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Brazilian literature term paper

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"Machado de Assis found in the poet the explanation of the dramatist. Gonzaga, to be sure, is no masterpiece of the theatre, and Castro Alves quickly returned from that interlude in his labors to the more potent appeal of resounding verse. If he was fortunate, at the outset, to find so influential a pair to introduce him into the literary world, it was his merit alone that won him early prominence. Only a year ago, signalizing the commemoration of the fifteenth anniversary of his death, Afranio Peixoto prefaced the two splendid volumes of his complete works--including much hitherto unpublished material-with a short essay in which he calls Castro Alves O Maior Poeta Brasileiro (The Greatest of Brazilian Poets). Let the superlative pass. If it is not important to criticism--and how many superlatives are?--it shows the lasting esteem in which his countrymen hold him. He is not only the poet of the slaves; to many, he is the poet of the nation and a poet of humanity as well."
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"Viol"o de rua has been the object of telling critiques, both at the time of its release and in subsequent occasions. Its processes reflect scenes of the drama of Brazilian society of 1961 to 1964 and reveal passions of that historical period, especially the intense belief in the role of art in what some thought to be a (pre-) revolutionary stage. Viol"o de rua was, moreover, a direct challenge to established literary values based on aesthetic criteria and the assumption of the superiority of universality in literature. Brazilians were trying to institute locally a validation of a concept of literature stressing content and political rhetoric In doing so, poets were answering to a declared necessity for the involvement of middle-class intellectuals and students with the working class and peasants. In the early sixties, concerned Brazilian artists faced a fundamental problem with respect to commitment: compulsions to involve others and to denounce had to be weighed against freedom of expression; in effect, individual perceptions had to be balanced with "correct" positions. Many acted according to perceptions of an ideal collective position."
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"The other poets of the Mineira group were primarily lyrists, and in keeping with their idealism were identified with the Inconfid"ncia Mineira, that premature attempt at rebellion against Portuguese oppression that brought death, imprisonment, or exile to its leaders. Of the lyrists, the two most famous were Cl"udio Manoel de Costa ( 1729-89), because of the technical perfection of his poetry and his influence upon contemporaries, and Tomaz Ant"nio Gonzaga ( 1744-1807), because of his authorship of Mar"lia de Dirceu. This "most esteemed book of love in the Portuguese language" described the poet's love for "Marilia" both when hopes smiled benignly upon them and later when sadness and despair overwhelmed him, alone in a faraway African prison. Mar"lia de Dirceu, published in 1810, was the first belletristic work to be printed in Brazil."
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