Cosmological innovation in contemporary Brazilian Umbanda and its impact on inter-religious self-definition and legitimation

Leading researcher: Diana Espírito Santo
Research group: Circulation and Place-Making
Type of project: Post-doctoral research
Status: Concluded
Keywords: Umbanda | Urban afro-brazilian religion | Identity | Religious creativity


Main institution: CRIA
Participant institutions: n.a.
Funding: FCT
Reference: SFRH/BPD/47117/2008
Starting date: 01-04-12

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Abstract

The research project included two new ethnographic and conceptual dimensions from its original emphasis on questions of learning, personhood and cosmology. It was motivated by a need to address themes that go beyond the idiosyncrasies of specific temples and practitioners and affect broader questions in the sociology of Brazilian religions, particularly in the urban milieu. The first is the category of processes of cosmological innovation and creativity. Under this aim, I examined contemporary Umbanda’s ongoing generation of forms of cosmic mythology, that articulate questions of race, history, identity, and social marginalization in current society, understanding how these yield particular forms of national imagery through its sacred geography. The second is the role of Umbanda in processes of inter-religious self-definition in its wider religious ecology. Under this aim, I analyzed the ways contemporary Umbanda produces points of inter-religious conflict and convergence in its surrounding religious environment.

Researchers from CRIA

IDNamePositionProjTitleProject typeStatus
pub109*Clara SaraivaSupervisorproj34*Cosmological innovation in contemporary Brazilian Umbanda and its impact on inter-religious self-definition and legitimationPost-doctoral researchConcluded
pub338*Diana Espírito SantoResearch scholarproj34*Cosmological innovation in contemporary Brazilian Umbanda and its impact on inter-religious self-definition and legitimationPost-doctoral researchConcluded
Other researchers

ResearcherPositionInstitutionProjOutrosTitulo_EN