Two Facets of Afro-Brazilian Neo-Traditionalism: New Yorubaness and African Islam

Anna Yurievna Siim, Nikolay Aleksandrovich Dobronravin


The purpose of the article is a comparative description of different trajectories in the formation of neo-traditional communities within the frames of trans-oceanic societies with the example of the Afro-Brazilian population. It focuses on the development of new identities on the base of re-invention of ethnic and/or ethno-confessional “roots” in the New World before and after the abolition of slavery. The increased focus on Africa in the history and culture of the Afro-Latin communities led to the re-interpretation of a homogenized African ethnicity, as well as of various ethnic and/or pseudo-ethnic identities, modern yorubanness being one of the most persistent. Yorubanness implies a religious and cultural entity at a transcontinental scale combining a local ethnic base with the pan-African and trans-Atlantic dimensions. The “re-invention” of Afro-Brazilian Islam as another facet of Afro-Brazilian neo-traditionalism may be looked upon on its own and as a part of the Yoruba narrative.


Afro-Brazilians, Yoruba, Islam, neo-traditional communities, Trans-oceanic societies.

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