Brazil

Welcome to the Brazilian culture page!

This page, like all of our cultural guide pages, will forever be a work in progress. Please check back at a future date for additional information. If you have cultural or culinary expertise when it comes to Brazil, please share! Email us at with your thoughts.

Introduction

Perhaps more than any other country on Earth, Brazil deserves the descriptor a land of contrasts. It is one of the largest countries in the world, both in terms of geography and population. It is home to one of the most ethnically diverse populations on Earth, and home to a staggering range of standards of living.

Despite, or perhaps because of, the vast array of different kinds of people who call Brazil home, the nation has established a strong brand of nationalism, embracing stereotypes and generalizations as national symbols.

Cultural Notes

  • Fashion is a big part of Brazilian life. Your student may seem overly pre-occupied with clothing and appearance.
  • Family is vitally important to Brazilians. Host families who frequently spend time with extended family and close friends will find common ground with Brazilian visitors.
  • Brazilians tend to be very physical, in their speech and with respect to personal space. Do not be surprised if your student greets you with a kiss on the cheek.
  • Soccer is life!
  • Brazils class system is somewhat different than that of other Latin American countries, with a relatively strong middle class. Even among middle class however, maids and servants are commonplace. Students may require some friendly instruction and encouragement to take on tasks such as laundry or cleaning chores.
  • Correct or proper speech is an important indicator of class in Brazil. This has extended to English skills. Be encouraging of progress and gentle with corrections when it comes to language.

Food

  • Brazilians tend to eat their largest meal of the day shortly after noon.
  • Staples of the Brazilian diet are rice, beans, and manioc.
  • Fresh fruit is widely available in Brazil; your students may be surprised if your family does not have fruit on hand.
  • Strong little coffees called cafezinhos (caf-zeenyos) are often served after meals
  • Look online to see if your town has a churrascuria or rodizio all you can eat barbecue restaurants. The churrascuria is a fun cultural experience that should not be missed. Bring your student and let them be your guide!

Further Reading

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