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The Senator George J.Mitchell Institute
for Global Peace, Security and Justice

Brazil Project

Field Work in the Maré Favelas, Rio de Janeiro Brazil

This aspect of the project addresses the lasting effectiveness of participatory sound art projects which reflect ideas of both resistance and reconciliation. The first stage of the research is to revisit the project ‘Som da Maré’, led by Professor Pedro Rebelo in 2014. The research in Rio will use content analysis, in-depth semi-structured interviews and surveys to analyse the on-going effects of the Museu da Maré exhibition in transforming memories of and socio-political responses to conflict, as well as the effects of militarization of the favela on 20 young people. 

In May 2014, the participative Project Som da Maré brought together the creative energy of a group of inhabitants from a cluster of favelas in Maré (Rio de Janeiro) through the sonic arts. The work recalled everyday experiences, memories, stories and places. These memories elicited narratives that leave traces in space while contributing to the workings of local culture. The result of four months of workshops and fieldwork formed the basis of two cultural interventions: an exhibition in Museu da Maré and guided soundwalks in the city of Rio de Janeiro. These interventions presented realities, histories and ambitions of everyday life in the Maré favelas through immersive sound installation, documentary photography, text and objects. Som da Maré included groups of participants who together have developed themes, materials and strategies for the articulation of elements of everyday life in Maré. Participants include secondary level students under the Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (FAPERJ) “Young Talent” scholarships and their families, post-graduate students at the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), PhD students from the Sonic Arts Research Centre (Queen’s University Belfast) and members of the Cia Marginal, a theatre company based in Maré.

The project also included the participation of academics from music, ethnomusicology, visual art and architecture at the UFRJ and a partnership with the Museu da Maré, making up a team of over thirty people. The project was curated and coordinated by Pedro Rebelo, Professor and Director of Research at the Sonic Arts Research Centre, Queen’s University Belfast and visiting senior professor at the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro.

Sonic arts methodologies will elicit participants’ understandings of their environments and their responses to the sounds and experiences of conflict in both Brazil and Northern Ireland. 


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The Senator George J. Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice
Queen's University Belfast
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