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Cannibal Angels

Transatlantic Modernism and the Brazilian Avant-Garde

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Kenneth David Jackson

In the first three decades of the twentieth century, artists, writers, musicians, and architects from both sides of the Atlantic interacted to create a modern style for Brazil. Their works shaped Brazilian national expression and self-definition for the twentieth century and into the present, with renewed relevance as Brazil plays an increasingly important role in global affairs. Artists such as Tarsila do Amaral and Roberto Burle-Marx are appearing for the first time in museums in the United States and Europe, along with the concept of antropofagia from the «Cannibal Manifesto», a theory of cultural autonomy and a model for fusion, hybridity, and assimilation. This book offers a cultural history and interpretation of Brazilian modernism in the arts and letters, exploring how modernism depends on transatlantic negotiation and develops through interchanges between Brazilians and Europeans.
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CHAPTER 2: The Modern Art Week of 1922

Extract

The year 1922 has been cast as a pivotal year in literature, a veritable dividing line in history, because of the publication in February of James Joyce’s novel Ulysses by Sylvia Beach in Dijon, France, and in the October issue of The Criterion of T. S. Eliot’s poem The Waste Land, on which he had received editorial comments from Ezra Pound in Paris the year before.1 A global perspective might include Herman Hesse’s (Nobel Prize 1946) Siddhartha and Stefan Zweig’s Brief einer Unbekannten (Letter from an Unknown Woman). In poetry, Maples Arce’s Andamios interiores (Interior Scaffolding), César Vallejo’s Trilce, and Robert Frost’s ‘Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening’. Also in 1922 Virginia Woolf publishes Jacob’s Room and the short story ‘Mrs. Dalloway in Bond Street’, Rilke writes the last six Élegies de Duino (Duino Elegies) and the Sonnets à Orphée (Sonnets to Orpheus), Jean Cocteau’s ‘Antigone’ opens at the Théâtre de l’Atelier in Montmartre with settings by Picasso, music by Arthur Honegger, and costumes by Coco Chanel. At the invitation of patron Sydney Schiff, Proust, Joyce, Diaghilev, Stravinsky, Picasso, Satie, and Clive Bell dine together in Paris on May 18. For other writers, the year 1922 was a time to return to creative ideas. Goldstein notes that in 1922 Woolf renewed a character in The Voyage Out (1915), Forster returned to the abandoned manuscript that would be A Passage to India, and Lawrence started Kangaroo.

Well before 1922 Brazilian artists and writers were living in...

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