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The Sights and Voices of Dispossession: The Fight for the Land and the Emerging Culture of the MST (The Movement of the Landless Rural Workers of Brazil)


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Emerging culture by categories -> Culture: Icons, symbols, and monuments 57 resources (Cultural categories devised by & © Else R P Vieira)

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Photo donated by the MST. Reproduced by permission.


Curso de Verão. Mural signed by three artists commemorating the first Summer Course for Landless activists, 1990.
This 1990 mural, painted by three artists for a summer course of study for Landless activists, is divided into 4 sections, each representing a component of the MST’s curriculum: in the upper left, the political history of Latin America, with an explicit reference to the U.S. military intervention to defeat the Farabundo Mart National Liberation Front (FMLN) in El Salvador; the upper right refers to grassroots activism and the training necessary to lead land occupations and the establishment of Landless camps and settlements; in the lower right, an abundance of fruits, vegetables, grains, and fish represents the MST’s technical training in diverse areas of agriculture and pisciculture; finally, the lower left presents an allegory of Brazilian popular culture, with its multi-ethnic foundations. At the center, overlapping these four pedagogical components is an allegory of service and solidarity -- the washing of another’s feet.

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Murals : Edited by Malcolm McNee. Translation © Else R P Vieira.


November 2002

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Mural Painting
Murals, conceived of and painted collectively, have become important as allegorical representations of the defining themes of state and national level congresses of the MST. They also draw upon and strengthen the symbols of the MST.
Else R P Vieira

See also: The Plastic Arts in the MST: Beauty as a Human Right

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Landless Voices hosted by the
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Project Director & Academic Editor: Else R P Vieira
Web Site Producer: John Walsh
Web Site created: January 2003
Last updated: July 5th 2016