Vamos Vadiar! Communication strategies and political communication in Brazilian capoeira groups in the UK

Dr Rosana Martins (New University Lisbon/University of São Paulo) is a visiting post-doctoral fellow at the Research Institute of Latin American Studies (RILAS) during the first semester of 2011-12.  She will work on political communication strategies of Brazilian capoeira groups under the guidance of Dr Marieke Riethof.

Capoeira is a martial art that emerged from survival strategies.  It was created by slaves brought to Brazil from Africa during the colonial period. People were brought from Angola, Congo and Mozambique and they brought their cultural traditions with them.  Today, Capoeira is characterised by its various styles and groups.  Capoeira is practiced by a diverse range of people: men and women, elderly and children, whites and blacks, Brazilians and non-Brazilians.

The central aim of the project is to investigate the role of the British Council of Capoeira. The British Council seeks to organise orientation for new groups and support for groups that are already working in the UK, such as training courses, a calendar of events and negotiating contracts for advertizing. It seeks to be legally recognized by the British government as an association and provides important support in the Immigration Service to recognize capoeira teachers coming from Brazil to conduct workshops in the UK.

This association also provides contacts with the Brazilian government and Brazilian public policies to promote capoeira practice. The project will map the activities of British Council of Capoeira and investigate the results obtained by British Council in approaching the British government and the Capoeira community in the UK. The goal is to analyse the strategies of the British Council of Capoeira, focusing on the  construction of identities as well as social recognition.

Dr Rosana Martins is a postdoctoral researcher at the Centre for Media and Journalism (CIMJ), Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, New University of Lisbon, and researcher at the Center for Educational Cybernetics – Digital Language Laboratory, University of São Paulo / School of Communications and Arts – São Paulo / Brazil. Visiting Research Fellow at the Research Institute of Latin American Studies (RILAS) and Member of The Transnational Lives, Gender and Mobility network (TLM & G) – Institute of Social Sciences – University of Lisbon / European Science Foundation