Each country has its own culture and traditions that have been created and practiced through many years and passed down with each new generation. Growing up in Brazil and moving to the United States made me realized how each and every country is unique and how their heritage values are constructed by the people and they are the deciders of what is remembered or forgotten in their historic past and heritage is the outcome of that process, that is why heritage from one country can significantly differ from another countries heritage.
Heritage defines who you are because it can impact your decisions and choices in life, the Brazilian culture which I grew up in, even though it is very religious based; your religion plays a major role in your life and how you act and treat others. Going regularly to church every Sunday with your family is a must in my culture. It is also however, very mellow and relaxed. Enjoying yourself and taking great pleasure in your daily life is very significant to the common citizen in Brazil. We also take great pride in our music and our sports that have been growing significantly worldwide including our most famous and most played sport, soccer.
Brazilians shaped their heritage to be one that is very festive and social, every year there are various festivities and events that take place, the main one being the Carnival which takes place a week before Ash Wednesday, a celebration held by Catholics that initiates a period of fasting and abstinence that takes place for 6 weeks and ends at Easter. It is most definitely, however, not only celebrated by Catholics, the whole country it seems stops for an entire week and parades, dances, music, and celebrations take over. Carnival is one of the most famous holidays in Brazil but without doubt not the only one. Religion, Music, dancing and celebrating plays a major role in the Brazilian culture and heritage and many of our festivals ties in with some religious practice.
Food is also a great part of the Brazilian heritage; we take great pride in our cuisine, the Brazilian food is one of the greatest examples of the diverse natural and cultural mix of the country. There are very significant dishes in Brazil that are known worldwide such as the feijoada, and candies such as brigadeiro which are a must at birthday parties or at a get together. Even living in America me and my family still cook some of these dishes just to savor a little piece of our country and feel at home.
Looking at me and my siblings baby pictures you will find us wearing sports uniforms, this is a great example of how sports are a part of the Brazilian heritage, its passed down by your parents, usually you are a fan of the same team your dad is, and how we are in contact with this part of our culture since the day we are born. Brazilians are not just fans when it comes to their soccer team they are true fanatics, you may find grown men crying over their team’s loss or throwing parties to celebrate a victory. The Brazilian national soccer team is currently one of the best in the world and when it comes time for the world cup everyone is tuned in and rooting for Brazil to conquer another win. Soccer is not the only known sport in Brazil but it is the main on. Volleyball, auto racing, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, capoeira, swimming, and tennis are just a few of the many sports commonly played in Brazil.
My national heritage I believe still plays a major role in my life since I still speak my first language at home constantly, take part in some of the celebrations we would have in Brazil even if I’m not there, and value my history, my country’s history. I consider this culture and my ethnicity to be my main heritage even if I moved away from my country because it consists of values, traditions, and personal beliefs that I agree with, practice and plan to pass on to my kids.