Brazil Guide

Brazilian Culture & Society

Brazil is predominantly a Roman Catholic country. Symbolic of Brazil’s religious affiliation is the colossal statue of Christ the Redeemer that stands on the summit of Mount Corcovado in Rio de Janeiro.

Grown up children often live with their parents until they marry. Elderly parents often live with their children. Families are usually large.

There is a class system in Brazil. Social and economic discrimination on the basis of skin color is common. There is a great difference in wages among the different classes.

The 1988 constitution prohibits discrimination against women, but inequality still exists. The concept of ‘machismo’ means that men were encouraged to exercise their strength and virility and women to be submissive to them.

Children between the ages of 6 and 14 years must attend school.

Rice and beans are diet staples, together with spices, meat, fresh fruit, vegetables, and fish.

Street markets (Feira) are popular. A black bean stew is a great favorite, containing pork and eaten with rice. Coxinha contains minced chicken, wrapped in dough and deep fried.

Brazil has historically rich folk traditions, with music, dance, art, and literature coming from the varied mix of cultures. Brazilians are known for their love of dance and music. The Rio de Janeiro carnival is very famous.

Brazil is known for its beloved bossa nova and samba dances. Brazil has produced many successful classical and jazz musicians.

Social Customs & Protocol

Brazilian people are open and friendly. They use hand gestures in communication. Women and children often link arms when walking and men may use both hands to shake hands to add warmth to their greeting.

It is not unusual to be late for a dinner date or a party. Brazilians often have very long meals.

Brazilians dress stylishly and judge others on their appearance. Casual dress is more formal than in many other countries.

Source: Brazil Guide
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