A short guide to the Brazilian culture

Brazil

©Uhlenhorst/flickr

The best way to know about the Brazilian culture if you experience it, however a Brazilian visit is not an every day activity, so first of all a take a look at our short guide to the Brazilian culture, to be aware about the basic aspects that contributes to the  complexity of this  culture. Weather you are planning to visit the country, or just wish to read a little bit more about it, this short quid will satisfy your interest and gives you some useful information that helps you learn a little bit more about Brazilia.

Culture

Being a very vibrant and complex culture, the Brazilian culture was shaped and developed due to a number of sources during the centuries. The Portuguese were the first Europeans who settled in Brasilia and began the colonial period. So due to the colonization by the Portuguese empire, The Brazilian’s language, religion, and legal system was highly influenced by the Portuguese culture. Many Portugal settlers married native women, contributing to the new race: mestizos. However the mixture of the other European and African and Asian culture’s influence shaped the Brazilian language, cuisine, religion, dance and music.

Religion

Morro do Corcovad, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

©live2bnomad/flickr

Although Brazilia is said to be the one of the largest Roman Catholic country, at around 80% of the population, there are other religions as well. Catholicism was spread by the Portuguese Jesuits during the colonization period, by the mission of converting the native people. Duo to the immigration from the Northern European countries, Brasilia also witnessed the Protestantism; nowadays 15 % of the population declared themselves Protestant. The African slaves brought their own religion Candomblé, however according to the Catholic officials they were prohibited to follow their rituals and they had be converted to Christianity. Nowadays a high number of the African population practice The Catholicism and their own religious beliefs. Due to the religions freedom there are other religions practiced freely by: Jews Buddhist, Spiritists, and Muslims etc.

Language

Portuguese is the official language of Brasilia. Brazilian Portuguese is influenced by the Native American and African words. There are also minority languages that one can hear in the country due to the Amerindian groups and immigrants who speak their own languages.

Etiquette and Customs in Brazil

Hugging and backslapping are the most common greetings among friends. Men shake hands and women kiss each other on their cheeks, however if a woman would like to shake hands with a man, she should extend her hand first. If you are invited to a Brazilian family you should bring flowers or a small gift, orchideas are appreciated. If you decide to bring a small gift avoid the purple and black colors because those are known as mourning colors. If you have an invitation for a dinner arrive at least 30 minutes late, however you can arrive up to an hour late for a party. Brazilia is a country where casual dress is very formal.

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