Rio de Janeiro
Urban Life through the Eyes of the City
Routledge – 2014 – 250 pages
"Through artistic imaginaries, media productions, social practices and spatial mappings, this book offers an insightful and original contribution to the understanding of Rio de Janeiro, one of the highly contested urban terrains in the world. Offering a rich diversity of examples extracted from lived experience, iconographic materials, and narratives, it provides innovative and compelling connections between theoretical questions and urban vignettes. Throughout the essays, the specificity of Rio de Janeiro is highlighted but framed in relation to theoretical questions that are relevant to major contemporary cities. The book underlines the dilemmas of a city that attempts to compete globally while confronting social inequality, violence, and novel forms of democratic agency. It retraces Rio de Janeiro’s modernist memories as the former political/cultural capital of Brazilian intelligentsia and national culture. It explores Rio as a city of popular culture, mestizo legacies, media productions, and cultural innovation."
'This is a richly textured and fascinating examination of Rio, one of those iconic places that has functioned as a laboratory of alternative visions of what makes or breaks the good city' - John Urry, Distinguished Professor of Sociology, Lancaster University
"These beautifully written narratives of the multilayered physical and cultural histories of Rio de Janeiro brilliantly illuminate the "sedimentation of history" in one of the world’s most complex urban cultures. Beatriz Jaguaribe reveals a keen sense of the play of the visual and material city as well as that of the present and the past. The book is a tour de force of urban cultural study and a rich inquiry into the multiple imaginaries and meanings of city culture." - Thomas Bender, Professor of History, New York University
"After the vogue of urban cultural studies in recent decades, only a few texts remain standing. Beatriz Jaguaribe’s Rio de Janeiro clearly falls into this select group. She knows the impossibility of writing about the city without exhausting all modes of examination and she does this superbly well, drawing on literature, theory and history with a richness and nuance which is both inspired and penetrating." - Adrián Gorelik, urban and intellectual historian, University of Quilmes / Conicet, Argentina
Introduction: The Eyes of the City 1. Imagining the Marvelous City: Spectacle and urban spaces 2. Modernist Ruins: National narratives and architectural forms 3. The Visible and the Invisibles: Photography and social imaginaries in Brazil 4. Carnival Crowds 5. Tropical Babylon: Copacabana and the poetics of nostalgia and decadence 6. Favelas: Realist aesthetics, consumption and authorship 7. Narrating the Streets Afterword