Department of Spanish and Portuguese
Department of Spanish and Portuguese

Lorraine Leu


Associate ProfessorPh.D., King's College, University of London

Lorraine Leu

Contact

Biography


Lorraine Leu is a native of Trinidad and Tobago of Afro-descendant and indigenous heritage. She earned her PhD at King’s College, University of London, and taught at the University of Bristol, England for eight years before arriving at UT in January of 2011.  Since 2000 she has been an editor of the Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies. She is the author of Brazilian Popular Music: Caetano Veloso and the Regeneration of Tradition (Ashgate, 2006), which was selected by The Year’s Work in Critical and Cultural Theory as one of the most important books in the field (2008). Her current research project examines the production of space in Rio de Janeiro in terms of both urban planners and the lived experience of racialized/ethnic groups and individuals. It makes transparent the attempts at erasure of racial and ethnic difference at a formative moment of Rio’s urban history in the 1920s. Additionally, it considers the geopolitical subjectivities of those who engaged in their own mappings of their city that frequently challenged official demarcations and domination of space.

 
Dr Leu holds a joint appointment with the Lozano Long Institute for Latin American Studies (LLILAS), and teaches courses on Brazilian culture, urban Brazil, and theories and issues in Latin Americanism. 

Courses


ILA 388 • Brazilian Cultural Theory

44890 • Spring 2016
Meets TH 9:00AM-12:00PM BEN 1.118
(also listed as LAS 392P)

Description:

This seminar has three goals:

  • introduce some of the most influential topics and theories that have informed contemporary scholarship on Brazilian cultural production;
  • introduce research approaches and sources;
  • help students develop analytical thinking and writing skills. 

These goals will be met through a combination of reading, discussion, presentations, and research exercises.

The course will introduce students to how discussions surrounding certain ideas have resonated through the work of different scholars, and impacted the conceptualization of Brazilian society and culture. The course will equip you with some of the theoretical tools and analytical skills necessary for developing an original research idea that dialogues with theories discussed in the course. By the end of the seminar, you should be able to:

  • engage actively in critical discussions of the scholarly literature;
  • analytically review a topic of relevance to your research interests;
  • develop an original research proposal.

Requirements and grading:

Your grade will be based on:

  • active participation in class discussion and class presentations (20%)
  • a proposal for an original research project of 7-10 pages double spaced (+ Bibliography), (40%)
  • a 15 minute conference paper developed from your prospectus/ or an annotated bibliography of at least 20 items/ or a literature review of at least 12 items on a topic related to your research interests (8 pages double spaced, 40%).

Classes and student participation will be in English, Portuguese, or Spanish. Many of the readings are in Portuguese.

Course Schedule

Week 1 (Jan 17):

Introduction to the course.

Week 2 (Jan 24):

Theorizing the nation: Modernity and Modernism

Andrade, Oswald de.  “Manifesto Antropófago,” in Obras Completas de Oswald de Andrade. (Rio de Janeiro: Civilização Brasileira, 1978), 27-34.

Schwarz, Roberto. “A carroça, o bonde e o poeta modernista,” in Que Horas São. (São Paulo: Companhia das Letras, 1987), 11-28. Trans. into English as “The Cart, the Tram and the Modernist Poet,” in Misplaced Ideas. (London/New York: Verso, 1992), 108-125.

Resende, Beatriz. “Modernism: The Canonised Revolution,” in Through the Kaleidoscope: The Experience of Modernity in Latin America. (London/New York: Verso, 2000), 199-218.

Martins, José de Souza. “The Hesitations of the Modern and the Contradictions of Modernity in Brazil,” in Through the Kaleidoscope: The Experience of Modernity in Latin America. (London/New York: Verso, 2000), 248-274.

Moriconi, Italo. “The Postmodern Debate: Brazilian Force Fields – An Introductory Overview (Working Paper),” Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies 14.3 (2005): 355-370.

* In class we will listen to the songs “Coisas Nossas” (1932), by Noel Rosa, and “Jóia” (1974) by Caetano Veloso.

Week 3 (Jan 31)

Imagining the nation: Racial democracy

Freyre, Gilberto. Chapter 4, “O escravo negro na vida sexual e da família do brasileiro,” in Casa Grande e Senzala. (Rio de Janeiro: Editora Record, 28ª Edição, 1933/1992), 283-379. Trans. “The Negro Slave in the Sexual and Family Life of the Brazilian,” in The Masters and the Slaves. (New York: Knopf, 1933/1946), 278-403.

Cleary, David. “Race, Nationalism and Social Theory in Brazil. Rethinking Gilberto Freyre,” Seminar Paper, David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies, Harvard University.

Needell, Jeffrey, “Identity, Race, Gender and Modernity in the Origins of Gilberto Freyre’s Oeuvre,” American Historical Review Vol. 100 (1995): 51-77.

Young, Robert C. “O Atlântico lusotropical: Gilberto Freyre e a transformação do hibridismo,” in Gilberto Freyre e os estudos latino-americanos, ed. Joshua Lund and Malcolm McNee. (Pittsburg, PA: Série Críticas, Instituto Internacional de Literatura Iberoamericana, Univ. of Pittsburg, 2006), 99-122.

 Week 4 (Feb 7)

Culture and politics in an era of revolution

Estevam, Carlos. “For a Popular Revolutionary Art”, CPC (Centro Popular de Cultura) manifesto, in Brazilian Cinema, ed. Randal Johnson and Robert Stam. (New York: Columbia University Press, 1995), 59-63.

Rocha, Glauber. “A estética da fome” manifesto, trans. “An Esthetic of Hunger,” in Brazilian Cinema, ed. Randal Johnson and Robert Stam. (New York: Columbia University Press, 1995), 69-71.

Schwarz, Roberto. “Culture and politics in Brazil, 1964-69,” in Misplaced Ideas. (London/New York: Verso, 1992), 126-159.

Freire, Paulo. Chapter 1, Pedagogy of the Oppressed. New York: Herder and Herder, 1970),27-56.

Kirkendall, Andrew J. “Entering History: Paulo Freire and the Politics of the Brazilian Northeast, 1958-1964,” Luso-Brazilian Review 41.1 (2004): 168-189.

* In class we will watch a clip of Deus e o diabo na terra do sol (1962), Glauber Rocha, and listen to the live recording of Caetano Veloso’s “É proibido proibir” (1968).

Special Session: Introduction to Developing a Research Proposal: Creating a Problem Statement   

Przeworski, Adam and Frank Solomon, “On the Art of Writing Proposals,” Social Science Research Council, 1988.

Week 5 (Feb 14)

Postcoloniality em português I

 Schwarz, Roberto. “Nacional por subtração,” in Que horas são? (São Paulo: Companhia das Letras, 1987), 29-48.

Schwarz, Roberto. “Misplaced Ideas,” in Misplaced Ideas. (London/New York: Verso, 1992), 19-32.

Rosa, João Guimarães. “A terceira margem do rio”, in Primeiras Estórias. (Rio de Janeiro: Nova Fronteira, 1988), 32-37.

Santiago, Silviano. “O entre-lugar do discurso latinoamericano,” in Uma literatura nos trópicos. (São Paulo: Editora Perspectiva, 1978), 11-28.

Lopes, Denilson. “From the Space In-Between to the Transcultural”, Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies, 16.3 (2007): 359-369.

Sevcenko, Nicolau. (1992) “In Search of the Third Bank of the River: Reflections of the Burden of the Past in Contemporary Brazilian Culture”, Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies, 1.1 (1992): 69-86.

* In class we will listen to “A terceira margem rio” (1991), Milton Nascimento and Caetano Veloso.

Week 6 (Feb 21)

Postcoloniality em português II

Cesarino, Letícia Maria Costa da Nóbrega. “Brazilian postcoloniality and South South cooperation: a view from Anthropology”, Portuguese Cultural Studies, 4 (2012): 85-113.

Costa, Claudia de Lima. “Feminismo e tradução cultural: sobre a colonialidade do gênero e a descolonização do saber”, Portuguese Cultural Studies, 4 (2012): 41-65.

Shohat, Ella and Robert Stam. “‘Brazil is not traveling enough’: on postcolonial theory and analogous counter-currents,” Interview by Emanuelle Santos and Patricia Schor,Portuguese Cultural Studies, 4 (2012): 13-40.

Santos, Boaventura de Sousa. "Between Prospero and Caliban: Colonialism, postcolonialism and interidentity", Review (Fernand Braudel Center), 29.2 (2006): 143-166.

Week 7 (Feb 28)

Critical race theory:

Nascimento, Abdias. “Genocide: The Social Lynching of Africans and their Descendants in Brazil,” in Brazil Mixture or Massacre: Essays in the Genocide of a Black People. (Dover, MA: Majority Press, 1989), 57-94.

Alves, Jaime. “Dialectics of the African Diaspora: The glocality of race and resistance in the Brazilian economy of violence,” Cultural Dynamics, 24 (2012): 31 -57.

Goldstein, Donna. Chapter 3 of Laughter Out of Place: Race, Class, Violence and Sexuality in a Rio Shantytown. (Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 2001), 102-135. E-book available via UT Libraries.

Sheriff, Robin. “Talk: Discourses on Color and Race,” in Dreaming Equality: Color, Race and Racism in Urban Brazil. (New Brunswick/New Jersey/ London: Rutgers University Press, 2001), 29-58.

Week 8 (March 7)  *NO READINGS THIS WEEK*

Developing a Research Proposal: Problem Statement Workshop

By now you will have written a draft of your problem statement for a potential research paper or project. Your problem statement should contain a statement of the central question to be addressed, a statement indicating the significance or impact of the research, a brief overview of the methods you would use to conduct the research, and the expected outcomes or results. For guidelines on what makes a good statement, see the Appendix, and refer to your notes from Feb 7th’s class. PLEASE BRING A PRINT COPY OF YOUR PROBLEM STATEMENT TO CLASS for the Problem Statement Workshop. Your problem statement should be posted on the Blackboard discussion forum by 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday March 5.

NO CLASS MARCH 14 FOR SPRING BREAK

Week 9 (March 21)

Gender/feminism

Carneiro, Sueli. “Enegrecer o feminismo: a situação da mulher negra na América Latina a partir de uma perspectiva de gênero,” in Racismos Contemporâneos, eds. Ashoka Empreendedores Sociais, Takano Cidadania/Grupo Takano. (Rio de Janeiro: Takano Ed., 2003), 49-58.

Thayer, Millie. “Traveling Feminisms: From Embodied Women to Gendered

Citizenship,” in Global Ethnography: Forces, Connections, and Imaginations in a

Postmodern World, eds. Michael Burawoy, Joseph A. Blum, Sheba George, Zsuzsa Gille, Teresa Gowan, Lynne Haney, Maren Klawiter, Steven H. Lopez, Sea´n O´ Riain, Millie Thayer. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000).

Thayer, Millie. “Transnational Feminism: Reading Joan Scott in the Brazilian Sertão,” Ethnography 2.2 (2001): 243–271.

Costa, Claudia da Lima. “Lost (and found?) in translation: Feminisms in hemispheric dialogue,” Latino Studies, 4 (2006): 62–78.

Lopes, Denilson.  “Aventuras no pós-gênero em primeira pessoa,” in Poéticas e políticas feministas. (Florianópolis: Editora Mulheres, 2004):175-186.

Week 10 (March 28)

Cultures of the real

Jaguaribe, Beatriz. “Modernidade cultural e estéticas do realismo” LEAVE OUT NEXT TIME; and “O choque do real e a experiência urbana: cartões postais da metrópole híbrida,” in O choque do real: estética, mídia e cultura. (Rio de Janeiro: Rocco, 2007).

Ivana Bentes. “Subjective Displacements and ‘Reserves of Life’,” Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies, 20:1 (2011): 5-19.

Medeiros, Bianca Freire. “A trademark and a tourist destination”; and “To be or not to be a favela tourist,” in Touring Poverty. (Abingdon and New York: Routledge, 2013), 55-73; 111-132. Available online at UT libraries website.

* In class we will view and discuss clips from O prisioneiro atrás da grade de ferro (2003), Paulo Sacramento, and “Babilônia 2000” (1999), Eduardo Coutinho.

Week 11 (April 4)

Literature Review Workshop

For this week students have 10 minutes each to present the main arguments/ concepts/ theories of 4 or 5 pieces (articles or books) that are influential on their research project. Students should link these main ideas back to their own projects, to show how their own research might dialogue with, or further the ideas of the articles/books chosen.

Week 12 (April 11)

Cultural citizenship

Dagnino, Evelina. "We All Have Rights, But... Contesting Concepts of Citizenship in Brazil." Inclusive Citizenship: Meanings and Expressions, eds. Naila Kabeer and Ramya Subrahmanian.London: Zed Books (2005).

Bentes, Ivana. “Collaborative Networks and the Productive Precariat,” forthcoming in Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies.

Jaguaribe, Beatriz, and Maurício Lissovsky. “The Visible and the Invisibles: Photography and Social Imaginaries in Brazil,” Public Culture, 21.1 (2009): 175-209. [Also published in O choque do real (2007).]

Yúdice, George. 2003. “Parlaying Culture into Social Justice”. The expediency of Culture: the uses of Culture in the Global Era. Durham, NC, Duke University Press, 133-159. Available as an electronic resource on UT libraries website.

* We will watch a clip in class from Favela Rising (2005), Zimbalist & Mochary.

Week 13 (April 18)

Proposal draft workshop

For this session we may divide into two groups and each group will read members’ drafts before class, so we can all offer supportive and constructive critique in class. Each student will present for NO MORE THAN 10 minutes and have up to 10 minutes of feedback from the group and me. I propose that we split into two groups and that Group 1 meets from 1:00 til 2:40, followed by a 20 minute break; then Group 2 meets from 3:00 til 4:40. Students will be required to post their drafts on Blackboard by 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday April 16.

Week 14 (April 25)

Student presentations of research proposals or conference papers

Each student will have 15 minutes to present their proposal. If you have decided to write a conference paper for your second course assessment, you may present this instead, but you must agree this with me in advance, and I will meet with you individually to give you comments on draft versions ahead of the presentation. Students presenting this week submit their completed proposals the following Monday April 29, by midnight, and their annotated bibliography/ or literature review/ or conference paper in the final class on May 2.

Week 15 (May 2)

Student presentations of research proposals or conference papers

Each student will have 15 minutes to present their proposal. If you have decided to write a conference paper for your second course assessment, you may present this instead, but you must agree this with me in advance, and I will meet with you individually to give you comments on draft versions ahead of the presentation. Students presenting this week submit their completed proposals the following Monday May 6, by midnight, and their annotated bibliography/ or literature review/ or conference paper on May 9.

 

Appendix

Research Proposal Guidelines:

A proposal explains a research project you intend to carry out.  It consists of a problem statement (i.e., primary research question(s), the context and significance of the research (i.e., where it fits in a particular field and why what you propose to do is important), a brief literature review, discussion of the methodology you will use, and a statement of the results you expect. 

To write a proposal, you must think around the topic that interests you, and formulate a researchable problem or question.  To get to this point, you should do some general background reading on the subject or area. Once you have formulated a research question, you must become familiar with the research already done on your topic so you can explain how your question and/or research approach differs, and what you expect your completed study to add to existing knowledge on the subject.

Purpose: In this assignment students will

  1. Design a high quality, peer-reviewed proposal that can either be used for funding applications, or may eventually form the basis of the proposal submitted to your Comprehensive Exams Committee.
  2. Conduct preliminary secondary source research regarding topic of choice.
  3. Evaluate the methods, biases, and limitations of intended research.

Format:

1. Initial problem statement: 2 paragraph maximum*

a. Concise statement of the central question to be addressed

b. Relevance/significance/impact of research

c. Consideration of methods and limitations  

d. Theoretical/disciplinary approach

e. Expected outcomes or results

2. Bibliography: 20 sources (does not need to be annotated), consistent style

3. Research Proposal

a. Introduction: Central question and relevance

b. Theoretical/disciplinary approach

c. Consideration of methods and limitations

d. Expected outcomes or results

4. Proposal presentation: 15 minutes

a.Final problem statement

b.Historical context and relevance

c. Theoretical/ Disciplinary approach, including biases and limitations

d. Methods

e. Expected Results

5. Peer feedback and evaluation

* Your Problem Statement should aim for: 

Conciseness/ Clarity

  • Concise (no more than 2 paragraphs) and clear throughout

Impact/ Justification

  • Strong, clear justification for research
  • Problem is significant and timely

Methods/ Limitations

  • Selection of methods is appropriate and complete
  • Existing limitations of research/methods clearly identified

Outcomes/ Results

  • Expected outcomes are clearly articulated and are consistent with previous description of research (methods/impact)

 

 

 

 

LAS 384 • Prosmnr: Curr Iss In Lat Amer

39665 • Fall 2015
Meets M 1:00PM-4:00PM SRH 1.313

Restricted enrollment; contact the department for permission to register for this class.

POR 350F • Contemporary Brazilian Film

45125 • Fall 2015
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM MEZ 1.202
(also listed as LAS 370P)

Taught in Portuguese. Explores recent filmmaking in Brazil as an art form and as a method of articulating important aspects and concerns of contemporary Brazilian society. Topics include cinema and development, modernization, national and regional identity, race, social exclusion, violence, and neoliberalism.

PRC 320E • Modern Brazil

45480 • Spring 2015
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM BEN 1.102
(also listed as LAS 328)

What does modernity mean in Brazil? What is it like to live in a modern Brazilian metropolis? What has been the impact of a century of modernization projects on the country's cities? These are the main questions that we will be tackling over the course of the semester, and we'll be thinking through them in relation to the country's race and class relations, its urbanization history, its ideologies of nation, its developmentalist drives, and its cultural politics.

POR 375 • Popular Music In Brazil

46740 • Fall 2014
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM BEN 1.102
(also listed as LAS 370P)

Taught in Portuguese. Latin American Studies 322 and 370P may not both be counted unless the topics vary.

ILA 388 • Brazl Urban Stds: Survey Field

46824 • Spring 2014
Meets T 1:00PM-4:00PM BEN 2.104
(also listed as LAS 381)

Description:

The main goal of this seminar is to explore material that addresses the production of urban space in Brazil. Our readings, film viewings and discussions will focus on spatial realities, projects, and identities in relation to cultural politics and social structures. Together we will research the field and compile an annotated bibliography of scholarly works that focus on themes such as urbanization and modernity; race, class and urban space; and meanings and representations of city spaces. The final project for this course will be a literature review to which all members of the class will contribute. Our review will engage critically with key arguments, concepts and debates. The course will equip you with the theoretical and analytical tools for developing an original research idea that dialogues with concepts discussed in the seminar.

Requirements and grading:

Your grade will be based on:

active participation in class discussion (30%)

contribution to annotated bibliography (30%)

contribution to literature review (40%)

Classes will be taught in Portuguese and participation may be in Portuguese, Spanish or English. Students must be able to read academic Portuguese.

Key texts include:

Bretas, Marcos. 1997. Ordem na cidade: o exercício cotidiano da autoridade policial no Rio de Janeiro, 1907-1930. Rio de Janeiro: Rocco.

Del Rio, Vicente and William Siembieda, eds. 2009. Contemporary Urbanism in Brazil: Beyond Brasilia. Gainesville: University of Florida Press.

Freire- Medeiros, Bianca.  2013. Touring Poverty. Oxon/New York: Routledge.

Oliveira, Ney dos Santos. 1996. ‘Favelas and Ghettos: Race and Class in Rio de Janeiro and New York City.’ Latin American Perspectives, 23 (4): 71-89.

Rolnik, Raquel. 1989. “Territorios negrosnas cidades brasileiras: etnicidade e cidade em São Paulo e Rio de Janeiro." Estudos Afro-Asiáticos, 17: 29-41. Re-published in 2000 on:

http://www.usp.br/srhousing/rr/docs/territorios_negros_nas_cidades_brasileiras.pdf

Velloso, Mônica Pimenta. 2004. A cultura das ruas do Rio de Janeiro (1900-1930): mediações, linguagens e espaço. Rio de Janeiro: Edições Casa de Rui Barbosa.

POR 380 • Brazilian Cultural Theory

46235 • Spring 2013
Meets TH 1:00PM-4:00PM CBA 4.338
(also listed as LAS 392P)

Description

This seminar has three goals:

  • introduce some of the most influential topics and theories that have informed contemporary scholarship on Brazilian cultural production;
  • introduce research approaches and sources;
  • help students develop analytical thinking and writing skills. 

These goals will be met through a combination of reading, discussion, presentations, and research exercises.

The course will introduce students to how discussions surrounding certain ideas have resonated through the work of different scholars, and impacted the conceptualization of Brazilian culture. The course will equip you with some basic theoretical tools and analytical skills necessary for successful participation in graduate seminars and for developing an original research idea that dialogues with theories discussed in the course. By the end of the seminar, you should be able to:

  • engage actively in critical discussions of the scholarly literature;
  • analytically review a topic of relevance to your research interests;
  • develop an original research proposal.

Requirements and grading:

Your grade will be based on: active participation in class discussion (20%); a prospectus for an original research project (20%); and a conference paper developed from your prospectus (40%).

Classes will be taught in English.

Key Background Texts:

BOSI, Alfredo. 1992. Dialética da colonização. São Paulo: Companhia das Letras. Published in English as Colony, Cult and Culture (2008).

CÂNDIDO, Antonio. 1965/2010. Literatura e sociedade: estudos de teoria e história literária. Rio de Janeiro: Academia Brasileira de Letras: Ouro sobre Azul. (Published in English as On Literature and Society. 1995).

LOPES, Denilson. “From the Space In-Between to the Transcultural”. Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies, 16.3, 2007, 359-369.

ORTIZ, Renato. 1985. Cultura brasileira e identidade nacional, São Paulo: Brasiliense.

1988. A moderna tradição brasileira.São Paulo: Brasiliense.

SANTIAGO, Silviano. 2001. The space in-between: Essays on Latin American culture. Ed. Ana Lúcia Gazzola and trans. Tom Burns, Ana Lúcia Gazzola and Gareth Williams. Durham: Duke University Press.

SCHWARZ, Roberto. Misplaced Ideas: Essays on Brazilian Culture. London/New York: Verso, 1992.

POR 381 • Cin/Criminality/Violnc: Brazil

45935 • Spring 2012
Meets TH 1:00PM-4:00PM BEN 1.118
(also listed as LAS 392P)

DESCRIPTION:

81% of Brazil’s population of 190 million is urban. This course considers how contemporary city dwellers construct identities and how these are represented in film. We will be taking as our point of departure two assumptions made by recent work in cultural theory: firstly, that cultural identity is spatial – constituted in the spaces and spatial practices that define our lives; and secondly, that cultural identity is political – a “battleground”, as Stuart Hall put it, of control and contestation between the state, the media, the culture industries and individuals over how we imagine who we are. The course will look at identities formed through gender, race and class in the context of the urban environment. Our primary focus will be on Rio de Janeiro, and through our analysis of films and readings taken from film studies, spatial theory, cultural geography, sociology, and cultural anthropology, we will explore the intense spatiality of conflict over identity; how cultural struggles can threaten or transform political, social and economic boundaries; and how people negotiate the problems of segregation, crime and violence in the city.

REQUIREMENTS AND GRADING

Students do not need to have prior experience studying film. You will learn about the language of film and we will analyze films clips together as a class throughout the semester. Your grade will be based on: active participation in class discussion (25%); a 4-5 page commentary on a clip of your choosing from one of the films studied on the course (25%); an 8 page journal articles review [4 articles] (25%); and an 8 page commentary on disciplines and methods in urban studies (25%).

Classes will be taught in English. Class participation and the final paper may be in Portuguese, Spanish or English.

FILMS TO BE STUDIED ON THE COURSE INCLUDE:

A Hora da Estrela. Suzana Amaral (1985)

Babilônia 2000. Eduardo Coutinho (2001)

Ônibus 174. José Padilha (2002)

Cidade de Deus. Fernando Meirelles (2002)

Estamira. Marcos Prado (2004)

Tropa de Elite. José Padilha (2007)

Um Lugar ao Sol. Gabriel Mascaro (2009)

Cinco Vezes Favela - Agora por Nós Mesmos. Vários (2010)

POR 381 • Cinema/Cul Ident Urban Brazil

46535 • Spring 2011
Meets TH 1:00PM-4:00PM UTC 1.136
(also listed as LAS 392P)

COURSE TITLE: Cinema & Cultural Identity in Urban Brazil

COURSE NUMBER: POR 380

INSTRUCTOR: Leu, Lorraine

DESCRIPTION:

81% of Brazil?s population of 190 million is urban. This course considers how contemporary city dwellers construct identities and how these are represented in film. We will be taking as our point of departure two assumptions made by recent work in cultural theory: firstly, that cultural identity is spatial ? constituted in the spaces and spatial practices that define our lives; and secondly, that cultural identity is political ? a ?battleground?, as Stuart Hall put it, of control and contestation between the state, the media, the culture industries and individuals over how we imagine who we are. The course will look at identities formed through nation, gender, sexuality, race and class in the context of the urban environment. Our primary focus will be on Rio de Janeiro, and we will also consider case studies from São Paulo. Through our analysis of these films and supplementary reading on social history and spatial theory, we will explore the intense spatiality of conflict over identity; how cultural struggles can threaten or transform political, social and economic boundaries; and how people negotiate the problems of segregation, crime and violence in the city.

REQUIREMENTS AND GRADING:

Students do not need to have prior experience studying film. You will learn about the language of film and we will analyze films clips together as a class throughout the semester. Your grade will be based on: active class participation, including exercises such as leading class discussion (20%); a 2-3 page analysis of an aspect of urban or spatial theory (20%); a 2-3 page commentary on a clip of your choosing from one of the films studied, or another film to be agreed with the instructor (20%); and a final research paper (40%). Classes will be taught in Portuguese. Class participation and the final paper may be in Portuguese, Spanish or English.

FILMS TO BE STUDIED ON THE COURSE INCLUDE:

Berlim na Batucada. Luiz de Barros (1944, if available, currently being restored for re-release at the Museum of Modern Art, Rio de Janeiro)

A Grande Cidade. Carlos Diegues (1966)

Babilônia 2000. Eduardo Coutinho (2001)

Ônibus 174. José Padilha (2002)

Cidade de Deus. Fernando Meirelles (2002)

O Príncipe. Ugo Giorgetti (2002)

Antônia. Tata Amaral (2006)

Um Lugar ao Sol. Gabriel Mascaro (2009)

PRC 325E • Brazilian Studies

46453 • Spring 2011
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM BEN 1.118
(also listed as LAS 370P)

coming soon

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