Brazilian Culture Essay

2669 words - 11 pages

By living in the United States of America, most of us are daily witnesses to the differences of cultures. From European to Mexican to Swedish cultures, you name it, Americans see it all, hear it all, and even taste it all. But we don’t always get a close look into other cultures—sometimes they just cross our paths. However, it is still important for us to learn about be knowledgeable about other cultures. Once such culture that has much to be learned from is the culture in Brazil. Brazilian culture is perhaps one of the most interesting cultures to learn about because it is so rich and diverse. Brazil alone is separated into five different regions which all encompass different customs and cultural aspects. (10) The following is an account of many aspects of the Brazilian culture and sources to help you learn more about the marvelous Brazil.

Applicable National Standards for Geography

Through this study of Brazilian culture the reader will be able to use the National Standard, "Knows and understands that culture and experience influence people’s perceptions of places and experience." Through historical accounts, statistical facts, and cultural information the reader will gain his own perception of Brazil and the experiences one can have there. The differences discussed will also help him to, "Knows and understand the complexity of the earth’s cultural mosaic." As Americans it is so important for us to understand others differences and to accept them as additions and benefits to our society. By learning about another nation and its roots the reader will understand how wide our differences stretch and how much they bring us together.

Brazil at a Glance (6)

Full Country Name: Federal Republic of Brazil
Capital City: Brasilia
Area: 8,511,965 sq. km
Location: Eastern South America, bordering the Atlantic Ocean (click here to see a map)
Population: 158.7 million
Population growth rate: 1.28%
Language: Portuguese
Literacy: age 15 and over can read and write
Labor Force: 57 million
Religion: 90% Roman Catholic
Government: Federal Republic
President: Fernando Henrique Cardoso

Brief History of Brazil

Brazil, now the world’s fifth largest country, was discovered in 1500 by Portuguese navigator Pedro Alvares Cabral. The new colonists discovered that the land was ideal for growing sugar cane, and this quickly became the basis of Brazil’s economic development. Along with this growth came the use of African slaves used to work in the sugar cane plantations. Then, in the 1690’s gold was discovered in the Minas Gerais and it replaced sugar as the countries main export. In the 19th century coffee became the main export and economic staple for Brazil. Due to the abolition of slavery in Brazil in the year 1888, European immigration sky-rocketed as people came to work in the coffee-estates, called fazendas. (6) In 1889, the rule of Dom Pedro II (who had ruled for 49 years) came to an end as a...

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