Afro-Brazilian Avataras: Gandhi’s Sons Samba in South America

Pravina Shukla


This article is a study of how a new diasporic culture is created not by the native inheritors of that culture but by others. The Filhos de Gandhy or Sons of Gandhi have been part of the annual Brazilian carnival for the last 52 years. The curious thing is that the Gandhi they celebrate for his fight for racial justice is far removed from the real man-the 5,000-strong, all-male
groups of Filhos de Gandhy are bejewelled, sexual, non-vegetarian and violent. It is amazing how notions of India and Gandhi, surviving in African memories, have been revived by an African diaspora in far away South America.

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