Brazil Readings Within Humor

Publicado em 10 Apr. 2017. Última atualização em 24 May. 2018


The activity focuses on the relationship between artistic expression and legal forms. It is intended that students build critical thinking and take off a common sense to reflect about the different readings of the country. The students examine the relationship between the mainstream media and stereotypes of Braziil.


- GENERAL GOAL: to make a connection between theoretical discourse and common sense about Brazil
- SPECIFIC GOALS: to analyze the way we think about Brazil through a comedy show whose characters embody different stereotypes about the country. In the end, it is expected that students understand, from the humor, the dynamic structuring of several readings on the Brazilian cultural formation.
- It is intended that the students feel sensitized to the problems, deconstructing the common sense views about Brazil and the Brazilians. 


- TEACHING METHOD: Socratic dialogue.
- REQUIREMENTS: There was suggested the text reading of Dialética da malandragem written by Antonio Candido, but the prior reading was not essential.
- INTRODUCTION TO THE DYNAMICS: the professor started the class with an approach of common sense on the stereotype of Brazil, leading students to treat the notion that in Brazil laws are not effective, that everyone is using the "Brazilian way" to benefit themselves, etc. The professor indicated that the author Antonio Candido is fundamental to discuss this theme, especially the Dialectic text of trickery, which is as suggested bibliography. He also took a small book’s patch to work inside the classroom. This introduction lasted about 30 minutes.
- DEVELOPMENT OF THE DYNAMICS: After this reading, the professor showed an episode of A Grande Família series entitled Consciousness is Fire, which, in summary, is developed around a character who does everything correctly and is faced with the position of another character, which tells him that "Who never did a crazy thing in life have not lived." The script then continues, focusing on the first character that then want to do crazy things to show that he had lived. The episode is 45 minutes long.
After the reading of the text and presentation of the video, the professor held a debate in the classroom with all students. He inquired about behavior of the character on why you want to show it is not funny act correctly, compared to the lack of indignation at the conduct of the another character, which does not strictly follow the rules. The professor sought to make the students understand that the image of common sense in the humor reinforced and showed the contradiction of why we laugh at someone who follows the rules. The debate lasted 30 minutes
- END OF THE DYNAMICS: in the final 10 minutes of the class, the professor has combined the views and exposed some considerations regarding the construction and deconstruction of common sense about Brazil and of the Brazilians.
1) It is recommended not to show the video to the end and make students respond immediately to questions. It is important to let them have some fun with the presented humor. It is a good start asking if they liked, what they found most funny and then correlate these comments with the dynamic object. The professor should watch the episode and read the text in advance and prepare some questions and links to the relevant topics for the course and point to the problems in class.
2) If the room has so many students, it is suggested that the class is divided into groups by putting all the questions at once, assigning a reasonable period for them to briefly write their opinions and, after that, to report to the classroom, leaving to the professor the monitoring and promoting of the debate.


- FEEDBACK: the professor gave feedback on students' opinions during the debates and at the closure of each discussion.
- GRADE EVALUATION: There was a participation grade in activities, which, however, did not evaluate the speech or other action taken by the students.


Copyright from the cover page image (cropped):

Image: "Encontro de Bonecos Gigantes", 2006, available by Flicker user "Prefeitura de Olinda", picture of "Passarinho/Pref.Olinda", under the Creative Commons BY 2.0 license.

Activity Details


Brazil Readings Within Humor



Concentration area: 

  • Law and Arts
  • Law Philosophy
  • Brazilian State Formation
  • Law History
  • Politics and Brazilian Institutions
  • Legal Sociology

Discipline : 

Arts and Law Workshop II – 1st year


  • Undergraduate

Key words: 

  • Deconstruction
  • Brazilian Stereotype
  • Brazilian Way
  • Common sense

Number of students: 

From to 20 to 40

Time of application: 

From 1 to 2 hours


Diogo Rais Moreira
Fernanda Tie Yamamoto
Luiza Andrade Corrêa
Vitória Oliveira


Licença Creative Commons
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Atribuição-NãoComercial-CompartilhaIgual 4.0 Internacional

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