Modernization as depoliticization and social anomie

Ana Paula Pacheco
  apsspacheco@gmail.com
  

Abstract

(THIS PAPER BELONGS TO PANEL "NOTES ON MODERNIZATION , FROM THE PERIPHERY II")
Since the 19ŧħ century, there has been a tendency in Brazilian literature to represent the country allegorically through the use of space. In the allegorical configuration that reduces the country to a collectively inhabited “domestic” space, ruled by the power of private property, the relationships between the public and private spheres merge, and suggest confinement and appropriation of urban civilization by the owners of capital, in the context of the conservative modernization.
Space as representation of a disintegrated social totality is again a tendency in recent Brazilian cinema. Here, criminal “intruders” are not the exception in a State of permanent exception. Without suggesting social transformation, the conflicts take place in intimate spaces, i.e., the household or the neighborhood, where the effects of the contiguity between the bourgeoisie and the murderers are highlighted in the petty-bourgeois everyday life. Workers are forced to adapt themselves to precarious working relationships, to patterns of consumption, to the cultural industry, and to organized crime. This presentation intends to analyze and interpret the film Os inquilinos [The tenants] (Sérgio Bianchi, 2009), which depicts the reality of the lower classes under President Lula’s second term in office. By making use of estrangement techniques and formal experimentation, this film questions social normality under capitalism, giving us, from the point of view of the periphery, a picture of the contemporary global civil war.
(DR. ANA PAULA PACHECO (DEPARTMENT OF LITERARY THEORY AND COMPARATIVE LITERATURE, USP, BRAZIL)

Brazilian contemporary cinema - point of view - depoliticization - society and confinement - Lula's era