Popular culture

Popular culture represents a set of knowledge determined by the interaction of individuals. It brings together elements and cultural traditions that are associated with popular and oral language.


Thus, popular culture includes folklore, handicrafts, music, dances, parties, among others.


Folklore, used as a synonym for popular culture, is composed of a set of legends and myths transmitted between generations and represent the cultural and social heritage of a people.


It is worth noting that the term culture is very broad and includes behaviors, symbols and social practices. It is, therefore, a set of factors that make up a society, such as the knowledge, beliefs, customs and traditions of a specific people.


Literature, music, theater, dance, cuisine, religion, etc. stand out.


Brazilian popular culture

Brazilian popular culture

Folkloric Festival in Parintins, Amazonas, Brazil

Brazilian popular culture brings together a set of legends, myths and traditions of the country, which are based on the history and miscegenation of cultures, of which the most prominent are: Portuguese, African and indigenous.


Discover examples of popular culture that stand out in each area.


Brazilian popular literature

Literature of twine      Traditional literary cultural manifestation, especially in the northeastern interior. It is characterized by small books with woodcut covers, hanging from strings or strings.


Questions that begin with “What is, what is …?” and that, they usually have funny answers.


Proverbs and Sayings  Short phrases whose main social objective is to advise and warn.

Parliament       Children’s rhymes that amuse and work memorizing and fixing some concepts.

Legends of Brazilian folklore Set of stories and tales narrated by the people and transmitted from generation to generation.

Legends of the Southeast       Main legends of the Southeast Region of Brazil, such as, for example, the legend of Curupira and the legend of the headless Mule.

Legends of the Northern Region        Main legends of the Northern Region, such as the legend of Boto and the legend of Vitória-regia.

Legends of the South Region Main legends of the South Region, such as, for example, the legend of Negrinho do Pastoreio and the legend of Saci-pererê.

Legends of the Northeast Region       Main legends of the Northeast Region, such as, for example, the legend of the Red beard and the legend of the Fig Pope.

Legends of the Midwest Region        Main legends of the Midwest Region, such as, for example, the legend of the Mother of the Gold and the legend of the Water Negro.

Literature of twine

Cordel Literature Books

Popular Brazilian Music

Folk songs

Popular and traditional songs that are part of popular wisdom.


Wheel songs    Folk songs sung in a circle.

Lullabies          Songs sung to make children and babies sleep.

Samba Dance and musical genre, considered one of the most representative elements of Brazilian popular culture.

Country music One of the most popular musical styles in Brazil, where originally the sound of the viola predominated.

Viola Fashion  One of the main types of Brazilian country music, composed of viola solos and narrative speeches.

Bossa nova      Type of Brazilian popular music that has a strong influence of Rio samba and North American jazz.

MPB – Brazilian popular music           Brazilian musical genre that has a strong influence of Brazilian folklore, especially with regard to indigenous, African and European cultures.

wheel song

The cantigas de roda are also known as cirandas

Brazilian popular dances

Folk dances


Traditional dances characteristic of each Brazilian state, sometimes derived from religious rituals.

Frevo   Traditional folk dance in northeastern Brazil, especially in Recife and Olinda.

Gang   Traditional country dance of the June festivities.

Maracatu         Traditional dance from the state of Pernambuco, which mixes African, Portuguese and indigenous cultures.

Carimbó          Traditional dance of the state of Pará, which is marked by rotating movements.


Frevo group presentation

Brazilian popular festivals

Carnival           Party that takes place three days before Ash Wednesday, where, in some states, masquerade balls, costume parades and / or electric trios are common.

June parties     Popular festivals that take place in the month of June, where quadrille dances and typical foods such as canjica, rice pudding and corn cake are common.

Folia de Reis   Cultural festival of a religious nature, whose purpose is to commemorate the visit of the three wise men.

Nazare’s Cirio  Religious celebration celebrated in October, in Belém do Pará, in devotion to Nossa Senhora de Nazaré.

Feast of the Divine     Religious festival celebrated in May in different parts of Brazil, to worship the Holy Spirit.

Bumba my ox  Also called Boi-bumbá, it consists of a typical dance from the North and Northeast, where a theatrical performance takes place in which the ox is the main character.

Carnival Rio

Carnival parade in Rio de Janeiro

See also: Brazilian Culture

Popular culture and erudite culture

The term “popular” is in opposition to the term “scholarly”. In popular culture , traditions are carried out by the people, who participate in an organic and active way, and are therefore formed spontaneously.


The erudite culture , on the other hand, considered “superior”, is elected as the most “cultured”. That is, it is produced and appreciated by individuals who have greater purchasing power (elite) and therefore, it is more restricted.


Classical culture, unlike popular culture (which is formed by the interaction of people), is elite and demands studies.


It is associated with museums, libraries, theaters, cultural centers, classical and classical music performances, such as operas.


We must remember that no culture is superior to another. Each carries its cultural and social heritages, which develop according to several factors that involve cultural diversity .


See also: Classical Culture

Popular culture and mass culture

The mass culture , also called “pop culture” corresponds to that held by the cultural industry and conveyed in the mass media.


Both are associated with contemporary industrialized society, that is, with capitalist industrial production.


In this sense, art and culture are produced “artificially” to attract the masses, and with the main purpose of generating profit.


Thus, in mass culture, cultural and artistic products are marketed, unlike what happens in popular culture, which arises from the interaction of the people and is not imposed by the cultural industry.

Leave a Comment