During the 1990s Rio de Janeiro earned the epithet of 'divided city', an image underscored by the contrast between its upper-class buildings and nearby hillside 'favelas.' The city's cultural production, however, has been shaped by porous boundaries and multi-ethnic encounters. Drawing on a broad range of historical, theoretical and literary sources, Porous City generates new ways of understanding Rio's past, its role in the making of Brazilian culture, and its significance to key global debates about modernity and urban practices. This book offers an original perspective on Rio de Janeiro that focuses on the New City, one of the most compelling spaces in the history of modern cities. Once known as both a 'Little Africa' and as a 'Jewish Neighborhood,' the New City was an important reference for prominent writers, artists, pioneering social scientists and foreign visitors (from Christian missionaries to Orson Welles). It played a crucial role in foundational narratives of Brazil as 'the country of carnival' and as a 'racial democracy.' Going back to the neighborhood's creation by royal decree in 1811, this study sheds light on how initially marginalized practices -like samba music- became emblematic of national identity. A critical crossroads of Rio, the New City was largely razed for the construction of a monumental avenue during World War II. Popular musicians protested, but 'progress' in the automobile age had a price. The area is now being rediscovered due to developments spurred by the 2016 Olympics. At another moment of transition, Porous City revisits this fascinating metropolis.
Many South American films that use the popular road movie format to examine regional culture and attitudes, especially in Argentina and Brazil. Pinazza performs a careful cultural analysis of the films and investigates how road movies deal with narratives on nationhood whilst simultaneously inserting themselves in a transnational dialogue.
Of all the great innovations and intellectual achievements of mankind there is nothing that rivals the invention of counting and discovery of the number system. The way in which this discovery led to the development of abstract higher mathematics is the least of its merits, compared to the universal f- cination that the natural numbers hold for all people. Numbers are at the roots of magic, superstition, religion and science. Numerologists can int- pret great historical and cosmicevents, predict thefuture and explain human nature. Better informed, sophisticated people may frown upon and ridicule such claims, but the number of incidents that link numbers tophysical e?ects is simply too large to ignore as mere coincidence. It is in cases like these that the more respectable number theory is substituted for numerology. Although it is recognized as the most fundamental branch of mathem- ics, thevocabulary ofnumbertheoryincludesconcepts suchasprimenumber, perfect number, amicable number, square number, triangular number, py- midal number, and even magic number, none of which sounds too scienti?c and may suggest a di?erent status for the subject. Not surprisingly, number theory remains the pastime of amateurs and professionals alike all the way from the great Gauss down. It may be claimed that abstract number theory is more lofty than mundane science, never to be degraded into a servant of physical theory."
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