Administer via culture – educational-cultural revolution in ex-Pauliceia Desvairada (1935-1938)

Barbro Sprinkhorn, 1960.
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By LUIZ ROBERTO ALVES*

Author introduction to newly released book

The revolution in administrative routines in educational and cultural action that took place in São Paulo with almost 1 million inhabitants, directed by the modernist leader Mário de Andrade, took place in the dark times of the Republic, but it became a projected bridge for democratic times, in which citizenship matters and decides. The institution of changes in the public service of the ex-pauliceia desvairada took effect in the city of São Paulo, 1935-1938, under Estado Novo, responsible for its dismantling in the first months of 1938.

The first act of dismantling under the new mayor, Prestes Maia, was the dismissal of director Mário de Andrade. A cultural administration that inspired Paris and revealed new subjects of cultural planning in the metropolis certainly exceeded the expectations of the exceptional regime and its network of party leaders. But what a revolution it was.

The idea for the book was born from three readings: the documents kept by Mário, today the Mário de Andrade Fund of the Institute of Brazilian Studies at USP, the Manifesto of the Pioneers of New Education (1932) and the other, of equal importance, by Antonio Candido present in the preface of Mário de Andrade by himself (1971) and in Literature and society (1976)[I]

While the Modernist leader's texts pointed to new thoughts and administrative actions based on culture and very close to the mestizo-migrant-immigrant people of São Paulo, the document by educators and intellectuals, three years earlier, had indissolubly joined education and culture in one unique political project for Brazil; education would be cultural and culture educational, which would rid the school of rigidity and social alienation. Likewise, Candido revealed his mature appreciation of the decade that would end under the dictatorship of Getúlio Vargas. Some quotes from Mestre Candido are essential.

“The mulatto and the black are definitely incorporated as subjects of study, inspiration and example. Primitivism is now a source of beauty and no longer an obstacle to the elaboration of culture. That, in literature, in painting, in music, in human sciences. (p.120) […] In it (Modernism), and above all in the culmination in which all its fruits matured (1930-40), the liberation from academicism, from historical repressions, from literary officialdom merged; trends in political education and social reform; the ardor of getting to know the country” (p. 124, 1976).

It so happens that Candido's appreciation goes beyond the sociocultural vision and also allows understanding of administrative thinking. He writes the preface to Duarte's book (1971, p. XIII to XVII). In the work in which Mário is the only character, subject of Duarte's memory and affection, it is clear that the modernist objectives are projected towards public administration. At a point in the preface he states: “Not just the routinization of culture, but the conscious attempt to wrest it from privileged groups in order to transform it into a humanizing factor for the majority, through planned institutions”.

It also refers to the exchange of correspondence between Mário de Andrade and Paulo Duarte, in which the DCR guidelines became clear: “… making art and knowledge a common good to incorporate the achievements of the Modern to the tradition that it came to update and fertilize : to extract from the great ideals of the 1920s the consequences in the field of education and research”. Candido does not leave it for less and concludes: “And until today in the city of São Paulo, the culture thus conceived has not found similar manifestations; what exists is the ruin or development of what was then done”. Candido works on a pedagogy of public administration, that is, he analyzes that political action of government. But his always brilliant critique is only addressed to the Department's potential opponents, contemporaries and posterity.

The conjunction of the three readings moved the construction of the book presented here. Likewise, he indicated the necessary approach: to think of the institutional culture of the Department of Culture and Recreation of Mayor Fábio da Silva Prado as a government value instituted by the “learning” of the modernist intellectual group at the service of the common good in the local State. At the base of this group are Mário, Rubens Borba de Moraes, Sérgio Milliet, Paulo Duarte, Luiz Saia, Oneyda Alvarenga.

The political reading of this leading group of the Department of Culture and Recreation – DCR – regarding public service in São Paulo in the 1930s solidifies, in terms of the research findings, what Candido clarified so well: extracting knowledge and enjoyment from exclusive possession of the elites to “transform it into a factor of humanization of the majority, through planned institutions” The sense of humanization in Candido coincides with the fundamental idea of ​​Paulo Freire in Pedagogy of the Oppressed, notably for those who read the 1968 handwritten book. Humanization could not exist outside a real framework of dehumanization. In Freire, humanization is also addressed to the majorities.

It should be noted that the bibliography of the administrative area and other applied knowledge were necessary, notably texts by Linda Smircich (2006)[ii], Edgar Schein (2006)[iii] and Max Weber (1963)[iv], alongside works that operate documental criticism or aggregate methodologies, such as Chartier (1990)[v], Creswell (2010)[vi] Orlando (2008)[vii] and Fairclough (2008)[viii]. The strong critical reading of the ways of managing in Brazil, operated by Guerreiro Ramos (1950)[ix], had a presence in organizational thinking that broadened the revelation of the studied experience.

Thus, the nature of the constructed work requires that the meanings of that service to the public, or to the urban common good, be arranged at this point in the text, as they dialogue with the data and facts that follow, thus creating a larger network of meanings that both refer to the full text of the analysis and to a theory of organizational culture in the cultural-educational work directed by Mário de Andrade.

In this way, what does that cultural, educational and recreational public service, or that institutional culture, mean in this work?

(1) It reveals a work and administrative attitude that is already established in the language that organizes and dynamizes it, act 861 of Mayor Fábio da Silva Prado. The performative documents of the cultural-educational administration respond to a project long thought by the group, and which was organized in 1935 as a linguistic bundle, representing a totality always sought in the texts that Mário wrote during the administration. To the Five Chronicles by Mário de Andrade (1920-1921), organized and introduced by Telê Ancona Lopez (2004) and dedicated to São Paulo, seek a “whole” in the urbanity of pauliceia, still timid and already fragmented. Perhaps the whole is only possible through committed love, a visible interstice in Mário's texts. Now, this love is the same in the Director of the Department of that interregnum of coups and revolts of the 1930s.

(2) Likewise, a service to the common good of the young metropolis is evident, whose administrative culture does not configure a cultural policy, a much younger concept, but a practice that revolutionizes routines and creates a social quality capable of breaking the siege of the later decades and dialogue with new administrations of culture and education in the 1990s and beyond. Such scope consolidates the value of a non-model administration or driven by special marketing, but a libel against anemic, anomic, partisan and fragmented administrations of culture/education by the division of mediocrities that drive them in most Brazilian cities.

(3) One sees there a matrix and integrative government plan via cultural education or educational culture, capable of guaranteeing consistency to the symbol of totality in movement, or dynamic totality. Given the intellectual and technical level of that elaboration, the work of the DCR attracted the attention of several European cities, at the same time that it displeased many leaders of political parties somehow linked to government sectors. The highlights of the brilliant conference The Modernist Movement, from 1942, allow a memory that matches the meanings realized in the work of public administration: the permanent right to aesthetic research; updating Brazilian artistic intelligence; and the stabilization of a national creative consciousness.

(4) As a result, the work matrix adds scientific, technical and pedagogical actions to the aesthetic and ethical values ​​of the larger plan of government and, in this way, creates solidity in communication, both with many Brazilian cities and abroad. Likewise, with the democratic future of Brazil.

(5) Finally, to begin with, there is a policy for the inclusion of children. young people, educators, students, artists, people connected to techniques, workers from the city and the countryside and professors from the nascent university, which suggests the political maturation of Modernism and its inscription in a becoming in which creators and promoters of culture to be effective citizens.

Act 861, from the first months of 1935, appoints Mário as director of Culture and Recreation and assumes a complete project of service in favor of the human universe composed mostly of immigrants and migrants, succeeded by their descendants. Who are they if not a working people in the city of growing industrialism and its partner, real estate speculation? In this already complex city, Mário and his workmates prioritize children, teenagers and young people, inside and outside parks and schools, sons and daughters of workers in the city that spread across the distant floodplains of Tietê and Rio de Janeiro. Tamanduateí, to form the places of life of men and women of trade. Not the city of Bandeirantes, the land of going, but the city of migrants and immigrants, the land of coming and going. This is the charm of director Mário.

What is also impressive about this public-social administration, which combines the work of government and the active presence of organized society, is its scientific basis, its qualitative-quantitative research work, a phenomenon strange to governments of yesterday and today. Surveys, collection organization, interviews, cataloging, organization of heritage, collection and study of diverse popular expressions both in the hinterland of Brazil and in dozens of cities in São Paulo.

The quote that follows, the result of an “inquiry”, helps to understand who Mário’s team worked with and what public service would come to mean: “We obtained information on the income and expenses of 221 families, and not all of them were asked. information on nationality and illiteracy, which was done with only 151 families. However, this group of 151 families is probably characteristic of the total group. Eighty families said that the chief was born in Brazil, and the other 53 came from: Italy (32), Spain (12) and Portugal (9). Three families of Japanese immigrants were also analysed, three from Lithuania and three from Austria (probably from Austrian lands according to pre-war limits), and the rest who provided information came from England, Youguslavia, Poland, Germany, from Syria, Russia, Argentina and Hungary. If the figures we obtained on literacy are characteristic of the entire working class, they indicate that São Paulo has achieved considerable progress, since 1920, in the path of instruction. Among 151 families who informed us about it, only 21% of the people aged 13 or over were illiterate. We observed that in Spanish and Lithuanian families the proportion of illiterates was higher, while in Italian, Portuguese and Brazilian-born families, it ranged from 16,4 to 18%”.

“Surveys” like this one provided the direction for public-social management. They revealed the children scattered throughout the neighborhoods, showed the condition of the families, their origins, their speeches and their cultural and educational involvements (or the inertia and alienation in the “concentration” in São Paulo, in the terms of Prado Junior, 1966); thus, they formed a scientific basis for cultural action, including for the great Kindergarten movement and educational-cultural totalized education. Totality is an obsessive term in Mario. Perhaps that obsession with creators that Candido talked about in the postgraduate classes I attended at FFLCH-USP.

Another markedly scientific activity was the inclusion of Dina Dreyfus (Lévi-Strauss) in the DCR's ethnological and ethnographic project. Dina, present but not fully in the group of professors who worked at the nascent USP, strongly encouraged by Mário, guided a long and fruitful action with students and non-students in the service of collecting and recording narratives, dances and other entertainments, both from the region both in São Paulo and in cities in the interior of São Paulo. The result of the structured and accompanied work is still a treasure of cultural work in the rural and peripheral worlds of cities.

The surprising DCR team had a history, that is, the sensitive and courageous learning of Modernism in the 1920s, then transformed (in their endless group conversations) into principles, theories, pedagogy and strategies for public-social management of culture and its network interactive (today it would be called integrated or matrix government policy): education, health, recreation, gastronomy, applied research, school hygiene, sanitation, library development, discography, sports, international relations, cinema, classical, popular, folkloric and poetic arts. It should be noted that the primacy of culture as a political totality was the axis of the integrated and integrating service. The enunciation of the work objectives for the DCR, inserted in official acts and lived in government practices leave no room for doubt.

Literally quote: “(a) Stimulate and develop all initiatives aimed at favoring the educational, artistic and cultural movement; (b) promote and organize art shows and cooperate in a systematic set of measures, for the development of dramatic art, and, in general, of music, singing, theater and cinema; (c) to make available to everyone, through the services of a radio broadcasting station, popular lectures and courses on literary and scientific organization, university courses and conferences, literary and artistic sessions, in short, everything that can contribute to the improvement and extension of the culture; (d) create and organize public libraries, in order to effectively contribute to the diffusion of culture in all layers of the population; (e) organize, install and manage playgrounds, athletics fields, swimming pools and stadium in the city of São Paulo for national and international sporting events; (f) supervise all recreational institutions and public entertainment of a permanent or transitory nature that are established in the municipality; (g) collect, collect, restore and publish old documents, material and historical and social data, which facilitate research and studies on the history of the city of São Paulo, its institutions and organizations, in all areas of activity”. (Act 861)

The analytical work immediately reveals the pillars of thought of the DCR leaders, that is, the totality and the movement, transversalized by the scientific attitude, which brings the epistemological basis alongside the government plan. The administration, hitherto directed at selected groups, especially in the areas of culture and education, is open to everyone, it is open to the human São Paulo and, considering the proposed practices, it is directed, preferably, to children, teenagers and young people. Mário uses unusual terms for the public service of the time, when he proposes priority to the “educational, artistic and cultural movement” (developing all initiatives, cooperating in a systematic set of measures, inspecting private institutions, publishing documents in all fields of activity ).

One reads of Mário's hard battles against companies working on LOBBY in favor of the occupation of the São Paulo Municipal Theater by the customary operettas to the taste of the exclusive elites. While seeking to frame them, it proposes the opening of all equipment and all aesthetic-cultural, recreational and educational modalities. His vehemence suggests that the Mayor listened to complaints from lobbyists for shows, but also reveals the political reading that such intellectuals have of São Paulo and Brazil. Today we would say that they carried out the inversion of priorities, at least for three years.

As a result, the educational, cultural and recreational public service will have to be available to all sectors of the population, it will have to rely on “surveys” that make it possible to understand who the citizens are, including their family histories and their origin, and it will have to build new audiences and new participants according to their pleasure, their vocation and their interest. Then the modernist idea of ​​freedom, including aesthetics. In his speeches, recordings and photos, it is evident that the administration is lived by the citizens, the vast majority of schoolchildren, who began to educate themselves inside and outside schools, that is, in all of São Paulo's public facilities.

Systematically, documents written by Mário show the educational culture, or cultural education, which does not dispense with art, health, technologies, the desired and necessary knowledge for a life that is also total, integral.

The desires and readings found in the Chroniclesquoted in the verses of Pauliceia Desvairada and in other texts, never as a cause and effect relationship, but rather an intellectual connection in search of an understandable totality, they jump alive and active in management practices in that second modernist period. "São Paulo! Commotion of my life”.

In addition to all the significant values, this totality confronts and illuminates what still manifests itself in Brazilian society: the abandonment of education and culture in many cities, inertia, class prejudices and position in the rigidity and absence of stimuli and experiences cultural interests, the spontaneity of public service (its lack of interest in research and knowledge) and, worse, its submission to partisan voracity and privatism as a panacea.

Mário had demands regarding cultural education. He denied the school centered on the first letters and its rowed desks. Literacy, for him, was a complex act – as experienced in all aspects of that administration – of cultural actions, hygiene, games, books, surveys, hearings, dialogue, research, sports and notebooks. Outside this field of meanings, Mariodeandra's thought would not be understood. As a result, the police of the “museums that teach”, open, noisy, lively, will be the people of the people. The safety of public equipment resides in the totality of its cultural dynamics. Cultural agents are also guardian and care agents. A noisy museum is a school, an educational process.

In one of the many texts he addresses to Mayor Fabio Prado, he argues beyond São Paulo: “Municipalities should be more particularly responsible for systems of general culture, not specifically didactic, but which contribute to facilitating, expanding and deepening totalized education.[X] of its people, Sports, child socialization, mental hygiene, libraries, arts, observation of traditions, etc., are many other works of a cultural nature, although not specifically didactic, with which the municipalities must help in education from the Brazilian. If such an interpretation is personal, from this board, it is nevertheless logical and based on the spirit of all the action of the Federal and State governments” (p. 217).

To complement, his specific reading of museums that teach: “Municipal museums must have another constitution that will be regulated by central governments. They must contain everything. They must be archaeological, folkloric, historical, artistic, and also open-air and industrial museums. If a central building in the municipality holds a trunk of slaves, some woven baskets, some drawings-copies of petrogriphs found in the region, a carved jacaranda chair, a flag from the Paraguayan War, a well-painted painting and a copy of Fídias , there will also be a garden with Amerindian papyrus, rustic rammed earth, penguelas, gates, progressive series of cultivation of vegetables from the region, etc. And also don't forget the industries of the municipality”.

Mário and his team, from 1935 to 1938, built a concept not yet realized in Brazilian education: culture and education are not a binomial, but a unit. Or, if you like, the idea of ​​culture as totalized education, as written by the modernist leader. Educate yourself in the culture. He is not different from Freire, for someone who is educated by confronting and reading the world. The division of this totality, in the context of Brazilian culturalism and patrimonialism, capitalist partners, represented not only the victory of economic-cultural elitism, but also the decay of pedagogy and didactics, which ceased to be cultural.

Finally, on the threshold of 1938, the Estado Novo created the necessary intrigues to subjugate São Paulo, the rebellious state, and liquidate the modernist experience of the young metropolis through puppets, whose only understanding of culture lay in the occasional presentations of imported and sleepy operas. for the wizened elite with binoculars in their cabins. Or in terms of education, having the child at school based on the be-a-bá and imposed curricula. By the way, to this day and perhaps worse than before.

By way of interpretation, it should be said that a revolution in routines had to take place, as the team led by Mário worked night and day, wrote, produced relationships between cities (whether Rio de Janeiro, Paris, Prague, Buenos Aires and Belo Horizonte, whether São Luiz do Paraitinga or Araraquara), followed up on opinion polls, financed trips to the hinterland to collect songs and narratives and sought to hire a chef for a school lunch experience to the liking of children from different backgrounds.

As already stated, a significant part of the folkloric material found in the competent section of the archives of the American Congress was produced in those three years, under the baton of Mário and Oneyda, with the support of Rubens Borba and Paulo Duarte. Likewise, the municipalities of Paris and Prague sent emissaries to learn about the cultural action undertaken in São Paulo. From then on, there were missions and exchanges between Europe and the growing São Paulo. But all in three years!

Residents saw the institution of sports coordinated by peers, groups of teenagers monitoring the floodplains, fields and sheds, but also in the Pacaembu region. He found the families of children and adolescents being asked about their cultural and educational interests, along with the evaluation of the Department's work. It experimented with circulating libraries, in various formats and, as a symbolic agreement and a point of honor for the team, a new audience was introduced at the Municipal Theater, in addition to the wide circulation of books, films and records.

They also saw groups of folkloric research monitors go out into the field, not only from São Paulo but also from dozens of cities in the interior of São Paulo, involved in accompanying, observing, recording and narrating songs, dances and various religious expressions of the so-called “country world”. ”. He accompanied the expansion of libraries in the neighborhoods and the richness of early childhood education, an obsession of the DCR director.

Among so many others, it is impossible not to mention one of Mário’s testimonies, in a letter to Oneyda Alvarenga: “Since a couple of days on June 5th, when I took office, I have done nothing, absolutely nothing more than work, dream, breathe, talk, live Department. […] But come here, Oneida, think about what it is like, with the national bureaucracy, having to install a Department of enormous complexity, in which, to say the least, nothing had been done!”.

The revolution of Mário and his work team created homology between the dream of social change of the previous decade and the revolution in public routine on solid ground, in that São Paulo that seemed like a work camp, of languages, memories and homesickness. Such desires and needs became services. The revolution resided in the irruption of the new consent, invested and assumed in the confrontation of the culture imprisoned by the small groups of economic-financial power. The author does not use the cultural political expression for what he describes, analyzes and narrates, as he still considers it strange in the concrete action of the public power with the population of that time. The idea of ​​service is present in all manifestations of director Mário de Andrade. The public servant is one who serves. This was the leit motif of modernist apprentices and government operators.

Paulo Duarte, a dear friend, confidant and persistent correspondent, did not leave behind Mário's dismissal by Prestes Maia in 1938. For him, it was a matter of forwarding the death of the poet, musician, letter writer, teacher, researcher, cultural activist , storyteller, art critic and everything else that meant a passion for the deep meanings of culture in the life of the world.

While Mário, in several letters, blames administrative mistakes on his back (what mistake is made by someone fired by the authoritarian Estadonovismo after working day and night?) Paulo directs all his anger at the ignorance and bad faith of the political arrangements assumed by the City Hall of avenues, streets and instigating contractors. He goes so far as to quote the horrors and filth of Dante's inferno[xi] to justify the withering away of his friend, who, in fact, roams between São Paulo and Rio, works in historical heritage and at the University of Brazil (later UFRJ), writes and directs research, but his “passion” persists, the scope expands. his nonconformity in the face of the violent cut of a project that would be fulfilled later, also via culture, in the government of the Republic placed in the hands of Armando de Sales Oliveira.

The educational-cultural accumulation was sectioned. Nothing strange in the cultural history of Brazil, between ignorance, political bad faith and the power of local and regional elites. However, when the author of the book was Secretary of Education, Culture and Sports of São Bernardo do Campo (at the same time as Marilena Chauí and Paulo Freire in São Paulo) there was a lot of information about Mariodeandrad's experience, since some theses and dissertations were disseminated at meetings of secretaries of municipal administrations. The experience of 1935-1938 was a bridge to the Brazilian times of democracy, in the case of redemocratization associated with the 1988 Constitution.

Nothing unusual was the rereading of the meanings of the library in the life of the population, in music production, in the interaction with education and sports, sometimes tourism, in the exchange between municipalities for the development of folklore and common fun, as well as in the search to know the interests of sectors of the population who have always been denied the right to education and creation.

Finally, Mário, who blamed himself for not having “normalized” the department in São Paulo life, had in fact created, not a model, but a critical path of cultural activity in the face of the denial of rights to the city. In this way, for several generations to come, the seeds of 1935-1938 will be present in citizen society, in the land of guaranteed rights, in the places where the exclusivist trophy of power of command is plundered and transformed into a value that cultivates and educates the new generations in their formative paths, as autonomous, solidary and participatory people.

In addition to all this, this author demands memory of himself. In one of the postgraduate classes at FFLCH-USP, in the 1970s, master Antonio Candido stated “that he was bothered by the fact that future generations might think that Mário de Andrade was the name of a comet that had passed through São Paulo. Paul many years ago.

The "comet" does not cease to pass.

Ah, if the modernist team led by Mário had more time… Well, but there would be no Estado Novo.

* Luiz Roberto Alves is a senior professor-researcher at the School of Communication and Arts at the University of São Paulo and a participant in the activities of the Alfredo Bosi Chair at the Institute of Advanced Studies at USP.

 

Reference


Luiz Roberto Alves. Administer via culture (educational-cultural revolution in ex-Pauliceia Desvairada, 1935-1938). São Paulo, Alameda, 2022, 220 pages.

Notes


[I] Literature and Society: Studies in Literary History and Theory. 5.ed. São Paulo: National Publisher.

[ii] L'étude des organizations envisagees sous l'angle d'une culture. Auteurs et textes classiques de la théorie des organizations. Québec: Les Presses de l'Université Laval, 2006.

[iii] Playdoyer pour une conscience renouvelée de ce qu'e st la culturer organisationnelle. Auteurs et textes classiques de la théorie des organizations. Québec: Les Presses de l'Université Laval, 2006.

[iv] Politics as a Vocation. Sociology Essays. Rio de Janeiro: Zahar Editora, 1963.

[v] CHARTIER, Roger. Cultural History between practices and representations. Lisbon: Difel, 1990.

[vi] CRESWELL, John W. Research project. Qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods. Porto Alegre: Artmed, 2010.

[vii] ORLANDI, Eni Pulcinelli. Speech and Text. Formulation and Circulation of the Senses. 3.ed. Campinas: Pontes Editores edition, 2008.

[viii] FAIRCLOUGH, Norman. Discourse and social change. Brasilia, Publisher of UNB, 2008.

[ix] GUERREIRO RAMOS, A. An introduction to the history of rational work organization. Rio de Janeiro: National Press Department, 1950.

5. DCR director emphasis. Following this work, two major categories of thought stand out, the idea of ​​totality and its communication process. Mário wants to build a totality and the motive of his insistence and his innovative arguments is realized in recurrent and persistent acts of communication. Communication in Mário is life drive, in which poetics and exchange of correspondence weave the links.

[xi] “people attuffata in uno sterco/che da li uman privadi parea mosso”. The complete excerpt in Canto XVIII, Inferno, Dante Alighieri, lines 112-114, reads: “Kiwi venimmo; e quindi giù nel fosso/ vidi gente attuffata in uno sterco/che da li uman privadi parea mosso…”. One of many translations: “We arrived there; and there in the ditch / I saw people wallowing in such dung / that it seemed to come from human toilets.

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