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Old August 12th, 2014, 08:28 PM   #81
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It is the style of Brazilian cities that reminds people of African cities as shown. The modernism -its height, style, width of the streets etc is virtually identical.

The Europeans raped and destroyed the culture of the indigenous Brazilians, the few left are still losing their culture as we speak.

The Europeans built a gem in Rio, however, they lost power. The people who make up the biggest demographic in Brazil are black and mixed race black. It is their turn to eradicate the European colonialism as it does not represent them. Along with the descendants of various other races that make up Brazil, they have done a good job since the 1950's as the pictures show.

Portugal is a very bad example. Porto and Lisbon have plenty of 19C architecture left despite stupid demolitions.. they have not 'raped' their own culture. The reason Brazil did, is because the majority of Brazilians have more connection with African culture than Portuguese. Brazil was ruled by an elite when Rio was built, now it is ruled by the citizens.

The centres of Belo Horizonte, Goias etc have virtually no difference to Maputo and Luanda in Africa, but plenty of differences to Porto and Lisboa.

Lisbon and Porto:





Now tell me which are Brazil and which are Africa?











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Old August 12th, 2014, 09:28 PM   #82
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I'm born and raised in Brazil, and the ethnic diversity is not something that we use to divide each other, actually, the IBGE (our Census Bureau) when ask to brazilians to describe their color, more than 100 different answers were made, people saying that they are like "chocolate", "dulce de leche", "candle"... the point is, the race division that is very popular across the world, in Brazil is not that relevant, is really uncommon someone have to define their color/race for something during their life in Brazil (but now is changing with some racial programs of Government), because of this to describe their color they say chocolate before pardo (white+black) or candle before white, of course here is not a racial diversity paradise, but definitely race is not a divisor, but the money sure it is.

Sounds insane for me imagine my people destroying their historical buildings because of european colonialism, I mean, we do really make stupid things, but the reasons are others, since brazilians really bad planning urbanization, until Oscar Niemeyer army of modernist.

The cities with colonial architecture, still remain pretty much the same.
Ouro Preto - Minas Gerais




I'm sorry the off topic.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 09:42 PM   #83
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Firstly the western term 'mixed race' covers all the terms and types they use in Brazil to describe anything from light brown to chocolate colour to black..(moreno, moreno claro etc). I also live in Brazil most the year, BH, but I am not from Brazil. So I speak as someone looking in from the outside so to speak. I simply say what the modern Brazil reminds me of. I think of Africa. Same with the music, food (beans nonstop), funk and art etc.

I have been to Ouro Preto many times. I would never describe it as a city, but that is just me. Very pretty place, great atmosphere. I think it survived because no one cared once the capital was moved to BH. I have not been to Tiradentes or Diamantina but here they are very similar.

As to why Brazilian cities look African since the 1950s. I don't think their was a conscious effort to de-europeanise. I simply think the people who designed these cities were no longer in control. The people now on the councils, governments and planning (if there was any at times...) were the actual Brazilians. I believe subconsciously - as my pictures show, the place became Africanised architecturally. Oscar Niemeyer, RIP was a great architect, I visit many of his buildings including the Yaugh Club in Pampulha - not one of his more famous projects, but impressive nonetheless. However he does not represent Brazil. He probably represents the last of that type of modernism and planning in Brazil.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 09:45 PM   #84
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It is the style of Brazilian cities that reminds people of African cities as shown. The modernism -its height, style, width of the streets etc is virtually identical.

The Europeans raped and destroyed the culture of the indigenous Brazilians, the few left are still losing their culture as we speak.

The Europeans built a gem in Rio, however, they lost power. The people who make up the biggest demographic in Brazil are black and mixed race black. It is their turn to eradicate the European colonialism as it does not represent them. Along with the descendants of various other races that make up Brazil, they have done a good job since the 1950's as the pictures show.

Portugal is a very bad example. Porto and Lisbon have plenty of 19C architecture left despite stupid demolitions.. they have not 'raped' their own culture. The reason Brazil did, is because the majority of Brazilians have more connection with African culture than Portuguese. Brazil was ruled by an elite when Rio was built, now it is ruled by the citizens.

The centres of Belo Horizonte, Goias etc have virtually no difference to Maputo and Luanda in Africa, but plenty of differences to Porto and Lisboa
Your analysis does not make much sense.

The historic and current African cultural hubs in Brazil are in the north-east of the country, yet there are plenty of historical Portuguese colonial cities that were preserved there, while in the southern regions where the immigration during the 19th-20th centuries was mainly European, many have lost their historical heritage.

Also your examples of Maputo or Luanda are not the best because up until 1975 they were Portuguese colonies, so even their buildings from the 1950-60s were built under Portuguese rule.

The answer is much simpler. Bad urban planning from the cities' authorities.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 09:59 PM   #85
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Your analysis does not make much sense.

The historic and current African cultural hubs in Brazil are in the north-east of the country, yet there are plenty of historical Portuguese colonial cities that were preserved there, while in the southern regions where the immigration during the 19th-20th centuries was mainly European, many have lost their historical heritage.

Also your examples of Maputo or Luanda are not the best because up until 1975 they were Portuguese colonies, so even their buildings from the 1950-60s were built under Portuguese rule.

The answer is much simpler. Bad urban planning from the cities' authorities.
No, I picked Luana and Muputo on purpose, simple because that is what happens to former Portuguese cities with an african/mixed race element. I thought that would be obvious. Also I use the word city, something I would not use to describe a preserved town like OP.

As for the african cultural hubs, that is a term Brazilians use for where there are 1/ still a majority of black demographics compared to other parts of Brazil, 2/ where certain carnivals and cultural elements can be traced back to Africa.

I believe however, as an outsider, Brazilian culture, music, food and architecture has much in common with Africa outside these hubs as well as inside where it is more obvious. Having lived in Argentina it is really obvious to see, unless you don't want to look or think there is something negative about Africa, which I don't.

Brazil is a very beautiful country away from the urban centres. However, where there are people, usually the place looks ugly to European eyes. There is nothing wrong with that however, the Europeans were the invaders and the majority of Brazilians are mixed race with little to no Europeanism besides coffee and sports and of course the Portuguese language which was imposed on Brazil as most spoke Tupi - even when the Portuguese were in power.

Anyways I hope you are not offended, as many middle class Brazilians are extremely patriotic on forums. If it makes you feel better, I am well traveled and I still think the most beautiful women I have seen - in my life - are in Brazil. Also I love the food.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 10:23 PM   #86
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I am not Brazilian and don't worry I am not offended, we are just discussing.

There is no doubt that out of all countries in the Americas that have people with African descendant, Brazil is the one where genuine African culture has the most impacted the overall culture of the country.

But this is not the point, I somewhat really doubt that the reason for the destruction of the historical buildings has much to do with this rather than simple bad urban planning from the authorities and investors wanting return. Salvador de Bahia has a virtually perfectly preserved historical city and it has historically been a predominantly African city in terms of demographics. Sao Paolo on the other hand received a great number of European immigration during the 3rd and 4th immigration periods in Brazil, with currently 60% being considered as white and yet their historical city center has largely been destroyed.

Still not able to fully understanding your logic behind your examples of Luanda and Maputo and your explanation. Salvador de Bahia was built during Portuguese rule, while the majority of the population was of African heritage. Maputo was built during Portuguese rule, while the majority of the populaton was of African heritage. They simply had their growth during different centuries, hence different architectural influences.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 10:41 PM   #87
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Ok firstly, Salvador has not been preserved because the african demographic protected it. There was no money to redevlope like in Sao Paulo and Rio. Salvador is one of the poorest cities in Brazil and also lots of crime.

Ouro Preto was abandonned virtually after BH became capital so again, there was no impetus or money to redevelop.

Also the redevelopment in Sao Paulo and Rio were not africans tearing the place down and redeveloping. They were developed with poor planning and no consideration and the place looks a bit africanesque. BH more so. I believe it was a subconscious movement. Just as if the major demographic was Swedish descent instead of African it would have looked different again.

As for the demographics of Sao Paulo, many are moreno claro who identify as white in surveys. They would be seen as mixed race in Europe. Just as many Brazilians who identify as middle class would be classed as poor or lower middle class in European terms. Add to this, that just because someone is 'white' as you say, does not mean they think like someone educated in say Germany or Australia. The Brazilian education system is extremely poor, even by Latin American standards. It is ranked by the OECD below Chile, Mexico and Costa Rica...

As for you not understanding why Luanda and BH look very similar. They were both built by portuguese and changed after the local residents got in the councils. Now lets look at another city under portuguese rule that was also taken over by the locals who had no connection to africa but instead were asians. Tell me if you can spot the difference in cultures?









Now, where was this photo taken, Belo Horizonte or Africa?

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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:19 PM   #88
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But why on earth they would demolish those old building? its too cruel to be true..
Modernists run amok. It is really shocking and disgusting what they did there.


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The Europeans built a gem in Rio, however, they lost power. The people who make up the biggest demographic in Brazil are black and mixed race black. It is their turn to eradicate the European colonialism as it does not represent them. Along with the descendants of various other races that make up Brazil, they have done a good job since the 1950's as the pictures show.
Sorry but I have to strongly disagree here. Modernism is just as "European" as classical architecture. I think what happened in Brazil is the same thing that happened in Eastern Europe which was neither colonized or African in any way. But what they do have in common is, regime change, and the new idealistic rulers wanted to get rid of the "old" and bring in the "new". In fact the same attitude still prevails among modern young architects. Most architects today only want to design modern structures. Very few want to evolve on classicism and heavily criticize it as "kitsch", while they can't stop praising the "clean lines" and "beauty" of modernism. I like modernism in its proper place, but to destroy already existing gems, and to replace them by soulless monoliths is the ultimate "kitsch".
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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:22 PM   #89
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Hve you traveled to Brazil?

If what you say was the case, Buenos Aires should look like Sao Paulo/BH/Rio. But it doesn't. In fact Buenos Aires as any European would testify to, feels extremely European compared to Brazilian cities. That is because of demographics. Both have had stupid modernists, regimes, military governments and idiot planners hell bent on destruction of the old buildings. But Argentina has more of a European element than African.

Culture goes beyond bricks and stones, but is often reflected in it.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:23 PM   #90
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Now, where was this photo taken, Belo Horizonte or Africa?

image hosted on flickr
Or Russia, or Romania, or Japan, or South Korea? You can find "this street" in any of those countries and more. Your specific anger towards Portuguese and Africans is making you miss the bigger picture.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:26 PM   #91
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Firstly the western term 'mixed race' covers all the terms and types they use in Brazil to describe anything from light brown to chocolate colour to black..(moreno, moreno claro etc). I also live in Brazil most the year, BH, but I am not from Brazil. So I speak as someone looking in from the outside so to speak. I simply say what the modern Brazil reminds me of. I think of Africa. Same with the music, food (beans nonstop), funk and art etc.

I have been to Ouro Preto many times. I would never describe it as a city, but that is just me. Very pretty place, great atmosphere. I think it survived because no one cared once the capital was moved to BH. I have not been to Tiradentes or Diamantina but here they are very similar.

As to why Brazilian cities look African since the 1950s. I don't think their was a conscious effort to de-europeanise. I simply think the people who designed these cities were no longer in control. The people now on the councils, governments and planning (if there was any at times...) were the actual Brazilians. I believe subconsciously - as my pictures show, the place became Africanised architecturally. Oscar Niemeyer, RIP was a great architect, I visit many of his buildings including the Yaugh Club in Pampulha - not one of his more famous projects, but impressive nonetheless. However he does not represent Brazil. He probably represents the last of that type of modernism and planning in Brazil.
I won't take it further, you even reject brazilians from early XX century because they made cities influenced by French architecture, back then Brazil was already enjoying more than 70 years of independence.

It's your point of view, that's ok, I'm really used to people condense my country in 1 or 2 cities, or one state or tipe of forest, but it's new for me Oscar Niemeyer does not represent Brazil, so thanks for this one.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:30 PM   #92
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I wouldn't be able to comment on the subconscious decisions of people, nor their self-identification.

Why then Lima has retained the great majority of its historical colonial center, yet it is the economic heart of the Peru where the population is mainly mixed with heavy Native influences? Why did Shanghai keep the Bund fully preserved? Why did Alger maintain its classical French city center? etc...

As for Macao, its historical center was preserved and introduced in the UNESCO world heritage list, after it got transfered under Chinese patronage.

The modernist drive in southern Brazil is no different than anywhere in the world, even London and Manchester saw plenty of perfectly fine architectural gems get destroyed to be replaced with some average modernist buildings during the 1960s and 1970s.

There were modernist drives in Eastern Europe to destroy all the old buildings because they represebted the old ways and the bourgeousie, even though the same people lived in the country.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:33 PM   #93
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I was not talking about the demolition of old architecture, I was talking about what it was replaced with and where that particular style of modernism is most seen. I suppose when you are well traveled, those who are not will always have difficulty with what you say if they are sensitive. The best thing is to travel imo. Then perhaps the difference between London modernism and Brazilian will be as obvious as night and day, rather than cryptically similar before you travel to those countries.

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Or Russia, or Romania, or Japan, or South Korea? You can find "this street" in any of those countries and more. Your specific anger towards Portuguese and Africans is making you miss the bigger picture.
I think we should leave it here.

I have no anger towards Portuguese or Africans. Or any other race. But I suppose if I had a lesser education and was patriotic, any criticism of the architecture of 'my country' could only be made by a racist! There is no other explanation. Go in peace,

Lets move on.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:36 PM   #94
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If that was the case, Buenos Aires should look like Sao Paulo. But it doesn't. In fact Buenos Aires as any European would testify to, feels extremely European compared to Brazilian cities.

Culture goes beyond bricks and stones, but is often reflected in it.
Reality is not black and white. Things don't happen either because of this, or that. There are no "dualities" in reality, that's a human illusion. Possible causes are always in the thousands with many variables in the mix, and you can't say that it did not happen in Buenos Aries because it is not Portuguese and African, so there proof. You are obsessed with Portuguese colonialism which clearly had some effect, but the fact that Brazilian cities developed at the same time, and in the same way as some African, BUT MOSTLY, the SAME as Asian, Russian, and generally Eastern European cities, than the common denominator is most likely communism/socialism, and more importantly the extreme and rapid change from agrarian to industrialized. Western Europe industrialized in the 19th century before modernism. Eastern Europe, Asia, and the Americas industrialized in the 20th, when modern architecture and new "faster" building technologies were available. These are the main causes, not "Africanism" or "colonialism".
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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:39 PM   #95
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I was not talking about the demolition of old architecture, I was talking about what it was replaced with and where that particular style of modernism is most seen. I suppose when you are well traveled, those who are not will always have difficulty. The best thing is to travel imo. Than perhaps the difference between London modernism and Brazilian will be as obvious as night and day, rather than cryptically similar before you travel to those countries.



I think we should leave it here.

I have no anger towards portuguese or Africans. Or any other race. But I suppose if I had a lesser education and was patriotic, any criticism of the architecture of 'my country' could only be made by a racist! There is no other explanation. Go in peace,

Lets move on.
Don't worry, I was not implying racism, just saying you are looking at too small of a picture. You were only comparing Brazil and Africa, or other Portuguese colonial areas, when in fact this kind of thing happened everywhere, and probably worse in Eastern Europe than even in Brasil.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:42 PM   #96
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Buenos Aires is different to Brazilian cities not because of the butterfly effect but because the people in charge had a different style of urban planning and modernism. Those who rebuilt Brazil made the cities look more like Maputo aesthetically.

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Reality is not black and white. Things don't happen either because of this, or that. There are no "dualities" in reality, that's a human illusion. Possible caucuses are always in the thousands with many variables in the mix, and you can't say that it did not happen in Buenos Aries because it is not Portuguese and African, so there proof. You are obsessed with Portuguese colonialism which clearly had some effect, but the fact that Brazilian cities developed at the same time, and in the same way as some African, BUT MOSTLY, the SAME as Asian, Russian, and generally Eastern European cities, than the common denominator is most likely communism/socialism, and more importantly the extreme and rapid change from agrarian to industrialized. Western Europe industrialized in the 19th century before modernism. Eastern Europe, Asia, and the Americas industrialized in the 20th, when modern architecture and new "faster" building technologies were available. These are the main causes, not "Africanism" or "colonialism".
I am afraid the 5 Brazilian cities I have visited bear no resemblance to Eastern Europe, that is a ridiculous ultra liberal fallacy. There seems to be a fascination with something having African influence being negative? London, Eastern Europe etc have little in common with Brazilian cities, other than much of the old was destroyed. The differences are in what replaced the old. The type of modernism, height, street furniture, materials used, street culture etc. BH has more in common with Maputo than Kiev I am afraid. That should not be negative, but obvious. However if you feel Maputo is bad or ugly or whatever, that is different, than yes, everything is the same, we can all sleep comfortably now!

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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:44 PM   #97
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I was not talking about the demolition of old architecture, I was talking about what it was replaced with and where that particular style of modernism is most seen. I suppose when you are well traveled, those who are not will always have difficulty with what you say if they are sensitive. The best thing is to travel imo. Then perhaps the difference between London modernism and Brazilian will be as obvious as night and day, rather than cryptically similar before you travel to those countries.
Sure.

If you are so well travelled explain the examples I provided above taking your into consideration your de-Europeanization theory.

Your theory just does not hold ground. The issue is not African culture, nor a will to de-Europeanize but rather simply different approaches to urban development.
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Old August 12th, 2014, 11:47 PM   #98
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What that London and Rio have the same modernism? Just visit both cities, a child could spot the obvious differences. The places look and feel completely different and not because of the climate, it is because of the differences in the humans who redeveloped the two places, their education and their culture.

You strike me as someone from a former socialist state with your imagination concerning human individualities. I met someone similar in Lithuania once. I also get the distinct and clear feeling, despite taking this argument as far as you can, you have actually not visited Brazil, or Buenos Aires. I would recommend visiting both. Seeing Brazil is an absolute education.
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Old August 13th, 2014, 12:12 AM   #99
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I was talking about my examples regarding Lima, Alger and Shanghai, but nevermind.
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Old August 13th, 2014, 05:58 AM   #100
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I'm born and raised in Brazil, and the ethnic diversity is not something that we use to divide each other, actually, the IBGE (our Census Bureau) when ask to brazilians to describe their color, more than 100 different answers were made, people saying that they are like "chocolate", "dulce de leche", "candle"... the point is, the race division that is very popular across the world, in Brazil is not that relevant, is really uncommon someone have to define their color/race for something during their life in Brazil (but now is changing with some racial programs of Government), because of this to describe their color they say chocolate before pardo (white+black) or candle before white, of course here is not a racial diversity paradise, but definitely race is not a divisor, but the money sure it is.

Sounds insane for me imagine my people destroying their historical buildings because of european colonialism, I mean, we do really make stupid things, but the reasons are others, since brazilians really bad planning urbanization, until Oscar Niemeyer army of modernist.

The cities with colonial architecture, still remain pretty much the same.
Ouro Preto - Minas Gerais




I'm sorry the off topic.
Wow! absolutely beautiful town!

Although the destruction of Rio and Sao Paulo is disgusting, there's still many towns that's still gorgeaus.... big cities tend to be the main victims in many countries...
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