Note: The blog stopped but the Learn Portuguese ebooks (sidebar) are still available, and will continue to be.
The Final Post has been viewed many times since I posted it and I feel like I need to say a little bit more…PS – You can still find me on Eyes on Recife, a side-project of mine started in 2012. Also, this site’s url will be eyesonbrazil.wordpress.com for a short time.
I started studying Brazilian culture at a time in my life when I was really in need of something meaty enough for me to grab onto with both hands and not let go, something I could count on to keep giving for a long time to come. Brazil was large enough to meet that need, even to the point that I still find myself wanting it to remain my teacher. I stopped blogging about it here, after many years, and yet I still find myself wanting to be taught more and, in turn, to be able to teach more.
What is of most interest to me these days is the Northeast because it’s so diverse and culturally rich, and full of lessons to be learned. It’s where tradition has long met, and even clashed with, modernity. As Clarice Lispector once said,
“(I grew up in Recife, and) I think that living in the Northeast or the North of Brazil is to live more intensely and closer to the real life of a Brazilian..”
These days, though, I think it can be said in another way as well. As a smart friend once explained to me one night in Natal, the Northeast (and, as an extension, Brazil) is not about the old meeting the new or, for example, the Amerindian coming face-to-face with the branco. Brazil isn’t a battle of “us vs. them”, it’s a single entity being confronted with its own inner dualities.
In any event, a large part of the reason I stopped blogging is that I want to do something more, something better and more focused, something…professional. Phrases like “go big or go home”, “do it well or don’t do it at all” come to mind. If I could have my way, I’d want a magazine or a travel documentary series, something fina that digs deep and where the inclusion of every detail is well-thought-out (a humble Brazil-focused Monocle-like publication, perhaps?). Not saying it’ll happen but it’s possible at some point Eyes On Brazil will get the word “blog” on the end, while Eyes On Brazil proper will become something more ambitious.
The Original “Final Post”
I started learning about Brazil when I was 22 and started this blog when I was 27. Now I’m 32 and also no longer going back and forth to Brazil like I did between ages 24 and 31. My interest in the country and culture remains but I’m looking to keep the written expression of that interest to current and future work. Plus, since I left Brazil almost 9 months ago, readership has fallen by over 50%, going from 20K views per month to under 10K (btw, unique visiters usually come out to be about half the view count). I attribute a lot of it to the plethora of sources for Brazil news out there today which didn’t exist when I started. Large, US and multinational news companies (not to mention many other blogs) are covering even the smallest of occurences and cultural aspects. This means what I do has to be done creatively or simply in a different manner, and I need to reserve that for paid work.
After sharing 5.5 years, or 65 months, of posts, this will be my last here. That being said, I will continue to update the films list and write at Street Smart Brazil if you’d like to keep reading my stuff. ; )
PS – A quick note on the stats. It’s possible my montly stats are more like 15K-20K but I just don’t know it, since WP doesn’t allow blog owners to know if an email subscriber has looked at a post. With 350 people receiving every post, it’s possible a day of 500 views is really 850 views, and so on. In any event, this remains my last post. Thank you for reading!