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Space and representation in the experience of the Pankararu indigenous people in the city of São Paulo

Grant number: 22/01669-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): January 01, 2023
Effective date (End): December 31, 2023
Field of knowledge:Applied Social Sciences - Architecture and Town Planning - Fundamentals of Architecture and Urbanism
Principal Investigator:Luiz Antonio Recaman Barros
Grantee:Ana Clara Matta Verpa
Host Institution: Faculdade de Arquitetura e Urbanismo (FAU). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:16/22704-8 - Architecture and urbanism, addressing the social space in the 21st Century: segregation strategies and appropriation tactics, AP.TEM


This research aims to broaden the debate and the theoretical and design possibilities of Architecture and Urbanism in the multicultural and multiethnic scenario of large Brazilian cities. Its specific theme deals with indigenous communities, in particular the urban experience of the Pankararu indigenous people who nowadays live in the neighborhood of Real Parque, in São Paulo's southern region. The problem that arises from this specific theme is their symbolic production and creative appropriation of space, which is a latent necessity for the Pankararu people, intrinsic to their way of life and of living. In the context of São Paulo, however, there are countless difficulties and spatial constraints that jeopardize their existence and identity. This research's objective is to investigate the spatial, symbolic, and cultural dynamics of this group through a theoretical and methodological approach that is linked to the sociology of space and to urban anthropology. These areas contribute to a social handling of Architecture and Urbanism and provide a better proximity to the socio-cultural realities of metropoles. The proposed methodology and research are marked by three moments: (1) field work, (2) rhythmanalysis, and (3) the establishing of design guidelines for Architecture and Urbanism. The result expected of this research is to comprehend the influence of physical space in the Pankararu people's way of life in São Paulo, and the extent to which it limits or allows this group's daily and ritualistic practices. Especially, it is to understand the mechanisms of urban appropriation in the keeping of traditions of a people original to rural Pernambuco in the context of the São Paulo metropolis. The expected final result consists in the presentation of design guidelines for the fields of Architecture and Urbanism for housing, infrastructure and public spaces in urban indigenous communities.

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