Literatura Nordeste

Jorge Amado

The writing of the Northeast has always exhibited great energy. Its most unique phenomenon is what’s called cordel literature, which consists of booklets printed from blocks of carved wood.

In the area of traditional literature, the novels of Jorge Amado have garnered acclaim in Brazil and abroad.In the 17th century, Bahian poet Gregório de Mattos, a well-educated man of refined culture, developed a reputation for implacably satirical poetry, which he wielded against the powerful.

His literary contribution , which includes lyrical and religious poetry, would be just the first in a series of locally inspired writings that the Northeast would endow to Brazil.

Gonҫalves Dias of Maranhão and Castro Alves of Bahia defined Brazilian poetry during the mid-19th century. Among the romantics of the 19th century, Jose de Alencar stands out. He had a systematic “literary project” that included the cultivation of the “Brazilian language”.

That mission led him to incorporate into his novels a variety of Brazilian themes, including native peoples, local history, and urban life in the Northeast.

Around that time, a popular regional form of poetry separately began to take shape. With the help of private printing shops, which began to sprout up in the 1930s, this form eventually grew into the formidable cultural phenomenon known as cordel literature.

Cordel would establish the reputations of many poets, including Aderaldo Ferreira de Araujo, also known as Cego (Blind) Aderaldo, and Antonio Gonҫalves Silva, otherwise known as Patativa do Assaré.

The Northeast inspired the naturalist movement that developed in Brazil on the eve of the 20th century. Aluisio de Azevedo distinguished himself as the movement’s greatest novelist with O Mulato (1881, The Mulatto) and especially with O Cortiҫo (1890, A Brazilian Tenement).

The novelists’ accomplishments set the stage for the true blossoming of Brazilian literature, in which fiction took a regional focus, especially in the Northeast, and reached the pinnacle of its excellence.

The best-known 2th- century representatives of the northeastern genre are José America de Almeida, Rachel de Queiroz, and José Lins do Rego. The last wrote Menino de Engenho (1932, Plantation Boy). Graciliano Ramos, whose masterpieces include São Bernardo (1934, published in English with the same title) and Vidas Secas (1938, Barren Lives), reached beyond the confines of regionalism touching.

Then there’s Jorge Amado, who during his career published more than thirty books, some of which were translated into dozens of languages. Amado’s 1933 Cacau was the first Bahian theme novel.

In the 1970s and 1980s, João Ubaldo Ribeiro of Bahia published Sargento Getúlio (Sergeant Getulio) and Viva o Povo Brasileiro (An Invincible Memory) . In his novel Avalovara (1973, also published in English), Osman Lins of Pernambuco experimented with a complex, original structure. Ariano Suassuna of Paraiba, considered one of Brazil’s greatest living playwrights, made his debut in narrative prose in 1971.on universal literary realms.

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Like the region ‘s literature, northeastern poetry has made strides toward maturity. This can be seen in the work of Manuel Bandeira of Pernambuco, who brought together aesthetic freedom and metaphysical reflection.

At the same time, Jorge de Lima of Alagoas worked in epic dimensions. By cultivating what he called “objective” poetry, João Cabral de Melo Neto elevated social criticism and denunciation of inequity to an art, and, surprisingly, did so while adhering to rigorous, traditional lyrical structure.

The same care is visible in the work of Ferreira Gullar, who, while in political exile during the military dictatorship, penned Poema Sujo in 1976. With a rare mastery of verse, he evokes his native São Luis, in Maranhão.

The passion of Gullar’s longing for his home continue the tradition of his intellectual predecessors and their powerful emotions for Brazil’s great Northeast.

Literature of the Northeast of Brazil – Brazil Travel Guide

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