Spectacle and Rebellion in Fin-de-Siècle Brazil: the Commodified Rebel in Machado de Assis's Chronicles.

Carolina Sá Carvalho


In the present article, I examine Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis’s five chronicles, published between 1894-1897 in the Rio de Janeiro newspaper A Gazeta de Notícias, on the Brazilian Republic’s assault against the Canudos community in Northeasten Brazil. Focusing on Machado’s critique of the role of communication technologies, and particularly print news, in fin de siècle Brazil, I argue that he makes use of the transformation of the messianic community into a national mediatic event to thematize the birth of a consumer society, the violent expansion of global capitalist networks and state power, authoritarianism, and the contradictory values of what he refers to as "bourgeois industrial society."


Media studies; commodification; Canudos; imagined communities; sertão

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21471/jls.v3i2.174

Copyright (c) 2018 Carolina Sá Carvalho