love lesson

Image: Carlos Fajardo (Jornal de Resenhas)
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By AIRTON PASCHOA*

Commentary on the film by Eduardo Escorel based on the book by Mário de Andrade

The film, based on To love, intransitive verb: idyll,[1] by Mário de Andrade, retells, according to the book, the “love lesson” that a first-born from a distinguished family of the São Paulo bourgeoisie in the 20s receives. Aged 15 or 16, he hires a German housekeeper, Helga, or Fräulein, Elza in the book, on the recommendation of other good families, on the pretext of teaching German and piano to his son and daughters. Once at home, the film follows, with its slow and almost fixed shots, the young man's love initiation, until the final violent breakup, with the father's act, followed by the "good scare in him", about the dangers that surround love reckless, and the inevitable departure of Fräulein, — all duly and pedagogically negotiated.

To capture these delicate moments of initiation, Eduardo Escorel, the director, and his co-writer Eduardo Coutinho eliminate the moving parts of the book, — from page 107 to page 129, — from the walk to the new farm in Jundiaí, including Carlos crying under the arbor, desperate with desire (p. 110), Maria Luísa's illness, cared for by Fräulein with a mother's zeal, her convalescence in Rio, the trip to Tijuca (converted into a trip in the city itself) and the return trip to São Paulo. Paulo through Central do Brasil, passages in which Mário de Andrade had worked so hard to accentuate the national character; in addition to the deletion of the cinematograph scene, the “matinê at the Royal” (p. 69), which culminates in Carlos masturbation, and the overfinal, the passage in which, after the idyll, and the book (p. 138), Fräulein, already at the side of another apprentice of love, meets the former pupil in passing, on the “corso of Avenida Paulista” (p. 145), with a girl of his social class, rich and beautiful.

We can ask ourselves if these cuts are due to difficulties in filming, both material and financial, a fateful hypothesis that was never absent from the horizon of Brazilian cinema. The coherence of the staging, however, as if conceived for a single purpose, hints at another possibility. love lesson, like any adaptation, along with cuts and additions, operates condensations, displacements and alterations of scenes and dialogues, if not of their tone. Just by way of illustration, note a sequence in which almost all of these processes occur. In the book, the tour takes place in Rio, in the Tijuca forest; in the film, as no location is specified, in fact the only external scene, apart from the beginning and the end, the arrival and departure of the housekeeper, we remain, for all intents and purposes, in São Paulo. The love scene between the two, in turn, is preceded by a dialogue in German (p. 109), therefore displaced from the original space, the Jundiaí farm, shortly before Carlos' despair under the arbor. Finally, a comic tone is given to the outcome of the scene in the sequence. Sousa Costa, bothered by what is going on in his own beard, irritated at having to wait for the act to be consummated again, and still no sandwiches! (p. 119) sends for the two; If Carlos' answer to his question, what were you guys doing in there? (“Nothing, daddy, seeing! You don't know what you've lost!”), barely able to contain herself, to Fräulein's words, shortly afterwards, — “Mr. Sousa Costa, thank you very much! I have never seen anything more beautiful in my life!” — the father explodes in irony, and the audience in laughter: “Really, Fräulein… It's a beauty”.

Such changes, however, whether slight or major, are presided over by a certain unit of conception, and if there were economic restrictions, more than possible perhaps, even probable, the film knew how to take advantage of them. So much income, that it would not be out of place to even speak of an aesthetic option.

Let's start with the most visible, if we can speak like that in cinema, the progress of the narrative, slow, but markedly slow, and the staging, stopped, markedly stopped. The slow, almost fixed shots endow the film with a certain photographic peculiarity, to the point of converting it into a kind of family album. And this family album, coherently conceived, will be one of the merits of the film, capable of justifying, in turn, the strictly domestic ambience of the film, which begins and ends practically with the opening and closing of the gates of the Higienópolis mansion.

Let us note in this case the difference of the book, whose curve is visible. Domestic ambience, as in the film, until the consummation of the love act, in the exact middle of the novel, 50 pages, and after which it opens in some Brazilian chronicles, the chronicle of the Brazilian mother afflicted with her sick daughter,[2] the chronicle of the brazilian tour[3] and the chronicle of the “Brazilian journey”[4] by Central do Brasil (p. 122-9), until the false ending, with the discovery of the father, Fräulein's farewell and the overfinal.

By the way, by keeping wisely within the inner limits of the gate, the film avoids falling into the folkloric, the grotesque, something to which it would inevitably succumb if it wanted to reproduce the Brazilian chronicles of Mário de Andrade. Just think, for example, of the slapstick that would become the sequence if it transposed the fine crumb of the trip through Central…

The slow, steady, photographic shots, a trademark of the staging, however, do not exactly respond to the book's narration, which is busy, with its interventions and Machado's humor, almost as a counterpoint to the immobility of the narrated life; this photographic fixity, which characterizes the film's style of representation, responds, in its own way, to the genre that subtitles Mário's book — idyll, “comic” in Latin. In this sense, it is as if the film were dedicated to recording scenes of “that immobile but happy family” (p. 59), — a phrase, incidentally, that seems to have served as a starting point for the adaptation; to accumulate comics capable of forming together that collection of pleasant memories that every family album brings. It's the family idyll, let's say.

This photographic fixity, of a family album, is fully revealed at a certain point, close to the resolution of the plot, at the moment of the five classic family poses for a photo, just before Carlos enters Fräulein's room and is surprised by his father: 1 .ª) the patriarch standing, resting his protective hand on the shoulder of the seated woman; 2nd) the mother sitting and the daughters standing, the youngest one on each side and the oldest standing behind her; 3.) the mother and the youngest on her lap, framing their faces; 4.) the father sitting and the son behind, standing, resting his hand on his shoulder; 5.ª) the whole family, the children standing, surrounding the father and mother seated, the youngest next to the mother, the other next to the father, and the older ones behind, not forgetting the little girl at the feet, also from the family, as we know, the cook's daughter, except Fräulein, of course, an episode necessary for the good education of young people but already discarded.

Decidedly photographic, the fixity, which affects most of the framings and commands the staging, still converts, in certain planes, into pictorial fixity. Thus, in the middle of a German class in the living room, and at the beginning of the pupil's passion for the teacher, a painting of Fräulein half undressed, in front of the mirror, languidly bathing, is reproduced, a painting like “Nude in the bath” (like of the reproduction on top of the family sofa), and which could very well be his imagination, or hers, of how she imagines herself dreamed by him in her intimacy. Thus, a little before the kiss, and in the midst of another photographic sequence, we see the black cook sitting at a table in the kitchen, resting. Both shots, the paintings reminding (reproducing?) academic, pre-modernist painting.

Such shots, sometimes photographic, sometimes pictorial, underlie the unitary conception of the staging, and, in their best moments, go much further, as is the case of the sequence of photos of the mansion, inaugurated by Mozart's Turkish March and soon replaced by the theme from the love idyll, composed by Francis Hime, — sequence that precedes the kiss in the library and seals the love passion: 1) the office, with the dusty light filtered through the curtain; 2) the seahorse fountain, turned off; 3) the doll in the grass; 4) the statue of Cupid in the garden; 5) “Preta Resting” and 6) the washerwoman hanging clothes.

At this point, the composition achieves a kind of still-life in cinema that gives food for thought. In addition to the unitary and coherent conception, photographic, pictorial, as we have said, or the support and continuity of the narrative, functions that they perform with brilliance; beyond even the test of virtuosity, with reproducing what would be, in effect, by successive and quick frames, an idyllic narrative in cinema, we begin to feel, in the midst of our natural involvement with the bourgeois drama on screen, the temporal distance of the narrated.

But that's not all. Just like the still life,[5] drawing attention to the artistic conventions of representation, forces one to distance, the quick panoramic tour, starting from the office and returning to it, through the mansion at rest in the afternoon, through the immobile but happy life of the São Paulo bourgeoisie of the 20s, forces the foot- back. What does a close-up of “Preta Resting” do, in the midst of the afternoon drowsiness of the manor Vila Laura, if not to suddenly awaken in us the universe of Casa Grande & Senzala? It is then that we feel the critical distance grow — the same distance that, towards the end of the film, the sequence of family photos, which we have already mentioned, will clearly be forced.

The two sequences, both the portraits of the house and the portraits of the family, for not being directly part of the narrative, for escaping the pure logic of the story, acquire such an emblematic status that they function as a kind of miniature of the film's poetics. One, converting it, from the narrative point of view, into a family album; another, from the plastic point of view, converting it into a still life. And both, together, family album, still life, imposing a critical eye. Because the family album is social convention,[6] in the film, and it is also an artistic convention, both of the film, of its photographic representation, and in the film, of the photographic representation of the time;[7] and the still life is a social convention, black women toiling and gentlemen enjoying themselves, and it is also an artistic convention, not only in the film, in its plastic figuration, but also in the film, with its seahorse fountain and its statuette of Cupid in the garden. And it will be from this perfect conjugation of the two miniature sequences that irony is born, a figure known for distance in an art that was classically consecrated for seeking to eliminate it at all costs.

The film also follows the trail of the many ironies scattered throughout the book, and as if opened by the subtitle of idyll, ironic, given by Mário, as the critics pointed out.[8] The Turkish March, the theme of the family, happily marks not only Maria Luísa's progress at the piano, the family's future Guiomar Novais, but also Carlos' progress in German, language and — language! Thus, both begin tentatively, on the keyboard and in love, and both become established throughout the film. When the album closes, with the classic poses, the music lesson and the love lesson are over. Maria Luísa already plays the Marcha perfectly and Carlos already sings, in a friendly duet, in the language of Goethe, symptomatically, the “Canção do Exílio”, by Gonçalves Dias.

In this moment of ironic, idyllic happiness, at the end of the love lesson and the end of the music lesson, with Maria Luísa's piano playing bordering on perfection, all commanded by the lovely music of Mozart, the instant in which the album of that " immobile but happy family”, (reproduction of the fake ending of the book?) we can speculate a little about the sound and meaning. The two themes, the familiar and the loving, Mozart's and Hime's, (deliquescent... Wagnerian?) fight all the time, like brothers, or like the two brothers in the film, Maria Luísa and Carlos, now one, now the other invading other people's space; now the Turkish March penetrates, cheerful, prying, familiar, in full idyll in the library, now the amorous theme invades, for example, the family recesses, as in the miniature sequence of the still life, the photos of the house, and announces the kiss of the lovers.

It can also be argued that, in their own way, the two themes, in their contrast and dispute, also reproduce the various counterpoints of the book. On a first level, the internal opposition of the “German character” in Fräulein (Mozart/man-of-life x Hime/man-of-dream); on another level, the opposition between the two characters: the Brazilian (Mozart/happy, gallant, frivolous, unconscious, etc., etc.) and the German (Hime/serious, conscious, unhappy, profound, tragic, etc., etc.) and, still , in a third, between the mobility of the Mario-Andradine narration (Mozart/light, fast, humorous) and the immobility of the narrated (Hime/slow, smooth, sad).

Speculation aside, we can assure you, with certainty, at least, that the issue of national character was not thematized, a question of time, of our first Modernism, and which the film intelligently evades. Therefore, we must look elsewhere for the actuality of adaptation, the meaning of carrying it out half a century later, and the relevance of criticism, the meaning of studying it after almost a quarter of a century.

The film is from the period, as they say, without a doubt, historical, if you like, it does not deny either its staging (costumes, scenography, acting) or its style of representation. The photographic, pictorial fixity converts it into a family album, as we have seen, with its public face and its secret face, like every album, and it is precisely this that we must question. What is the social or current reason, then, for this private “comic”?

If Mário's novel, as Telê wants, is “pro-woman” (p. 25), the film is frankly feminist, of a feminism that is undoubtedly discreet, latent, but unquestionable. The housekeeper's presence is dominant, especially in the opening sequences, when it is reinforced by Hime's music, whose recurrent motif, leitmotiv, Fräulein's theme, so to speak, creates an atmosphere conducive to its appearance. As if that weren't enough, Escorel's Fräulein is not only a dignified woman, as in Mário, but above all — strong. She suffers, visibly, (how can I forget Lilian Lemmertz's expression?) But this, as it were, refines her character. Unlike Mario's, she doesn't cry,[9] not in the game,[10] not jealous,[11] she has almost no weaknesses, not even the one she confesses, who opens the book.[12] For this Fräulein, therefore, it would not be convenient, in a fit of jealousy, to make an untimely appointment with Carlos,[13] a decisive change that puts her back in the position of being oppressed, perhaps the one who has no choice but to consent to the demands of her boss, father or son. For this subdued Fräulein, it would also not be convenient to reproduce, on the walk to Tijuca, in a spasm of happiness and terror, Munch's expressionist cry.[14]

In short, it is hers, therefore, this worthy and strong Fräulein, subjected to an adverse social situation, the point of view that structures the film, a point of view that is sometimes narrative, through narration over, but above all affective point of view. She is obviously not the feminist, since she lives dreaming of a peaceful marriage, a peaceful home in her dear Germany, always daydreaming, in short, with that “ideal of bourgeois love” (p. 20); discreetly feminist is Escorel's adhesion, solidarity with the situation of the character, or of women in general. It is not by chance that the film devotes attention to Carlos' little sisters, Maria Luísa, Laurita and Aldinha, and their games; it is not by chance that a speech by Sousa Costa is added, when announcing Fräulein's departure, and hearing his wife's dismay, now that the girls were progressing so much, that Maria Luísa was already playing the Turkish March almost without error: “Paciência ! That scandalous love affair inside my own house disgusts me. Soon the girls are wanting it too!”

Alongside feminism, and as if accusing female education, the film's Freudianism rises, which is no different from that of the book.[15] Let us not forget the scene of explicit Oedipalism, in which Maria Luísa tells her mother that Fräulein is looking more and more like her, this between two shots of the lovers in bed. But, more than reproducing it, the film seems to concentrate Freudism, making it more consistent in the economy of the narrative. The hysterical signs of Maria Luísa, the eldest of them, to whom the film pays special attention, for being one of the preferred targets of “love hunger”[16] of Carlos, the Machucador, are directly associated with his jealous relationship with his brother. So, instead of seeing her pluck a palm tree[17] at the house of a friend of her mother's, we see her nervously plucking the wings of a dead butterfly, immediately after spying her brother kissing Fräulein through the library window. (Penis envy?)

Feminism is certainly a pledge of relevance to the film, perhaps the one with the most visibility, but its greater relevance, its true finding, resides, in our view, elsewhere, namely, in the critical distance that its photographic and pictorial figuration imposes, be it as a family album, or as a still life. The family album is not the book, obviously; even extracted from him, from a very brief passage of his,[18] rather, it means a construction of the film, and, as a formal elaboration, it represents, let's say, its contribution. And the distance that such figuration imposes is not comfortable either; quite the contrary, its ambiguity kind of feeds its critical charge. Because we know that the album can die, generations and more generations, centuries at times, to the point of asking ourselves, when closing it, if it is really dead. This is the impression that lasts until the end of the film.

Given the still present weight of “national familism”,[19] (it doesn't hurt to remember that the literal "training novel", which tells the book had no other purpose than the constitution of another family of good, and goods), and its power to exclude what is different, what is foreign, what is individual, above all, (it doesn't hurt to remember that Fräulein was not featured in the family photos), its contradiction, in short, with the “bourgeois individuation and universalization process”, we begin to doubt whether the film is only from the period, whether the picturesque painted there is also does not continue to portray us. It is not our time, without a doubt, but neither can we be sure that it is a completely different, or dead, time. Behold the ambiguity of the album.

More expressly, in Mário's lucid words, it is as if this persistent reality, which the film freezes in a family album, kept pointing us out again: “Carlos is nothing more than a boring bourgeois from the last century. He is traditional in the only thing that up to now Brazilian culture boils down to: education and manners. In huge part: bad upbringing and bad manners. Carlos is among us because he is incomparably more numerous than he still has in Brazil of nineteenth-century Brazilian bourgeois 'cultural' traditionalism. It does not manage to manifest the biopsychic state of the individual that can be called modern. Carlos is just a presentation, a confirmation of Brazilian cultural constancy (…)” (p. 155).

The question that the film suggests, in an intelligent update, no longer involves the “national character” of the Brazilian, but rather, as I already intuited — contradictorily[20] — the writer himself, for “Brazilian culture”, for this “cultural constancy” that has been crossing centuries. Historical constancy, as the colonial legacy that it is, more than anthropological.

The film's lesson couldn't be any other, then, than to insinuate that our Brazilian culture, familist, parentelistic, survives until today, like every family album, more or less musty, but alive — unfortunately.[21]

*Airton Paschoa is a writer, author, among other books, of the life of penguins (Nankin).

Version, with slight modifications, of an article originally published in the journal cinemas n.º 19, Sep/Oct/1999 with the title “The poetics of love lesson: family album, still life, living society”.

Reference:


love lesson

Brazil, 1975, 80 minutes.
Direction: Eduardo Escorel.
adaptation of the novel To love, intransitive verb: idyll (1927), by Mário de Andrade. road map: Eduardo Coutinho and Eduardo Escorel.
photography and camera: Murilo Salles.
Music: Francis Hime and Mozart's “Turkish March”.
Assembly: Gilberto Santeiro.
Costumes and scenography: Anísio Medeiros.
Audio: Vítor Raposeiro and Roberto Melo. Cast: Lilian Lemmertz (Fräulein), Irene Ravache (Dona Laura), Rogério Froes (Sousa Costa), Marcos Taquechel (Carlos) and Maria Cláudia Costa (Maria Luísa); William Wu (Tanaka), Deiá Pereira (Matilde, cook) and Marie Claude (Celeste, maid and laundress); Magali Lemoine (Laurita), Mariana Veloso (Aldinha) and Rogéria Olimpo (Marina, daughter of Matilde).
production management: Marco Altberg.
Production: Luiz Carlos Barreto, Embrafilme, Eduardo Escorel and Corisco Filmes.

Notes

[1] The edition used, based on the second edition of 1944, recast, is the tenth, and came out in 1987 by Editora Itatiaia, from Belo Horizonte, accompanied by texts by the author, “Mário de Andrade — Postfácio Inédito (1926?)” and “The Purpose of love, intransitive verb — 1927”, editorial titles, and the introduction of Telê Porto Ancona Lopez, “A difficult conjugation”. The pages quoted belong to her.

[2] "Don't be offended, Matilde, a mother with a sick daughter, doesn't think of politeness. It is true. Dona Laura returns with the most lovingly prepared pussanga, climbs the exhausting stairs, insists on taking it herself! the drink for Fräulein. Only for Fräulein, who, at the bedroom door, her legs go limp, she becomes silly, her eyes blind with tears.

            — She's doing well, Dona Laura. More cheerful even. And almost no fever.

            "God hear you, Fräulein!" I wait for the xicra here, I don't have the courage to see my daughter suffer!

            And wait bent over. Which! so it cannot be! He stiffens his body, guns of temerity flash in his new gaze, he enters the room.

            - My daughter! it's better!

            Maria Luísa takes the white ribbons from her lips off the china and smiles in martyrdom. Dona Laura petrified. The frosted glass of the whitewash scares her, she thinks her daughter is going to die. She receives the cup almost without a gesture. While Fräulein tucks the patient back in the covers, dona Laura leaves without saying anything. But she again, she doesn't know what dominates her and moves her, she puts her cup on a chair somewhere, she comes to kneel next to her daughter, face to face, little daughter!... In convulsive sobs, she leaves in a rage. Maria Luísa is startled at first. Then she pretends to laugh, as she already knows her mother's quirks. But that question always remains...

            “Fräulein…

            — What is it, Maria Luisa?

            “Fräulein, really say it… I'm going to die, yeah!

            — What an idea, Maria Luisa. It won't die. You are already much better.

            There's a rage at these exaggerated mothers. Brazilian (...)” (pp. 113-4).

[3] "(...) Everyone climbed into the car, very satisfied. But I see a long stretch between Fräulein's joy and that of these Brazilians. Fräulein was happy because he was going to recover from the uncultivated land, enjoy a little virgin air, experience nature. These Brazilians were happy because they were going for a ride in the car and mainly because that was how they spent the whole day, thank God! Without a car and good roads they would never know Tijuca. Fräulein would even go marching and down to earth. These Brazilians would wear out their bodies. Fräulein was going to take the body to win. The body of these Brazilians is closed, Fräulein's body is open. She was equal to earthly things, they kept themselves indifferent. Result: Fräulein was confused with nature. These Brazilians would suffer the proud and sterile taste of exception.

            (...) Carlos doesn't know Tijuca. After the tour, he will continue to discover Tijuca. Ultimately for Carlos as for these Brazilian guys in general: Tijuca is only walkable with women. If not: beast leg. Well pine nuts! see trees and land... If only they were mine... coffee plantation...” (p. 118).

[4] "(...) The Norwegian woman glared at Aldinha, and Fräulein, thus traveling backwards, caught the other's gaze. She was embarrassed, in fact everything embarrassed her on that Brazilian trip, and authoritatively tried to make Aldinha sit down. But the children, with their parents there, would not obey” (p. 124).

 

[5] See, in the exemplary analysis of Bandeira’s poem “Maçã”, undertaken by Davi Arrigucci Júnior, the historical and pictorial meaning of still life, this “kind of icon of private life”, a genre that is born from the appreciation of the bourgeois interior and its life calm, silent, immobilized, and as if modernly reborn, with Cézanne, for what it offers to formal research (Humility, passion and death – the poetry of Manuel Bandeira, Sao Paulo, Co. das Letras, 1990, p. 25-28).

[6] “Family portraits are fundamentally linked to rites of passage — those that mark a change of situation or exchange of social category. They are taken on birthdays, christenings, New Years, weddings and funerals. Portraits quickly became part of these broader rituals, which mark the passage from child to adult, from single to married, from living to dead. They are records of moments made sacred by the alteration of normal and repetitive time. They mark an interval of social indefinition, of the transition in which borders and thresholds are crossed, which gives them an ambiguous character and a sacred aura (...)” (Miriam Moreira Leite, Family portraits — historical photography reading, São Paulo, Edusp, 1993, p. 159).

[7] “(…) In the [portraits] of this collection, the solemnity of the attitudes and the upright frontal position (frequently attributed to the long exposure time of the old machines) are replaced in the 20s by a dreamy attitude (in the young women) or compassionate (in the mother of young children). (…) Apart from the compressed laughter of children and adolescents forced to uncomfortably stare at the camera and wait for the photographer to act, apparently, adults have no reason to smile. In the case of women, it should be added, physiognomies gain rigidity and great severity with advancing age” (Id., P. 97).

[8] Tele Porto Ancona Lopez, on. cit., P. 17.

[9] “ — (…) But I'm not just here as someone who sells themselves, that's a shame.

            "But Fräulein I didn't mean to!"

            — … that sells! No! If unfortunately I'm no longer a virgin, I'm not either... I'm not a loser.

            Two real tears swelled in her eyes. They hadn't rolled yet and were already wetting his speech:

            — And love is not what Mr. Sousa Costa thinks it is. (...)

            Face polished by wistful tears, who had seen Fräulein weep! …

            — … That's what I came to teach your son, ma'am. (...)

            He stopped panting. (...) She squeezed her breast with her hand, at the same time that a strong pain creased her face, incomprehensible like that! (…)” (p. 77/78).

[10] "Fräulein, shaken by nervous sobs, got into the car. They did. (…)” (p. 137)

[11] "(...) The case looked serious. Balls! he preferred kisses, Fräulein repelled him. And why did she cry! No one will ever know, he wept sincerely.

            He took advantage of the tears to continue the lesson. And little by little, between questions and dismay, bitten by sobs (…)” (p. 102).

[12] "      “Sorry to insist. You have to let her know. I wouldn't like to be taken for an adventurer, I'm serious. And I'm 35 years old, sir. I certainly won't go if your wife doesn't know what I'm going to do there. I have the profession that a weakness allowed me to exercise, nothing more, nothing less. It's a profession.” (p. 49)

[13] "Jealous Fräulein, regretting herself, traitor! he didn't even think about her anymore! there in the evening she couldn't take it anymore, she passed by him and murmured:

            - Midnight.

            Carlos calmed down all of a sudden, he didn't get mad at his sisters anymore, really. He was man.” (p. 95)

[14] See the introduction to the book, “The difficult conjugation”, by Telê Porto Ancona Lopez, p. 14.

[15] See Mário de Andrade's complaint, on the occasion of the book's launch, with the criticism that only made one see Freudism, also forgetting the “neovitalism doctrines that are in it” (About love, intransitive verb - 1927., op. quoted, p. 153).

[16] "This circumlocution of 'loving hungers' fits very well here. It avoids the 'libido' of psychoanalyst nomenclature, unsympathetic, vague, masculine, and of dubious reader understanding. Loving hungers are much more expressive and don't hurt anyone. (…)“ (p. 77)

[17] "He didn't mean it, only weak, sickly, nervous children are mean. Look at Maria Luísa… A couple of days ago, she went to her friend's tea. Because she found a hidden way to dismember the porcelain baby. When she went out, waiting for her mother in the garden, she plucked the palm tree. Case in point. But no one did not see and she did not say anything. If it was Carlos, I swear that picking up the doll would disarticulate the poor thing's arms in an instant. However, she would immediately show the misdeed, she would be scolded, embarrassed. Then he went to jump over the palm tree, made it easy, he found his foot in the expensive vase.

            "Dona Mercedes, I broke your vase!" I'm sorry!

            She would say the 'it doesn't matter', sedge inside. Then she vented:

            — Laura has an insufferable son! evil! you can't even imagine! Break everything on purpose! Different from her sister… Maria Luísa is so nice!…

            But that wouldn't do any harm to Carlos, at this hour, who knows? perhaps engulfed by new reigns, thinking of other things. Maria Luísa remembers, the other little palm… She regrets not having stripped it too” (p. 94).

[18] "(...) As for the surface of life, the photograph is already well known: The mother is sitting with her youngest daughter on her lap. The standing father rests his honorable hand protectively on her shoulder. The little bellies arranged themselves around them. The layout may vary, but the concept remains the same. Various layouts only demonstrate the progress that North American photographers have made in these times.” (p. 53).

[19] See the interpretation of Mário de Andrade's political and literary project by Roberto Schwarz, two girls (São Paulo, Cia. das Letras, 1997, p. 132-144).

[20] We said contradictorily because, first, Mario's concern with all characters is obsessive in the book, national, regional, continental, and so on (he speaks in Brazilian, São Paulo, Latin, everything in opposition to Europeans, from the north, not Latinos, of course, Germans, Norwegians, Dutch, etc.); and, secondly, because, despite the criticisms of our pre-modern, pre-bourgeois bio-psychism, prior to the constitution of the individual as an autonomous being, Brazilian familism is also viewed in a positive light, as a shield to “alienations of modern bourgeois civilization”, able by its “flexible, extensible nature and prone to accommodation in the collective” of overcoming the “egoistic walling” of modern societies (Schwarz, op. quoted, P. 140, emphasis in the original).

[21] Unfortunately for the article, only two years later Priscila Figueiredo's dense and scathing study of the book, In search of the unspecific: reading love, intransitive verb by Mario de Andrade (SP, Nankin, 2001).

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  • Letter to the presidentSquid 59mk,g 18/06/2024 By FRANCISCO ALVES, JOÃO DOS REIS SILVA JÚNIOR & VALDEMAR SGUISSARDI: “We completely agree with Your Excellency. when he states and reaffirms that 'Education is an investment, not an expense'”
  • A look at the 2024 federal strikelula haddad 20/06/2024 By IAEL DE SOUZA: A few months into government, Lula's electoral fraud was proven, accompanied by his “faithful henchman”, the Minister of Finance, Fernando Haddad
  • Strengthen PROIFESclassroom 54mf 15/06/2024 By GIL VICENTE REIS DE FIGUEIREDO: The attempt to cancel PROIFES and, at the same time, turn a blind eye to the errors of ANDES management is a disservice to the construction of a new representation scenario
  • PEC-65: independence or patrimonialism in the Central Bank?Campos Neto Trojan Horse 17/06/2024 By PEDRO PAULO ZAHLUTH BASTOS: What Roberto Campos Neto proposes is the constitutional amendment of free lunch for the future elite of the Central Bank
  • Chico Buarque, 80 years oldchico 19/06/2024 By ROGÉRIO RUFINO DE OLIVEIRA: The class struggle, universal, is particularized in the refinement of constructive intention, in the tone of proletarian proparoxytones
  • Volodymyr Zelensky's trapstar wars 15/06/2024 By HUGO DIONÍSIO: Whether Zelensky gets his glass full – the US entry into the war – or his glass half full – Europe’s entry into the war – either solution is devastating for our lives
  • The melancholic end of Estadãoabandoned cars 17/06/2024 By JULIAN RODRIGUES: Bad news: the almost sesquicentennial daily newspaper in São Paulo (and the best Brazilian newspaper) is rapidly declining

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