Bahai Cuisine and Other Delicacies: Canadian-Brazilian Cultural Encounters and the Invisible Neighbour

Albert Braz


Although activities like travel and translation are supposed to expand one’s cultural horizons, it is widely accepted that one is not always able to escape the imprint of one’s own society. Perhaps more critical, in the process of engaging discursively with other peoples, one runs the risk of revealing one’s lack of interest in them, as reflected in a limited knowledge of their culture and history. This essay attempts to demonstrate this through an examination of the cavalier treatment of the Portuguese language in two contemporary Canadian texts about Brazil, Brazilian Journal by P.K. Page and Projection: Encounters with My Runaway Mother by Priscila Uppal, along with the idiosyncratic attitude toward Canadian history in the nineteenth-century Brazilian work Poemas americanos I: Riel by Mathias Carvalho. The essay’s central objective is not to discourage writers from exposing themselves to other societies and chronicling their experiences. Rather, it aims to promote openness to difference through a willingness to engage with other languages and other ways of seeing and being. Indeed, the essay concludes by suggesting that writers develop strategies to remind them that they are dealing with cultures with which they are not intimately familiar, and thus inadvertently avoid injuring foreign sensibilities.


Canada; Brazil; travel; translation; cultural literacy

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ISSN: 2254-1179
Entidad editora: Universidad de Huelva. Servicio de Publicaciones
Licencia de usoCreative Commons 4.0