Laughter Out Of Place

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Laughter Out Of Place by Mind Map: Laughter Out Of Place


1.1. Goldstein explains that through the domestic work done by Gloria and others similar to her, it is one of the only times where the elite and the lowest in the pay scale share such intimate relationships. At the same time the employers know next to nothing of the lives of the domestic workers.

1.1.1. Gloria and many others have grown up in the class of servitude. The mothers were most likely domestic workers and thus the daughters follow in their footsteps. Glorias grandparents in fact lived during the final years of slavery in Brazil. From slavery, the next step is servitude unless a drastic change is made. The class system is also evident in the educational system. Many of the public and all of the private schools cater to the upper and middle classes, leaving the lower classes to struggle. This will never allow for the poverty level to shrink. In fact the economy has been shrinking in Rio for several years. Education is directly related to the economy. In Felicidade Eterna, watching television is a community event. The problems encountered by the elites of the soap operas are often laughed at by those of Glorias community who has endured much worse.


2.1. Donna M. Goldstein challenges much of what we think we know about the "culture of poverty." Drawing on more than a decade of experience in Brazil, Goldstein provides an intimate portrait of everyday life among the women of the favelas, or urban shantytowns. These women have created absurdist and black-humor storytelling practices in the face of trauma and tragedy. Goldstein helps us to understand that such joking and laughter is part of an emotional aesthetic that defines the sense of frustration and anomie endemic to the political and economic desperation of the shantytown.


3.1. Goldstein begins the chapter speaking about her return to Brazil. She is surpised by the seemingly disrespectful (black laughter) laughter on the death of her friends brother. Thus, the title of the book.

3.1.1. Goldstein intended to work in a less studied area than Rio. She in the end expressed "I was not strong enough to over come the allure of Rio. Although Carnaval is not unique to Brazil, it is the most popular. Goldstein argues that Brazil has taken Carnaval to a higher level than just a celebration. It has become almost religious and has formed a sense of "Brazilianness" Carnaval has different meanings. A time for laughter and forgetting. Conservative ritual that reinforces class positions and gender and sexual hierarchies. Scheper-Hughes argues "There would be no need for carnaval in the first place if there were not monstrous things that needed to be banished and forgotten."


4.1. In Brazil, people are uncomfortable talking about race and racism. Brazil never had a civil rights movement similar to that of the United States. It does not have the legal codes and systems dealing with race as does the U.S.

4.1.1. The fantasy of seducing the coroa. The coroa is an older, wealthy, white male. In the fantasy, the woman is able to seduce, move in with the coroa and even become wealthy herself. In both postcolonial and feminist writings about slavery in the north American context, the black body was used. In fact the perception of the black body was merged with that of a prostitute in late 19th century art and literature. American stereotypes of black women take on 4 main forms. The Mammy, the Matriarch, the welfare mother, and the jezebel. Brazilian sexuality and the "erotic paradise" has been a staple of Brazil since the 1980s. It has been celebrated in the historiography and also in the celebrations of carnival in which the brochures sent to tourists present the mulata as the beacon of Brazilian sexuality.


5.1. Gloria had been informed of the death of a man with whom she had lived as a teenager. In response, she joked and laughed about it. She had also learned of the death of her oldest son who had gone astray. She had disowned him years before due to his criminal activities. Upon learning of his death she could not shed any tears and showed no emotions.

5.1.1. The streets of Brazil are full of children who do not live at home. Their living conditions and vulnerability to violence, make the upper and middle classes feel uncomfortable about how their country is represented in the press. There has been proof of "systematic assassinations" of the street children in Brazil by death squads. Upper and middle class have been forced to question fundamental aspects of their country. Violence and harsh conditions are very real and evident in Felicidade Eterna. Gloria has strong harsh parenting philosophies. Once her older son was going through a late childhood bed wetting stage. She forced him to walk around the neighborhood with his urine stained sheets sucking on them. She believed that this behavior from an older child was unacceptable. Gloria encouraged her children to do honest grueling minimum wage work so they wouldn't become involved in gangs. Her world is divided into bandits and honest workers. Her ultimate goal is to discipline her children into becoming honest workers, even through harsh words and punishment.


6.1. Rio de Janeiro is becoming one of the most unequal cities in the world, and crime and violence in their many forms are experienced and commented upon across vast divisions of class. Rios Zona sul is characterized by elegant apartments buildings with guards and a middle class and elite population that is becoming more obsessed with crime, violence and fear.

6.1.1. Felicadade Eterna ecperienced distinct cycles of csalm and violence tht were not immediately perceivable in one time period. A local gang was led by a reasonable person was key to the stability and safety that residents experienced at the time. If he was killed someone else took over and became more violent. Drugs have a more dangerous feel to hose among this particular population than the recreational and hohemian meaings thy hold among the middle and upper classes. Gangs seduce young males into their organizations by offering decent "wages"


7.1. There are anthropological interpretations that suggest Brazilian sexuality is central issue at the social and cultural level as opposed to the American and European sexuality which is more individually centered.

7.1.1. Sexual joking and teasingseem to be a friendly aspect of even the most benign social relations, acting as a kind of verbal confirmation of the centrality of sexuality to social life. O Amor Natural Public flirtation is an elaborate and beloved game, not seen as an objectification of women's bodies but rather appreciated as pleasurable and complimentary of women's bodies. Brazilian women of all classes enjoy being looked at, complimented, and and that publically being recognized as being desirable is important.


8.1. Humor is used as a way to deal with rape.

8.1.1. Due to a lack of trust of the Police it is unlikely that people would report crimes even rape, to the authorities. Even the legal system would not fairly hear a case from impoverished women due to a combination of anachronistic legal codes regarding class, gender and sexuality. Humor can only be understood in tis place, and place is always circumscribed by relations of class, gender, race and sexuality.