prepare the ritual, chants, shouts, and a approaches storytelling in a to believe, or are they symbolic of soulconstant murmur that seemed to come from the depths way that recalls Isabel Alle less corporations that maximize profits at of the earth. de, Laura Esquivel, and Islel Terrified, I saw rise from the back of the room a the expense of their workers? It's even shape in a red tunic that came slowly toward me, da P Mon, among others. A possible that Pedra Canga is a parable of holding a large razor-sharp dagger. It looked like a so one slips into her bo sorts about Brazil's own dictatorship, peccary, but its head was human. It guffawed, howled, fairly easily. which was still fresh in everyone's mind and bellowed: water, water, water. I tried to flee, but We find ourselves in a r when Albues wrote her novel. It's hard to my feet seemed nailed to the ground and I had no mote village in Western Br be sure. control over the rest of my body. I heard a buzzing in zil, close to the Bolivian bo Pedra Canga is diverting and enmy ears and suddenly felt so weak that I nearly fainted. der. Fueled by rum and supe grossing, much like an afternoon barbeThen I heard noises on the steps. I focused the light stition, plus lots of local go in that direction and saw Marcola, radiant and dressed cue with friends. It's well written, and in white, with necklaces of the god OxOssi around her sip, the town is populated Clifford Landers has supplied a smooth throat. In a firm voice she ordered me to get up and a colorful cast that ranges fro translation, but whereas some stories linfollow her at once. the psychically-gifted Marc ger for days in the imagination this one To this day I don't know how! managed to carry la to the narrator's rambun does not. We close the covers, and the out her order to the letter... tious grandfather, Ze Garba characters fall silent. I was still trembling when I got home. Since the The latter is a poet and guit light was on in my mother's bedroom, I went to see ist, and also a heavy drinke if she needed anything. I found her sitting in a rocking At the center of the sto Bondo Wyszpolski also heads up chair beside the bed, where Marcola lay in a deep sleep... I asked ifMarcola had left the house in the last is the two-story colonial ma the arts and entertainmentsection of few hours and she thought the question was odd... sion that sits in the middle the Easy Reader, a weekly newspaper How could a person in Marcola's condition getup and the Mangueiral estate, wall based in the South Bay of southern go walking around at night? She... could guarantee that in and guarded by fierce dog California. He can be reached at at no moment had Marcola set foot outside." Ver6nico Vergares has liv d

Evil Pact



Brazilian poets are not well known in America, with the possible exception ofCarlos Drummond de Andrade and JoAo Cabral de Melo Neto, two men worth reading despite the difficulties of achieving an accurate translation (check out, however, TheVintageBookofConpublishers The temporaryWorldPoeny). inform that Sky-Eclipse The back cover ofSkyinforms us that Eclipse "is centered on the play "[Regis] Bonvicino's of sound and syntax, of work is centered on the play of sound and syntax, rhyme and intense of rhyme and intense rhythmic shifts." rhythmic shifts," and to back up this assertion the editors have supplied the BONDO VVYSZPOLSKI reader with a bilingual edition so that we may judge for ourselves. Hailing from urban Sao Paulo, Bonvicino has ten Sky-Eclipse, by Regis books of poetry to his credit, and the work presented here is Bonvicino, various translators (Green Integer drawn from three earlier collections, Ossos de Borboleta 44, 125 pp., $9.95 paper) (ButterflyBones),Ceu-echpse

Bilingual Verse

(Sky-Eclipse), and Outros Poemas (Other Poems). Twelve translators are credited, including poets Michael Palmer and Robert Creeley. The poems are short and impressionistic, as if Bonvicino seeks to capture the moment. Two examples will suffice, the first translated by Dana Stevens, the second by John Milton.

Where I write there's the noise of the city garbage after it's collected being ground there's a lamp a chest of drawers with a mirror and a bed unmade autumn is near the window closed


a sudden fatigue takes charge of the words.

Among motors and noises (dry chirp

Sky-Eclipse and Pedra Canga are the first two Brazilian works published by Green Integer. The publishing house, based in Los Angeles (and Copenhagen), has issued books by an internationallyknown array of prose stylists and poets, including James Joyce, Paul Celan, Knut Hamsun, Robbert Bresson, and Djuna Barnes.

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Unerring Light Like a mythological phoenix, Trio MocotO, rises from the ashes with results that are aflame. BRUCF Gil MAN


he return of Trio MocotO brings to mind the cher shed scenery oftheir first full maturity as well as t e historically important fruits of their early reco dings with Jorge Benjor. More than a compati i le and passionate meeting of colleagues— each with his own voice—both forthright and subt e—Trio MocotO represents a whole movemen . In the late sixties, this electrifying and animat d sound factory created a counterpoint to the cou ry's existence under the regime of a military dict or. And there were those of us who feared that he Trio Mocot6 of those early days might neve again raise its full voice, that the impediment of ti e and fashion may have wrought irreparable dam ge to the musicians, the formidable Brazilian rhyt m machine, who set a new trend in musical style., a new concept for small ensembles, and a new tandard for Sao Paulo night clubs. That we were wrong, and glad to be wrong, became apparent ith the release of Samba Rock. aken as a whole, the music on the new CD is repr sentative of what we have come to expect from Trio MocotO: the sound of exuberance, of happ involvement, and of going-for-broke. The new CD presents an homage to the past and achi ves a maturity that represents a culmination of, ra herthan a contradiction to, theirearlier work. Curi musly, the Mocoto blend still sounds buoyant and ill sounds adventurous. The trio's attitude, and • e that they share with their audience, simultane • usly demonstrates an awareness, or better, a rec nciliation oftradition with a serious embrace of cu ent technology. They know what they want to sa have developed the equipment to say it as they ear it, and are entirely without pretentiousness ir compromise. T ey are the kind of trio that, in short, has the rang of emotion and imagination to sustain interest. T e trio has continued to grow during the past 30 y ars, and this recording, to me, marks yet anot er stage in their mercurial trajectory, which starte • at the Boate Jogral, where chorinho groups, boss -jazz trios, and singers performed romantic tunes Even a cursory glance at the Trio's résumé, will resent, over the course of thirty years, a caree that has twisted and turned over alternately smoo h and rugged terrain, seldom following a predi table path. T e Boate Jogral in Sao Paulo on Rua Avan andava was a haunt for artists, intellectuals, a d musicians. An incubator of new talent, it was Iso where the trio, Fritz Escovao (cuica), Nere Gargalo (pandeiro), and Joao Parahyba (limb drum set) worked as house musicians accomp: flying artists like Cartola, Clementina de Jesus and Nelson Cavaquinho as well as visiting dignitaries like Duke Ellington, Oscar Peterson, " and :arl Hines. A frequent denizen of the club, with horn the trio was remarkably attuned and forge a fruitful alliance and also engaged in furio s rhythmic dialogues, was singer/songwriter Jorge Benjor, who in that era was still known as Jorge Ben. Together they were a loosely-knit cliqu of restless souls with something new and exciti g to tell the world. The initial interaction 41

between guitar player and trio showed signs of an incipient samba-rock style long before the term was coined. Jogral was the bedrock for a groove-infused style that became Benjor' s trademark and established an ineradicable place for Mocoto in the annals of Brazi lian popular music. Says Parahyba, "Jorge started coming to the club where we played, and we started jamming on samba grooves with him. But he had a different way of playing, with a very strong accent, like rock. He used blues chords, and when I played the snare on two and four, he placed his accents together with mine. It was a modernization of samba, and we perceived that we were in the vanguard. We were building a new way to play samba that eventually everyone started calling samba-rock, but which was really more rhythm 'n' blues put into the samba, a kind of samba-blues or samba-rhythm 'n' blues, like samba meets James Brown. Then others, Tim Maia, Caetano, picked up on it because everybody loved Little Richard and James Brown. It was analogous to what happened with hip-hop or using samples at the beginning of techno." Mocoto accompanied Benjor at TV Globo's fourth International Festival of Song in Rio de Janeiro, in 1969, and although only a backing band and basically unknown outside of So Paulo, the trio's authoritative command of their instruments and resourcefully passionate presentation created a maelstrom of excitement and tension. Feeling pressured to announce the, as yet, unnamed trio, the festival director asked who they were. Benjor, knowing the three loved slang and had been commenting on the lovely MocotOs (slang for women's thighs and the domains that lie adjacent) who frequented the Jogral, gave the director a catalytic name: "Trio Mocoto." The following year (1970), Trio MocotO backed Benjor's performance at the International Festival of Recordings and Music Publications (M1DEM) in Cannes, an event organized by the major European record companies to promote and present new talent from all over the world to a select audience of producers and reviewers. Being a festival exclusively for the recording industry, participating artists, as a formality, did not perform encores. After Benjor's set, however, when a standing ovation prevented Benjor and Trio Mocot6 from leaving the stage, an astonished festival director, overriding the stage manager's protest, told the group, "Play. Please, play!" They performed, not one, but six encores, stop42

ping only when one of Benjor's guitar solo ensemble, releasing Muita Zorra! strings broke. After the performance, The album featured guest appearances Andre Midani, the CEO of Philips, con- and compositions by friends like Jorge veyed that, among other famous musi- Benjor, Roberto and Erasmo Carlos, and cians, Ravi Shankar, Ray Brown, and Ivan Lins. The trio toured Italy and Japan Quincy Jones had been in attendance, with Benjor again in 1972, then joined and he invited the group to dinner at an V inicius de Moraes, Toquinho, and exclusive French restaurant, where, upon Marilia Medalha for a series of recordarriving, they were greeted by another ings, a university concert tour, and a two month stint in Mexico. standing ovation. Hints oftheir compositional gifts were Continuing on a tour of Europe and Japan, MocotO next traveled to Rome, revealed on their second LP on RGE in where they performed with French singer 1973, which contained not only one ofthe Marie Laforet and Egberto Gismonti at first moog synthesizer solos recorded in the Teatro Sistina. Backstage after the Brazil - as well as arrangements by the show, a soft spoken Brazilian, who was maestro of Tropicana, Rogerio Duprat, living in Italy to avoid the military dictator's but also a virtuosic cuica performance by censorship, expressed how much he had Fritz of Burt Bacharach's award winning enjoyed their sound and invited them to standard "Raindrops Keep Falling on My play on his upcoming LP—Construedo. Head" from the motion picture Butch Chico Buarque's famous song of exile, Cas,tidy and the Sundance Kid. The al"Samba de Orly," speaks about someone bum confirmed their ability to communiwho is living outside the country, but cate vigorous, unfettered emotion withaches to return even though the situation out ignoring the music's softer and more inside Brazil is exhaustively corrupt. The subtle possibilities. By the mid-seventies, however, the trio's first single, not as a backing band, but as a solo ensemble, was released at music world was experiencing significant this time and featured their voices accom- changes, reflecting, no doubt, the culpanied by bass, guitar, and piano. tural tenor of the times, in which protest "Coqueiro Verde" (Green Coconut), a music predominated. Afro-soul bands romantic samba written by Jovem Guarda that promoted a party atmosphere and composers Erasmo and Roberto Carlos, sang about women, the beach, and celtopped hit parades throughout Brazil, ebrated the beauty ofBrazil were no longer broke preconceived notions about its fashionable. Securing concert and club composers, and displayed the trio's new work became increasingly more difficult as the nightclub circuit seemed to have vision of popular Brazilian music. That the trio's style continued to ex- abandoned the trio, as had the record pand is a process well documented on the labels that had documented their early best of Benjor's early albums: Jorge Ben growth. When samba-rock's ebb in popularity was further accentuated by disco's (1969), Forea Bruta (1970), and Negro Lindo (1971). Their capacity to absorb growing popularity, the trio separated, and execute what Ben wanted while main- each member following his own path. Throughout the eighties, pop-rock taining their own strong individuality is apparent on each of the albums. Forea dominated the Brazilian music marketBrute, however, stands out for the trio's place, only to be followed by waves of authoritative command of their instru- sertaneja and pagode. Fritz studied tenor ments and resourcefully passionate pre- sax and trumpet and occasionally sang in sentation. Recorded in one night, the LP bars for happy hour. Nereu, returned to work with samba presents an abungroups. Jodo, whowent dance of improA TV esti as,09L to work for his family's visation, tracks business, returned to exceeding five Trio Mocoto faz music seriously only in minutes sucesso no Mexico after meeting Croatian length—unconcomposer and producer ventional for Mitar Subotic ("Suba") popular music at in the nineties. that time in BraAlthough Mocozil—and the ento's music had been semble at one of wildly fashionable in its its tight-buttime, there has been a loose emotional significant lag between peaks. its bold origination and In 1971, the rou-mr sulk, ern antic 3 slkern its wider more univerems aNsAng trzu Morato fixerAm ,•nt. trio made their o.". " 72,°'41Z-' 1:"" olt se: r.1:071113t Tra \':.' or' ,..o:t ertl' AZ11;i:L sal acceptance. A guarWale log •••od second foray as a • '.1," ^ ot,44e n



ter-century after the Jogral, radio stations in Sao Paulo rediscovered and started airing "Nao Ad ianta," a track from Mocoto's 1975 LP, which had only been released in Italy, without the group's authorization. In addition, as European DJ's discovered and started sampling Mocoto's music from old vinyl sources, samba-rock emerged as a cult craze on theEuropean dance circuit. Moreover, Brazilian as well as foreign DJ's, who had been sampling the trio's early recordings, were yearn ing to obtain the rightsto rem ix Trio Mocot6 tunes for new dance compilations. By the mid-nineties, the evidence was clear, and the furious European demand for samba-rock and the MocotO sound inspired Fritz, Nereu, and Joao to balance the responses of their ears, intellect, and emotions and to regroup. A reevaluation ofthe Brazilian music marketplace, which had given them a good bruising 23 years earlier, awakened their need for complete project autonomy, including many of the techniques, in terms of technology and production, that Parahyba had learned from Suba. Their objective was to synchronize their vintage sound with a progressive attitude and translate the MocotO enthusiasm into a modern language. Capturingthe triumvirate of Brazilian soul in superb form, Samba Rock is an exercise in Gestalt wherein the overall result is greater than the sum of all the individual talents. Playing with a spirit, a level of energy, and a degree of commitment that are timeless and inspirational, the CD expresses not only a warmer emotional climate and a more robust, focused approach but also the trio's universal appeal. Samba Rock possesses that sense of intuitive rightness of form and texture that distinguishes all fine music. Setting and shaping a mood that is mined throughout the CD, "Voltei Amor "(I Came Back My Love), is romantically spiced with reprocessed cymbal effects, a chorus ofjazz guitar, a touch of vintage 1970's mini-moog, and plenty ofNereu's provocativepandeiro. Parahyba's drumming, always resourceful, is extraordinarily subtle and responsive, uniquely loosejointed, fluid. Emerging as a satisfying blend of samba, dance rhythms, jazz complexity, soul fervor, and Brazilian timbral color "Tudo Bern" (Everything's Cool), a Trio MocotO signature tune, is definitively samba-rock, but comes very close to gafieira samba. Its seventies-style electric bass, syncopated big band arrangement, and Nereu's malandro-like voiceover establishes immediate communication with the audience. This re-recording BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

of their hit single, remarkably fresh and original, is for dancing. Also for dancing, but cheek to cheek, slowly and closely is "Pensando Nela" (Thinking About Her), a Latin samba, almost a samba bolero, written by an Argentine composer who has lived in Brazil since the beginning of the sambarock era. Joao Parahyba comfortably lays down this Latin groove with the strong second beat of samba on his low tom-tom while Guga Stroeter's vibraphone, sounding more like a wind instrument, displays the uncanny ability to sing the melody. Stroeter's gradations oftouch and minute rhythmic shifts give great expressivity to the line. And the choral refrain "tchu, tchu tchuru . ." is reminiscent of early recordings by Sergio Mendes and Os Cariocas. On the samba-rock masterpiece "Adelita," Fritz vamps on acoustic guitar Jorge Benjor-style, while Marquinhos Romero's piano improvisations call to mind Cesar Camargo Mariano, father of this style. The lyrics are simple, but brass, piano, and guitar contributions are fie -y and exciting. The tune packs a treme dous punch, illustrating a very tight a d super-efficient band. "Os Orixas" (The Divinities), res 1iently inventive in a very organic way, is Afro-Brazilian candomblemusicthatju taposes the ijexa rhythm within the co text ofa Gil Evans arrangement. The tu e celebrates the new century with a pray r for peace, for love, and for the quiet Ii e. All of their musical innovations invol e fusions of formerly distinct styles, but f all their mixtures the kind epitomized y Trio Mocoto on this tune sounds espbcially vital. Reaching out past previous definitions and barriers, "Aguas de Marco" (Waters of March), is a sequel to Fritz's solo cuica performance of "Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head" from their 1973 album. Drawing a stunning richness and depth of tone and color from his instrument, Fritz renders a tour de force tribute to Tom Jobim. "Nao Se i Porque" (I Don't Know Why) features Fritz's acoustic guitar work as well as the bite and sinewy phrasing ofhis cuica. Slipping in and out for just the right emphasis, his cuica execution is magnificent. In exemplary Trio Mocoto style, this new composition is sprinkled throughout with Korg synthesizer, mini-moog, clavinet, and Fender Rhodes. Original ly appearing on Jorge Benjor's 1969 self-titled album, "Kriola" (Creole)is a tribute to black Brazilian women and another samba-rock masterpiece. With electronic effects, lots of in-the-pocket

Hammondorgan,Nereu's vocal improvisation, and Nailor "Proveta" Azevedo's brass arrangements a la the Blues Brothers, this re-recording is anything but dull or conventional. Although the title "A Tonga da Mironga do Kabulete" sounds vaguely African, there is no literal translation. The tune is another ideal vehicle for Fritz's cuica, and the most impressive playing here is his flowing solo that turns ideas inside out and upside down over many choruses. Written by V inicius de Moraes and Toquinho, the tune, recorded and performed many times with Trio Mocot6, appears here as an homage to its composers. Trio Mocoto's approach to the fusion of music and concept is vividly clear in "Kibe Crii," a molten fusion of sambarock, free style rap, and boogie-woogie. This tune's suggestive lyrics recounts the story of an ailing girl who eats Kibe Cr(' (excuse the sexual innuendo) then falls in love and begins living a vibrant life. Featuring Arabic vocals, discreet drum programm ing by Rica Amab is, rapping by Max B.O., andNereu's powerful and pleasing hands on pandeiro, the tune is shamefully celebratory. Revolving around the dynamism between vocalists and soloist, "Nereu Nereu" is again music for dancing, but it's also a jewel for the listener. Proveta's tightly woven arrangement, with plenty of dynamic shading and a broad instrumental palette, has the whole group engaged in inspired melodic and rhythmic interplay. Wordplay ing on the Portuguese word kiss, "beijo," and Cyrano de Bergerac, Rita Lee's composition "Cyrano do Beijorac," makes clever allusions to cannabis. The trio plays with the kind of cohesiveness and attention to nuance that comes from the spirit and sheer joy of performing together for responsive audiences. Without further parading the trio's fusion credentials,"MocotO Beat," a venturesome play of ideas and textures among all participants, is one of the most gratifying events on the CD. In the last track, "Fur (I'm Out), as throughout the CD, everyone plays with an infectious, almost overpowering zeal. The music, sounding clear and flowing, reveals Trio MocotO's thrilling collective spontaneity is back in its pristine, pure groove form. I've rarely heard a CD with as much sustained, collective spirit as Samba Rock. Spirit, moreover, that is allied with technical prowess, originality, individuality, and yet, collective identity. This is fundamentally one of the most regenerating, and 43

therefore important, recordings in years. Listeners will agree that Fritz, Joao, and Nereu have reunited for one of MocotO's best performances. I spoke with Joao Parahyba about rhythm, musical innovation, and popular appeal. He was serene, surprisingly vigorous, and vulnerable. Brazzil—W hat prompted you to develop the timba set? Pa rahyba—Between '65 and '70, the

night clubs started to break drummers. It was the end of bossa nova and sambajazz. And by 1968, drum sets were all but forbidden in night clubs because all bossa nova and quartet drummers were starting to play a new kind of be-bop bossa and to improvise more. All the club owners were saying, "No, no more drums. They're too loud!" And they started to hire acts that played a kind of Bobby Short music. You know, a piano player who sang, or a singer and a pianist, or a singer with a pianist and a bass player. This was the time when Brazilian music festivals started to gain popularity. Elis Regina, Jair Rodrigues, Caetano (Veloso), and Chico (Buarque), and everybody else, wanted to sing and play this music in night clubs. So I found a way to make a light drum set with the timba—a light conga-like instrument, similar to a small surdo, but conical like a wooden tan-tan. I sat on a small square bench and would grip the timba, which was lying on the floor, with my right leg and use my left hand to press the skin of the drum head, like you would press the skin of a conga, so I could have an open or closed sound. You can't do that with the foot pedal of a bass drum. Using the timba instead of a bass drum gave the sound a more Brazilian quality. Together with the timba, I used a hi-hat, a snare, and a cymbal, which I played with brushes in my right hand. This sounded very light, like a small drum kit, but with Brazilian characteristics."This was perfect for Jorge Ben who played acoustic guitar and loved Little Richard, James Brown, and all that Motown stuff, and who started creating a new groove with Trio Mocoto that wasn't samba and wasn't rock. The timba drum set worked beautifully for him because it had the rhythmic punch and good tone, but lacked the overpowering volume of a drum set.


Brazzil—How did Jogral function as a pivotal cultural center? Parahyba—Lots of clubs were pre-

senting American influenced bossajazz. There were lots oftrios and quartets, groups like Zimbo Trio and Luiz Eca's Tamba 4—groups that fused samba with jazz. Jogral started a new fashion of presenting exclusively Brazilian music. Cartola's return was at Jogral. He had been famous in the fifties for writing some traditional sambas, but he disappeared until some journalist (legendary Sergio Porto, better known as Stanislaw Ponte Preta) found him washing cars on the street. primitive feeling, Brazilian feelings. The And then in '68 or '69 that journalist similarity was his very open heart, you brought him to Sao Paulo to record the know? What I mean is that Brazilian soul music had an essence, but it also album that restarted his career. Cartola came to the club every night extracted some of its influences from because Jogral was the only nightclub American music. Artists have always presenting live Brazilian music all night. been stimulated by others. This is how These were vibrant times. With the artists in every medium create, anydecline of bossa-jazz, we started hear- where in the world, and this is probably ing music of the Jovem Guarda, of the strongest similarity with Suba, who Erasmo and Roberto Carlos. Then in had no rules. reaction to both the Jovem Guarda and Brazzil—W as there anything mysto Brazil's political situation, Caetano, Gil, and Tom Ze started the hippie era tical or spiritual about your work with with Tropical ia. Everybody was against Suba? Parahyba—When Suba arrived in the government, the dictatorship, and many songwriters were composing pro- Brazil in 1990, 1 was the first musician he test music. But it was also the begin- met. We started talking at twelve noon ning of the black influence in rock with and didn't finish our conversation until Jorge Ben, Trio Mocoto, Tim Maia, and four in the morning. We found that we were very close in mind, in heart, comDom Salvador. The leader of Banda Black Rio, pletely open without rules, without Oberdan (P. Magalhaes), a sax player, borders. When he passed away, we got his start playing in Dom Salvador's were just starting a project called band together with Jorge Ben and us in Memoria Mundi, which was like put'69. When we started playing the big ting the history of Africa, Asia, Arabia, music festivals, black music grew up. and America into the same pot. All But we were all friends. Everyone at that people have universal or archetypal time used to hang out at Jogral to- experiences. There is definitely a collective ungether—the Mutantes, Rita Lee, Tim Maia, Clementina de Jesus. Rock people conscious or human soul or spirit that together with samba people together flies around the world connecting people. We can hear this in every kind with jazz people. of music. In Jerusalem, there is music Brazzil—Y our early recordings with that sounds like Brazilian music. There Jorge Benjor and the more recent ones are people playing accordion music in with Suba have had equally influential Yugoslavia that you would swear sound impacts. Do you see any similarities like Brazilian chorinhos. This actually exists. Some European choral works between theses artists? Parahyba—Wow! This isn't an easy describe experiences that parallel those question. When I played with Jorge, he of the Indians inside Amazonia, bewas trailblazing a kind of pure Brazilian tween groups that have never met. modern music, with a primitive heart, a Suba's mind was so open to this type of very strong beat, yet at the same time, convergence that he could hear relaacoustic. The difference was the pure, tionships among rhythmic patterns in BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

Yugoslavia, Brazil, and the United States. He liked to create chaos, a structured chaos. He was the positive aspect of chaos in the universe. Forgive my metaphor, but he could group atoms from different planets and make new life forms. Suba opened my musical mind completely, set it on inverse, and opened it to the universe. Brazzil—Where is samba-rock leading? Parahyba—When Jorge (Benj or) first came to the Jogral and jammed with us, we started out playing a samba groove with him, but it wasn't lining up with what he was playing. Jorge was the first guy to use pentatonic scales with samba, so we mixed samba, with its emphasis on the strong beats, together with what he was playing on the guitar, which put the accent on the upbeat. It was different from Brazilian syncopation, and in the beginning, it borrowed ideas from American rock with its guitars and distortion. It adopted some blues ideas; it caught some of samba's old-style ideas and mixed all of these. It was innovative, a kind of birth of Brazilian Latin rock. I call it Brazilian soul music, but people today call it sambarock. If you listen to Santana's work from the seventies, you'll understand what I mean by Latin-rock. It's very difficult to talk about international categories for Brazilian music, but that's the kind of thing that was starting to happen in Brazil at this point, '68, '69. In the seventies, everybody in Brazil started making this kind of samba mixed with rock. The Mutantes looked into this and Elis Regina recorded some music like this as did Gilberto Gil and Caetano. Just like now, with electronic music. Today we're starting to copy famous American and English DJ's, and we have a lot of Brazilians, like DJ Marky, Amon Tobin, Patife, and DJ Dolores who are very, very young musicians with Brazilian roots and very electronic. They're starting to catch sound samples from the seventies, from Trio MocotO from Jorge Ben, and they're developing a new language. When you hear their music, you're able to recognize electronic music with Brazilian characteristics. It's funny because Brazilian hip-hop is very nice. Yeah, very nice. And Suba's CD and the one he proBRAZZIL-APRIL 2002

duced for Babel with electronic tool and in an electronic language have cre ated a new bossa. Everybody is doin something in this new language. N longer can you say, "This is jazz. Thi is rock. This is Latin." Musicians toda put everything in a mixing pot, and the are creating, just like we did in the sev enties. It's an exotic way to make music That's what MocotO has done in th new record. Brazzil—Y eah, it's beautiful. On tune I really like is "Aguas de Marco.' Fritz's cuica playing never ceases t amaze me. Parahyba—This is funny becaus Fritz and Nereu both started in music a samba school percussionists. Whe they came to Sao Paulo, to the Jogral we played with a bass player and bossa nova piano player who was ye crazy. He loved Stan Kenton, he love Thelonious (Monk), he loved Gershwin he loved Dave Brubeck, you know. And in this context, Fritz started takin solos on cuica, not just as a rhyth section player, but a soloist developin melodic ideas, improvising on the tune' melody and chord changes, like a fron line horn player. He got this idea fro jazz, and everybody was blown away. Fritz used to play songs on the cuic for Duke Ellington. It was so easy fo him, that when we were preparing the new CD, I told him, "Fritz, your cuica is a MocotO trademark. No one in Brazil did this or does it." Cuica is an instrument that is almost extinct. Today you see it only in the samba schools. I told him, "You're one of the best players in the instrument's history, and you need to record another solo tune." So we decided on this one as an homage to Tom Jobim, who along with Vinicius, was a very, very close friend of ours.

the samba school. And the guys in the bateria just ignored me until Nereu told them to give me a repinique. But the director remarked, "No, he's white trash!" Then Nereu told him, "No, no, no, this guy is black inside." Once I started playing, the guys said, "Wow, maybe he's not so white after all." And, for me, this was a dream come true. I've been very, very, lucky from my beginning in music until now. Yeah, I've been in a lot ofplaying situations with people you would never believe a Brazilian musician would play with; for instance, Michel Legrand, Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans, Dave Brubeck, and Earl Hines. Brazzil—Tell me about working with Vinicius. Parahyba—For me, this is easy to talk about. He was just like a father for me because we started working together when I was only eighteen years old, and we stayed together for almost three years. Trio Mocoto toured Brazil with him, and we recorded a lot ofmusic with Vinicius and Toquinho. Their partnership began with Trio MocotO as their backing band. We recorded so many great tunes together; for instance, "A Tonga da Mironga do Kabulete," "Canto de Oxum," "Morena Flor," "Tarde em 'tap*" and "Regra Tres." But it's difficult to find their records with Trio Mocot6 mentioned because at that time, sidemen were not given credit in the liner notes. Brazzil—Why did Mocoto break up? Parahyba—We didn't break up. We stopped because I needed to work with my family. I was the black sheep of the family and needed to prove that I was more than a hippie vagabond. I come from a wealthy Sao Paulo family, and

Brazzil—Joao, you began your career as a jazz drummer. How did you wind up playing in the bateria of Imperio Serrano? Parahyba—In February 1969, Nereu said that since I had taught him and Fritz about jazz and contemporary music, that they we're going to teach me about samb.a. school music and invited me to join them for Carnaval. It was my debut on the Avenue, and it was crazy because I was just a small, white, Paulista coming to Rio de Janeiro to play with 45

the sons from families like mine, who lous ! study in the best private schools in Brazzil—How are you feeling about Brazil, are expected to pursue meaningful careers in areas other than music. the new CD? Parahyba—I love the record. I love Music was seen as something for simple "MocotO Beat" because it's made for people who didn't study. But these people who want a solid groove and were the sixties; lots of turbulent and who crave samples. I love Jorge's crazy things were happening. We wore "Adelita." The arrangement was done long hair. We protested against govby the trombone player in Jorge's band. ernment corruption, just like in the What's most important for me on this United States. My older brother was CD, what makes me most proud, is the living in London and kept sending me way it was recorded. When we started LP's by Traffic, Ten Years After, the thinking about the project, I met with Beatles, all kinds of new music. I had always wanted to be a musician, Mario Caldato. He's one of the biggest my whole life, and then I met two guys, producers of electronic music in Los one black and one mulatto, who became Angeles. He produced the Beastie Boys. my symbiotic brothers, which was the Mario told me, "Oh, man, you have to beginning of the fighting in my family. make a CD that sounds "vintage." I My father, who by 1975, had come to said, "Okay, but what do you mean embrace Fritz and Nereu as friends said, vintage?" He said, "The group goes "Look, you have a family now. Come to into the studio and records live." I said, work with me." And he was convincing "We've always recorded that way. We because by the end of '75, disco music go into the studio, and we just do it. All had killed all live music, and we were MocotO's records have a groove that losing our market. So I spoke with Fritz feels live because it is. We've never and Nereu saying, "Let's take a rest recorded any other way!" now, while we we're on top. We're very I told Mario that I wouldn't want to use good, but the gigs are dying." We a lot of Pro Tools on our tunes with all agreed to all follow our own separate that interfacing, MIDI sequencing, and paths, but we kept in close contact, all that sort of "virtual recording." I was concerned that we wouldn't capture always, like family. Mocoto's joy, our fountain of energy. Brazzil—What brought you out of Recording track by track, musician by musician, often sets up something very semi-retirement? Pa rahyba—A few interesting events cold, and that's not what Trio Mocoto started falling into place. First, the Bra- is about. We are happy and happening zilian DJ's discovered that MocotO on stage as well as in the studio. It's a mixed samba, jazz, rock, and soul into a show in the studio. We've never resolid groove, and they started sampling corded two and three minute tunes. We our material. Then Beco Dranoff located do eight minute and ten minute tunes. I us, and feeling certain that ours was the told Mario, "Man, I love technology. I musical language for today, encour- use it today in my solo projects, but aged us to put out a new CD. It seemed with Mocoto, I'd rather record everycompletely outrageous because we al- one together." ways had our public from the seventies, And it was very crazy, but the results all the people who used to like us, people are excellent. There is a certain spontawho have since grown up, but I never neity that permeates the album and that imagined young people from dance could never have been designed or music, drum 'n' bass, hip-hop, and wished into or added to a recording. It's techno would be buying our CD and either there or it isn't. The last tune, telling us, "Man, Trio MocotO is pure "Fui," was a groove we set up with groove. You guys are the best!" That's everybody playing just to fix somereally hilarious because in the last three thing. It was composed at that time, live or four months, our new CD has been in the studio. Samba Rock is a very purchased most often by people be- happy recording. tween 15 and 25 years old. We're actuBrazzil—Why are Brazilian percusally doing shows with young people from hip-hop, with rappers. This is re- sionists so valued abroad, but not as ally absurd, it's ironic, and it's fabu- much in Brazil? 46

Parahyba—Music in Brazil is like football. It's so natural, so instinctive, that talent isn't appreciated. If you look at Jobim's career, you see clearly that he was a very, very gifted composer and arranger in the fifties and early sixties, yet he only became famous in Brazil after 1967, when he recorded Francis Albert Sinatra & Antonio Carlos Jobim. Brazilians have to be famous in the United States first in order to be recognized at home. Even Bebel (Gilberto) who is now famous around the world, is not famous here. Nobody plays her CD here. We have a saying here, "Santo de casa nao faz milagres," that translates loosely as "Things from home aren't miracles." It's like saying, "The grass is always greener on the other side." Brazzi1-1 know what you're saying. Carlos Malta and I went to hear Charles Lloyd,and I couldn't believe how reverential Carlos was, almost as if we were listening to Coltrane. Parahyba—Yeah, but it's a completely different mind set. Carlinhos attended a school not many in the world have been lucky or talented enough even to visit, and he surprised everybody. Carlos started working with Hermeto when he was very young and stayed with him for years. As he was growing up, his mind was completely and genetically transformed by Hermeto. We've jammed with Hermeto many times, and let me tell you, sitting in with Hermeto is not what most players expect. It's nothing like reading through the changes of a tune for two or three choruses. When you jam with Hermeto, one song can be an hour and a half long, and when it's your turn to solo, everybody leaves, and you solo for forty minutes. I can verify that a player needs to be able to think and have many, many, many things to say musically in order to sustain himself for a forty minute solo. I'm not even mentioning the sheer physical stamina necessary. Malta, without a doubt, is one of Brazil's finest, a fantastic musician. Brazzil—Could you talk about the way music, especially technology, has been affecting young musicians? Parahyba—We have a lot of good musicians, young people, around the world who are just a little bit lost in the BRAZZIL -APRIL 2002

cycle of new music right now. Music is transforming into a new language, and nobody knows it yet. We're just at the beginning of the century, so something is going to evolve. It's like Esperanto, you know? Esperanto was the language invented so everyone could communicate with each other, and music has become our Esperanto. With globalization, music is becoming the world's primary language, our international language. Nothing is too radical for music. Music has no frontiers. You can look into music's eyes and see its soul. You can play in Brazil and somebody else will feel it in Russia or in the United States. Words aren't necessary. Everybody understands: the Chinese, Portuguese, Russians, Brazilians. I'm making some music now with some Finish people. With today's technology, I can talk with you, I can talk with China in just seconds. Some people say that globalization makes you lose your roots. I don't agree. It's the best way to expose all the roots of the world for everyone who is interested. Today we can go into any library and hear everything. I can even see Chinese music. The world is open for your mind. It's a new universe, and the MocotO groove is our small contribution.

Selected Discography: Artist(s)





Black Rio



Zelia Duncan




Trio MocotO

mba Rock

Six Degrees



mba Soul 70!

Six Degrees


Trio MocotO

io Mocoto



Trio MocotO

Trio Mocoto




O Maiores Sambas Enredo Philips


Muita Zorra!

Phi lips/Forrna




Trio MocotO Jorge Ben

gro E Lindo

Chico Buarque

C nstruccio



Jorge Ben

F rca Bruta



Jorge Ben

J rge Ben .



Brazzil—Will this new language help people understand our world? Parahyba—People will never understand the world


as long as they're fighting. We don't need any more radical religions around the world. We need people, not countries. We need peace. To paraphrase the Beatles, "Happiness is a warm gun." You can fight with humor; sometimes that's the best weapon. Trio MocotO wants to bring people together everywhere and make them shake and make them smile. Web sites of interest: Jorge Benjor Crammed Discs/Ziriguiboom Six Degrees Records Trio Mocoto Bruce Gilman, music editor for Brazzil magazine, received his Masters degree in music from California Institute of the Arts. He is the recipient of three government grants that have allowed him to research traditional music in China, India, and Brazil. His articles on Brazilian music have been translated and published in Dutch, Spanish, German, Serbian, and Portuguese. You can reach him through his e-mail:

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Written by Miguel Falabella and Mari Carmen Barbosa and directed by Migue Falabella and Josimar Carneiro (music) Jantar Entre Amigos - Pequeno Terremotos-A couple (Karen and Gabe decide to make an inventory of their ow 12-year-old relationship when their bes friends (Beth and Tom) tell them they ar splitting. With Xuxa Lopes, Otavio Mueller Renata Sorrah and Mario Shoemberger Written by Donald Margulies, directed b Felipe Hirsch. 0 Homem do Sobretudo Escuro (The Ma with the Dark Overcoat)-Based on Agath Christie's short stories. A young coupl who owns a boarding house in England i visited unexpectedly by a police inspector Directed by Silvio Tadeu and Ina Carvalho with the troupe Cia. Target de Teatro.

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Thirteen Ghosts (13 Fantasmas), Ice Age (A Er Do Gelo), Hart's War (A Guerra de Hart), T Time Machine (A Maquina do Tempo) Monster's Ball (A Ultima Ceia), The Musketee (A Vinganca do Mosqueteiro), When the S Falls (Alto Risco), Gosford Park (Assassinat em Gosford Park), Mulholland Drive (Cida dos Sonhos), The Majestic (Cine Majestic) Training Day (Dia de Treinamento), E.T -Th Extraterrestrial (ET. 0 Extraterrestre), Collat eral Damage (EfeitoColateral), Whipped (Ele So Pensam Naquilo), The Straight Sto (Historia Real), Jimmy Neutron, Jimmy Neu Iron: Boy Genius (0 MeninoGe nio), K-Pax (K Pax-0 Caminho da Luz), Shallow Hal (0 Amo ECego), The One (0Conftonto), The Man Wh Wasn't There (0 Homem Que Nao Estava La) Lord ofThe Rings (0Senhordos Aneis), Ocean' Eleven (Onze Homens e um Segredo), The Roya Tenenbaums (Os Excentricos Tenenbaums) Peter Pan- Return to Neverland (Peter Pan- D Volta aTerra do Nunca), Pi (Pi), 1 AmSam (U Lig& de Amor), A Beautiful Mind (Uma Ment Brilhante) Dias de Nietzsche em Turim (Days 9 Nietzsche in Turin)-Brazi1/2001-Th passage of German philosopher Friedric Nietzsche (1844-1900) through the Itali town of Turin. Based in the last writings b that pioneer existentialist. Directed b Julio Bressane, with Fernando Eiras, Paul Jose, Tina Novelli, Leandra Leal, an Mariana Xiemenes. Latitude Zero (Latitude Zero)-Brazil/ 1999-Lena, who is pregnant and lives in a tavern by the road, gets involved with former policeman after being dumped b her boyfriend. Directed by Toni Ventur. with Debora Duboc and Claudio Jaborand Bellini e a Esfinge (Bellini and th Sphinx)-Brazil/200 1-Detective Rem Bellini gets involved with a prostitute, wh helps him, while trying to find a mysteriou woman. Directed by Roberto Santucci, wit Fabio Assuncao, Malu Mader, Maristan Dresch. Based on Tony Bellotto's novel Avassaladoras (Dominatrix)-Brazi l 2001-Comedy. The growing up of Laur who has to learn how to deal with he desires and impulses. Directed by Mar Mourao, with Giovanna Antonelli, Re naldo Gianecchini, Caco Ciocler, and Ro Campos. LavouraArcaica (Archaic Tillage) Release

in English as To the Left of the FatherBrazi1/2001-The story of a Lebanese family in Brazil. One of the sons feeling oppressed leaves home. Based on Raduan Nassar's novel Lavoura A rcaica. Directed by Luiz Fernando Carvalho, with Selton Mello, Raul Cortez, Simone Spolidore, and Juliana Carneiro.

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(562) 435-6238 53

The Boys from Brazil is a 1978 Hollywood production based on an Ira Levin best-seller. It concerns a secret plot to clone the dead Adolf Hitler, masterminded by Gregory Peck's villain who is no other than the Nazi Angel of Death, Dr. Josef Mengele; we are supposed to swallow the implausible scenario that he was alive and well and plotting in Brazil. Laurence Olivier gives a great hammy performance in a thriller with moments of high camp, peppered by streaks of intense violence and punctuated by a rather good original score, which lost the Oscar to the music from Midnight Express. The title has entered English usage denoting South America's fictitious neo-Nazi sympathizers in Chile, Brazil and Argentina, whereas the movie and its preposterous plot is forgotten. Except that we now know that when the book was written and the film was shot, Dr. Josef Mengele was indeed alive and well, leading an uneventful existence in Sao Paulo. In the Curitiba bus station the young woman at the counter flirted with me. -You aregoing to FlorianOpolis?", she half-asked, half-remarked as she saw my ticket. Indeed. I was. -One-way?" Ermm, yes. "Oi-or, she remarked, eyes denoting what-a-shame. Phew, this is still Brazil. My bus was a two-story modern monster with TV and toilet at the back: reclining seats let me put my feet up: I still recall my surprise at the noiselessness of the engine, the functioning air-conditioning. the comfort combined with punctuality and theAmerican-style 'Have-a-nice-day' service. Where were the screaming children? They were sitting obediently playing with their Gameboys. Where were the loud chatting couples? There. reading newspapers and magazines. Where was the pandemonium occasioned when storing your luggage under the bus? I checked mine at the Catarinense counter with the brunette who appeared so upset at my departure. glanced at my coupon. I wasn't flyingto Florianopolis, wasl? No. John, this is a bus station, but this is a Santa Catarina company, and


there are many German-Brazilians there. To reach the said state of Santa Catarina we had to descend from Curitiba to Joinville, flanked by the tall pines of the Mata Atlantica and by threelorry-long logging juggernauts whose motorway antics, such as overtaking each other on blind curves, reminded me that, refined behavior aside, this is South America after all. If anything, as one approaches Argentina, the drivers become more erratic, not less.

The Boys from Brazil Oliveira Vianna who, in a series of books, professed the viewthat the blacks are an inferior race and dragged Brazil downwards suggested that only Aryanization could help the country. JOHNM

Joinville is an embarrassment. Industrial and ugly with snooker halls and overthe-lop motels: here's one shaped like a windmill (for S&M sessions?); another comprising several individual log-cabins advertises itself as 'Motel California' (for the discerning ageing hippie?); and awhaleshaped motel (catering for the Moby-Dick sized punter?) The more we enter Santa Catarina whose coastline we begin to hug after Barra Velha, the more you notice the names—Bar Schmitt, Fazenda Breitner, Hotel Fischer (offering cachaca and queijo colonial)—and the buildings: gone are the usual cement-and-corrugated iron or adobe-and-wattle dwellings and in come Scandinavian-like log cabins and Swiss wooden-slate chalets. There's a self-congratulatory sign before Itajai: "500 years em paz—Parabens, Brazil". (500 years in peace—Congratulations, Brazil). Have these people never been to school? There have been hundreds of conflicts in this country. Even the renaming of Florianopolis from Desterro was the result of a suppressed local rebellion. On the right we pass a sign to Blumenau, the most German of all Brazilian towns, which celebrates its own annual Oktoberfest—unlike the Bavarian original this actually does occur in October—a symbol of the multicultural mosaic that's Brazil. Ifyou think I'm talking bollocks you'd be right. Brazil started attracting European migrants for two reasons: the gradual abolition of slavery during a period of agricultural expansion, and a racial desire of 'whitening' the country's population, an unspoken thesis which became quite outspoken in the early 20th century. Its prime exponent was Oliveira Vianna who, in a series of books,


professed the view that the blacks are an inferior race and dragged Brazil downwards—only Aryan ization could help the country. In the 1840s a group of Germans and Swiss first came to work in the coffee plantations of Sao Paulo and immediately rebelled at the conditions they were supposed to work under—so much that some European states, notably Prussia, banned Brazilian agencies from advertising passages for prospective migrants. It would take many steps towards the eventual abolition of slavery for European immigration really to take off in Brazil. In the eleven years from 1872 to 1883, about 50,000 immigrants arrived; in 1888 alone, the year of the abolition, Brazil welcomed 132,000 new faces. As the British and the French had their own colonies to choose from, it was left to the poor of the countries who had lost out on the initial carving of the globe to emigrate to Brazil: East Europeans, Italians and last, but not least, Germans who settled in the south. The Italians, who made up about 50 percent ofnew arrivals, any Spanish who made the move and of course the steady wave of mainland Portuguese were acculturated easily. Not so the Germans, who formed the fourth largest immigrant group, for the language was very different, their customs Northern European and their demeanor more exclusive. They started bui lding their own schools in their own towns and only learned sufficient Portuguese to communicate outside their sheltered existence which under other circumstances might have been called a ghetto. This isolationism combined with the doctrine of Pan-Germanisrnin Europe, which fuelled Prussian expansion in the end of the 19'h century and continued in Hitler's time, created mistrust between the German immigrants and the Portuguese establishment. The creation ofaNazi Party in Santa Catarina didn't help much either... When we reached Itajai I noticed for the first time that this is the same BR-101 motorway I rode on from Fortaleza to CanoaQuebrada. It doesn't quite have the ring of a Route 66, but it more than compensates for the sights. I'd been on it from Natal to Pippa—from Recife to Porto de Galinhas, and I hit it again near Cachoeira. It continues just off Ilheus to Itabuna onwards to V itOria and Rio de Janeiro where it forms the highly scenic coastal route to Santos passing Parati, Angra dos Reis and Guaruja. It sort of disappears around Sao Paulo (doesn't everything?) with various state


highways to re-emerge in Joinville an. continue uninterrupted to Rio Grande d Sul through the National Park of Lagoa d Peixe where the perilous stretch betwee Bojuru and Tavares is nicknamed `Th, Road of Hell'. The BR-101 stops at th bottom of the park peninsula opposite Ri Grande—the town which gave the south ern state its name. It was at the turnoff t Brusque I spotted the highway name agai near a car showroom ofthe I rmaos Fische full of solid, commodious lorries. Th Brusques seem to like their cars, wel sturdy. As the afternoon progressed, the sha • ows became longer, the twittering bin. emerged—along with the vultures—an the ghastly painted-by-numbers skyscra ers of Balneario Camborin blotted t landscape ahead. This resort offers t best imitation of a Spanish Costa ove building you can get in South Americath side of Viria del Mar, a kind of Torrem linos-without-the-lager-louts with the ro of the ubiquitous British assumed by t Argentineans, Santa Catarina' s main sou offoreign exchange. It is not widely Icno that FlorianOpolis is the second most vi ited town in Brazil after Rio, but yes, it eclipses Manaus, Eoz do Iguaeu, Olin • a and Salvador; it makes Ouro Preto bite t dust and Fortaleza turn green with en And the only thing FlorianOpolis and San a Catarina have to show for, is beaches. At Itapema (no, not Ipanema ir Iracema) we hit one of those famo s beaches with a thicket of villas sporti g enough satellite dishes to intercept co munications over the whole of Patagon a, before we climbed up in the mountai s again. Santa Catarina is a small state of three Belgiums full of mountains and co. . line, which make for an appealing comi nation like in Chile—especially now, we drive through hydrangeas, wild ban . a trees and ivy creepers, which frame be. tifully the town of Porto Belo below. Whyever anyone would spend time in Balneario Camboriu when this gem o a peninsula is so close, is for advertisers to ponder over. But tackiness rears its h... d even here. Forget those whale-and-wi dmill motels: here is a whole piznria wit in an old, rusting airplane. Excuse Me. • o people crave for airline food and pl. ic cutlery on a Saturday night? Do they ge to wear seatbelts, sit uncomfortably with he minimum of legroom and queue inte nably for the tiny toilets? And how did he frigging plane get there? Before I had time to solve such ete al questions, we turned a curve and I shut y brain, for there's a panoramic view of Florianopolis which has the whole pus

enthralled. The setting only Brazil can provide: a city split between the mainland shore and the hills of the island of Santa Catarina, less than two miles across a channel which divides the sea into a north and south 'bay'. The two city halves are joined by an old iron suspension bridge— now a spectacular state monument—and a more modern one below. Dusk in shades of orange bring on the lights which flicker in a sloping, subtropical San Francisco without the fog. I watch in disbelief. Behind the city, on the island itself there are forty-two beaches as remote or as cosmopolitan as you desire; a large inward lagoon stretches itself next to a forested national park; and smaller islets full of coves, pirates' bays and old Portuguese forts surround this pearl ofan island. A Little History If someone offered you a window seat in a time-capsule to Brazil's 500-year-old historical past where would you choose to land? At Monte Pascoal with Cabral and his men checking out the first contact between the Old World and the New? In Salvador watching a slave ship unload its human cargo? In Aleijadinho's atelier observing the master at work, trying to second-guess his disease? Nah—rd go for a laugh, attending moments ofthe Portuguese court in Rio de Janeiro where we had left them some chapters ago: King Joao VI aplump, effeminate slob carrying chicken drumsticks in his pocket in case he needed a snack, his uglyas-sin, scheming, autocratic Spanish wife Carlota Joaquina, and their two sons— acne-ridden Dom Pedro and cowboy-playboy Dom Miguel, extraordinary womanizers both. Mad Queen Maria had died in exile back in March 1816, but was not buried until the Court's return to Portugal in 1821. Ofcourse, the royal funerary rites had to be observed back home: the queen had to lie in state for.all to pay their respects. When they opened the coffin which had suffered the heat of the tropics for all these years, the stench of decomposition was such that one of the Princesses fainted. The ladiesin-waiting for the first time earned their keep as they had to reclothe the body in a black robe, gloves, shoes and stockings, while the nobles and the bishops had to line up andlciss her hand. I'd pay good money to watclfthat. ...Back to Brazil where Dom Joao opened its ports to trade with Great Britain and caused a major boom in the London Stock Exchange where thousands of madcap schemes were launched. In the year


2000. when asked about the capital of Brazil, many Brits answer Buenos Aires, so imagine the extent of their ignorance nearly two centuries back: they tried to sell ladies' corsets to the sweating mu/alas, cast iron fireplaces to the denizens of Rio and ice skates to the barefoot population of the Nordeste. But soon enough the British ships outnumbered the Portuguese in the ports by twenty to one and Brazil entered the chessboard of Great Power machinations. Around it Spanish Latin America was ablaze. as Napoleonic ideas spread. Perhaps it is fitting for a continent with operetta politics that Simon Bolivar, a Basque revolutionary with a Clintonesque libido, aided by the bastard son of an Irish settler (Bernardo 0' Higgins) and an Argentinean hypochondriac (Josede San Martin) should liberate the Spanish colonies, with the English fearsome seadog, Admiral Cochrane, playing the pantomime grandedame. It was the very presence of the King in Brazil that avoided the bloodiness of the uprisings from Santiago to Caracas. Even after the Duke of Wellington's successful Second Peninsular War, even after Waterloo, even afterthe newly assembled Cortes recalled him back to Lisbon, even after the British tried in vain to convince him to return to Portugal, King Joao VI stayed in Rio, his only moves being from the Palace of Sao Cristrivao to the one on the I lha do Govemador. Some say he was sluggish and indecisive, some say he liked Brazil and his new subjects more than Portugal and its power games—and who can blame him—but his actions always make sense with hindsight. He left Portugal when he should have done, he stayed in Brazil as long as he had to in order to avoid bloodshed, he returned to Portugal at the right time to save it from anarchy. and he left his 23-year old heir Dom Pedro in Rio to take care of business in case independence did catch on. Dom Joao remained to his death a rare figure of equanimity in an era seething with conspiracy, although he is loathed in Brazil for ransacking the Treasury upon his return to Portugal. He looked increasingly porcine towards the end ofhis life and like Elvis he died by food. His supposed last words were: "This broth has killed me" giving rise to the usual speculation, that he was poisoned. Gossip has it that Caetano, the servantwho brought him that lethal broth, apparently saw the court physician Dr Aguiar empty a phial into the soup bowl (-The King's tonic-) and that some liquid spilled on the napkin burning it immediately. And wow!—


Caetano was found strangled later in his room! But gossip it all was—it took King Joao six days to die after he collapsed during a procession, and the only aberration regarding his circumstances is that he died almost exactly 10 years after his mad mother. The last momentous act of his reign was to recognize the independence ofBrazil. This happened so quickly and so relatively bloodlessly, it left everyone astounded, including the King, the Cortes and the London Foreign Office. It was in the Lisbon post-Napoleonic Constitutional Assembly that the envy towards the rich ex-colony exploded. The Rio notables were enraged when they found out that laws were being passed before the deputies from Brazil, now an ex-colony with equal status to Portugal, had taken their seats. And when they did, they were taunted and shouted down when they refused to accept that their courts oflaw should be moved to Lisbon and that they should lose their new commercial privileges. The question of sending troops to Brazil—which had none of its own—was raised. The Cortes talked of exiling Prince Pedro to England. The first act of defiance by the young Prince was his public declaration on February 9th 1822 that he would not leave; an episode which has been labeled 'dia do fico '—the day of 'I'm staying'. I mention this, because for years when I was learning Portuguese, I thoughtfico came fromficus and lived under the impression that those giddy Brazilians were celebrating a Day of The Fig or, judging from their dental floss swimming trunks, the Day ofthe Fig Leaf. Sigh—it would be a nice idea. In August 1822, an ill Dom Pedro set off from Rio to Sao Paulo just as he found out that the Cortes in Lisbon had declared its intention to undertake 'the reconquest of Brazil'. The Paulistas welcomed him in their town with fireworks and cheers; Dom Pedro had to smile and gesture royally despite terrible diarrhea—we all have our crosses to bear. He also checked out the mood in Santos and on September 7th at the banks ofthe Ipirangariver he received two letters from Rio. His secretary read them while Dom Pedro was 'crouching by' as historians put it, not explaining why he didn't read them himself, although they stress pointedly that he was still suffering from dysentery. The first missive was from the Cortes which had sent an ultimatum—arrest his Prime Minister Jose Bonifacio and return to Lisbon NOW. The other was a plea from the said Jose Bonifacio and Pedro's wife Empress Leopoldina. They asked him either to return to Portugal as a pris-

oner or stay free and proclaim independence. Dom Pedro rose, ripped up the letters and told his equerry: -Inform my guard, I have decided upon the Independence of Brazil". It was 4:30pm and a scene I would like to have witnessed with my Time Machine, if only to ascertain what Dom Pedro's squatting involved and whether history would have been different had Imodium already been invented. Incidentally, that 7'h of September is a national holiday throughout Brazil with streets and squares in every small village and town named after that day. It is indicative of the state of eat 1 9''' century communications that on the 20" September the Cortes was still determining the post-Dom. Pedro state of affairs in the now ex-excolony. I would also like to have been in the chamber and see the faces of the exaltados when news of the declaration of independence broke out. From then on, events proceeded quickly. The Portuguese garrisons in the Northeast rebelled. The main resistance occurred in Salvador. There, General Luiz Madeira only surrendered when Admiral Cochrane, fresh from supporting the Spanish rebels, accepted Dom Pedro's invitation to head the new Brazilian navy and blockaded Salvador. On July 2nd—the famous Dois do Julho in Bahian history— the last Portuguese were driven out of Bahia. The further capitulation of Pernambuco and last of all Maranhao was a matter of months. All Portuguese property in Brazil was confiscated to force the Cortes into acceptance. Dom Pedro was crowned Emperor Pedro I on December Pt 1822: a constitutional monarch in the New World, at war with the country of his birth—and his father. Note that Pedro I was his shortened name. The longer one including all his titles was Dom Pedro de Alcantara Francisco Antonio Joao Carlos Xavier de Paula Miguel Rafael Joaquim Jose Gonzaga Pascoal Cipriano Serafim de Braganca e Bourbon, Prince of Beira, Royal Prince of the United Kingdom of Portugal. Brazil and the Algarve. Prince Regent of the Kingdom of Brazil, First Constitutional Emperor and Perpetual Defender of Brazil, Duke of Braganca. Although the power of cut-and-paste is formidable, I shall still stick with Pedro I. It was that dynastic succession that ensured Brazil's survival, because its future was not secure until the newly-formed Holy Alliance of Great Powers agreed to its independence. The first country to recognize Brazil was James Monroe's United States, but the Holy Alliance was at odds. Bourbon France and Czarist Russia were


for the status quo ante; Metternich' s Austria saw a monarchy in South America as a counterpoise to all these new caudilho democracies; this left Great Britain with a carte blanche to mediate for Brazil's independence. Negotiations started in London in July 1824 between Brazil, Portugal, Great Britain and Austria as an observer of the Holy Alliance. The talks were stalled until Canning shocked the Portuguese representative with a candid superpower dressingdown: "Tell me", he wrote to him, "if you believe that any government here would throw away the trade with Brazil in order to avoid the simple admission that what is, is, viz. that Brazil is separated from Portugal [..] The King ofPortugal has it yet in his hands to decide whether, Brazil shall be independent by his act or in spite of him". His intermediary, Sir Charles Stuart, hopped—slowly, as hopping involved a slow tparinejoumey—between Lisbon and Rio btaining finally a treaty on August 29. 825, ratified on November the 9th. Perha s it was this ratification that was the last naitl in the coffin ofJoao VI—the only Europkn monarch who had everwitnessed the vita ty, vigor and promise of its transatlantic ,;:olonies and seen the child grow taller thvhe parent. The treaty recognized the inkependence of Brazil, prohibited its unifioation with other Portuguese colonies, seated- an alliance between the two countries, restored the rights of any sequestered property and finally it arranged for Brazil to pay reparations to Portugal— with money that was lent by London banks. Thus it was in debt to international bankers that Brazil was born and that has been its curse ever since; in debt it has lived for most of its history and on her 500th year she owed to foreigners more than all African countries from the Sahara to Cape Town. One of Dom Pedro daughters from his first wife, Leopold ma, was Francisca Carolina who married the son of French King Louis Philippe in 1843. (Incidentally, the Viennese Empress Leopoldina is #94 in the list of famous gays and lesbians in Brazil of the Grupo Gay da Bahia; she had two public lesbian affairs: one with English travel writer Maria Graham who left us an excellent account of 1820s Brazil and another with the Parisian dancerNaomi Thierry.) Dona Francisca's dowry were twentyfive square leagues of land. With the 1848 revolt and subsequent rule of Louis Napoleon, the Philippes fled to England and in order to survive sold the family silver and their large plot to the Colonization Society of Hamburg which sent 118 German and Swiss immigrants in 1851 to found the city


of Dona Francisca. Its name was soon changed after the title of her husband: Prince de Joinville. You thought I was drifting, eh? The reception at Hotel Faial on the beautifully-named Rua Felipe Schmidt gave me a map of Florianopolis. I was buzzing after a short taxi ride from the bus station where I had successfully convinced the driver I was on business from Curitiba. Hey, I can fool anyone!, I thought until I saw the city map with all GLS spots o FlorianOpolis clearly marked. I was doubly impressed. Not only by the town tourist board which had printed out a map specially for gays and lesbians, but also by my receptionist who earned his tip. I checked. There was the Mix Café Bar and Dancing, the gay sauna Oceano, Chandon Danceteria... At the time of my first trip in Brazil, Renildo Santos had just been murdered i Alagoas. Soon after, on 24th May 1994, Claudio Orlando dos Santos a 30-year-ol AIDS activist was distributing fre condoms to the transvestites in the Avenu Ivo Silveira on the continental side o Florianopolis. I leave the rest to Amnes International's Report—AMR 19/31/97: "At 9pm Military Police arrived an the transvestites who were in the area away. According to a letter, Claudio Or lando dos Santos wrote to the president o the Brazilian Lawyers Association in San Catarina, dated June 1994, the Milit Police officers began to harass him an threatened to arrest him. He ran to a publi telephone and called the Captain of th Military Police, Edson Luiz, Coordinato ofCentro de OperacOes da Policia Militar COPOM, to report what had happened The Military Police officers came back and started to beat him with truncheons and kick him. After he lost consciousness, he was handcuffed and moved, in the boot of the Military Police vehicle, to the 8th Civil Police Precinc where he was again beaten and insulted b the Military Police, and his personal be longings destroyed". Dos Santos who w suffering from AIDS himself never full recovered from the maltreatment and die within six months of the incident. Yet six years later, the Tourist Boar

of Santa Catarina promotes a map with all gay and lesbian places clearly marked. From my room I could see the bridges and the continental part of the town across the channel; I couldn't help thinking how much they spoiled the view by creating that second motorway bridge. The view south-west looks across to a large motorway, the Via Expressa, two large bus stations or an empty Sambodromo—and that only comes to life during Carnaval. It's a pity they closed the old iron suspension bridge Here ilio Luz for safety reasons in 1985 after just sixty years service; surely Floripa authorities could have done better with proper maintenance. Notice the local shortening: Floripa—the Brazilian habit of making tongue-twister towns out of names (Petropolis, TeresOpolis, Rondonopolis, Anapolis et al) has thankfully disappeared recently with the renaming of towns to Joao Pessoa and Euclides da Cunha. Bar 32 is the hippest place in Floripa, chosen by the Brazilian Playboy magazine as having one ofthe best selection of beers in the country. It's within the expanse of the Mercado Public°, which is full of very popular watering holes from the early evening on. I chose the oysters—the only live food I allow myself to digest—and a glass of Undurraga, a Chilean dry white wine. I expected halfa dozen; I was served twelve. I expected them size AA like French farmed huitres, and when they came. they Were deep-sea-monstrous. I looked at the menu: Norwegian gravadlax, Scottish whiskey, Chilean wine, Metaxa brandy, French foie gras, caviar, lobster, crab.. For such a famous institution it's tiny. This place with fewerthan ten two-person tables sells the most champagne in the whole of Brazil? The busy waiter picked my empty wine glass. -Mais urn?" Why not? Voce é de Curitiba?" This is the second timd in a day. Tanned and relaxed, I surely didn't look like a gringo. "No", I said. -From London". If the waiter was surprised, he didn't puncture his cool. "Ah, London", he said taking more interest in me. "I'm originally from Italy". It's reassuring to note that long distance can be responsible for geographical


• • • •• •


I think it's the hypocrisy behind the concept which makes me scoff at this uniquely Brazilian institution. Motels are not hotels based around the car as in the United States, they are hotels for couples who go there to shag. There are • cheap motels which rent rooms by • the hour, expensive motels which • offer special breakfasts and luxury • motels which offer bridal suites, en• suite Jacuzzis and porn video chan• nels. My friends in Brazil see noth• • ing untoward; they make use of •• them all the time. Because for ca• sual sex, especially if it involves a • prostitute, they're safer; they're not • going to ask any questions or de: mand ID cards. But it is exactly this • institutionalization of one-night• stands by businessmen cheating on • their wives which annoys me. Gay • saunas and darkrooms provide a •• sheltered space for men, whose sexu• ality might otherwise lead them to • seek satisfaction outdoors and com• promise their safety, but motels • thrive on adultery, prostitution and • maintaining one's 'good name'. • Ultimaly, men—alrmst al• • ways men—use motels because they • don't want to be seen having sex •• with a prostitute, with someone other • than their wife or girlfriend or with • other men, thus keeping alive the • flame ofthe shame that caused them • to be clandestine in the first place. So this is what I have against mo• tels: they are either perpetuating the • stigma attached to prostitution and • homosexuality or facilitating the • disintegration of trust. •

• • • • • • •

confusion both ways: it. s riot just Europeans who view Latin America as a homogeneous whole. "London is in England", I smiled condescendingly. "But I've been to -" Was that a shot? Was that a shot?", asked the waiter eyes wide. We heard another shot. And another. They were from next door. The waiter got up along with all of the bar's patrons. "My wine!", I reminded him. I couldn't swallow those oysters dry.


The waiter had already run off. So that's what shots sound like. Better stay here. There was no one at the bar or behind the till. I walked over and re-filled my glass with wine. I heard the ambulance arrive. I checked my watch. Fifteen minutes, long in a small town like this. The waiter returned gesticulating excitedly. "Personal dispute", he said. "In the bar Goianio, next arcade along. One guy shot another over a woman". And I thought it was in Rio and Salvador I had to watch out ENVY PROVOKES FIGHT AND LEAVES TWO WOUNDED Florianopolis 12.4.2000—local paper.

-Because ofa woman, two men caused a v iolent fight close to the capital ' s Mercado Public° around 20:30 last night and both were shot. According to the Operations Center of the Military Police which called the Ambulance, Rodrigo Goncalves shot in the shoulder, neck and buttocks is interned in the Intensive Care Unit (UTI) of the Hospital Celso Ramos. Ademir Joao Coelho, 30, shot in the abdomen received attention in the Emergency Surgery. Until late last night both patients have been subject to operations to remove the projectiles from their bodies. "A police spokesman said that Ademir, a bus driver, became jealous when he saw his ex-girlfriend with Rodrigo and gun in hand, appeared and shot his rival. Although wounded, Rodrigo was able to react. He removed the calibre 22 revolver from the hand of the aggressor and managed to shoot him in the abdomen. The weapon was apprehended by the police and handed over to the duty officer of the 1" Police Station for safekeeping." The onslaught of the beaches of Santa Catarina started next morning when I took a tour of the island with several Paulista tourists and Manuel, one of these arrogant Cariocas who believe that splendor and elegance begins and ends in Rio. We first headed to the bar Ponto de Vista for a panoramic view ofthe Lagoa da Conceicao. I find the concept of an island with many beaches quite acceptable—but to have an island with many beaches and a large and lengthy inward lagoon perfectly reflecting the forested dunes which surround it, smacked ofexcess of goodwill by the Creator. I mentioned it to Fernando, our guide. -We have TWO such lagoons", he said. -This is the developed one, with villas and nightlife. There is One further

south, the Lagoa do Pen i which is still pristine". We did manage to get a glimpse of the smaller lagoon after we stopped at a promontory to admire the long curve of the beach at Armacao, somnolently Bahian in its laziness with one ofthe smaller islands, the Ilha do Campeche, figuring hazily in the distance. "Any secluded beaches?" asked Manuel. "There is the Praia do Mole, a nudist beach", replied Fernando, "but it's too accessible from the highway. If you really want complete solitude, then you have to walkthe half hour through the woods from this turn-off--he showed us aside road— "to Lagoinhado Leste. Some say this is the best beach in Brazil, better than Ceara's Jericoacoara, and it's so difficult to get to that it will stay that way for years to come". At Pantano do Sul the fishermen were dragging their nets in. The catch is so abundant in these South Atlantic waters that the whole village participates in the haul, rushing afterwards to pick up the fish that are flapping for dear life. You can pick up yours—although ifyou haven't helped, your action is frowned upon—and give it to a restaurant to grill straight away. I walked up close. Some fish were already cut in half. "Sharks?" I asked a tranquil local who ignored the commotion mending his nets. He looked so old, he had probably assisted Lord Cochrane personally. "No", he said. -Dolphins". "They don't get entangled in the nets?" The old man frowned incomprehensibly. "Why should they?", he replied. Of course. Small scale fishing—ecologically sound. (For a more detailed account see Brazzil on line at JohnM is a computer programmer and occasional journalist working in London, England using his earnings to travel between contracts. A fluent Portuguese speaker, he has traversed the whole of Brazil from Manaus to Porto Alegre and from Recife to the Pan tanal sampling the life and history in the course of four separate journeys. This is an extract from his extensive Brazilian travelogue, (currently seeking publisher) which includes numerous fine pictures, in http:// His personal site is in http:// The author can be contacted at iohn(&


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Brazzil - Year 14 - Number 193 - April 2002  

Brazzil - Year 14 - Number 193 - April 2002