Echoes of Goa: São Paulo, Brazil

September 13, 2011 in Uncategorized | Comments (5)


Yesterday, at São Paulo University, met Prof. Dr. Lynn Mario T. Menezes de Souza.

His is a fascinating history of travel. His family hails from Salvador do Mundo in Goa (he is a ‘gaonkar’), but he grew up in Aden and was sent to boarding school in England. His was a very left-wing family (in the US he’d be called a ‘red-diaper baby’) and his political interests took him to Mozambique. Things didn’t work out as envisioned (do they ever?) and he decided to visit Brazil. He fell in love with the country and has been teaching literature in the Departamento de Letras Modernas in the Universadade de São Paulo for many years.

He told me about a novel about Goa, Os Bramanes, that was written in Portuguese by a Goan in the 19th century. He says it is regarded as a masterpiece. Unfortunately it has not been translated. I looked on the Net and could find nothing on it in English.

Considering how many writers – and Portuguese speaking writers, at that – there are in Goa, it is amazing – shocking! – that the book has not been translated yet. I hope someone is listening…




5 Responses to “Echoes of Goa: São Paulo, Brazil”

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  1. Comment by Shelly — September 13, 2011 at 10:50 am   Reply

    I hope someone is really listening out there… i am going to ask my scholar friends from Goa to dig out info about “Os Bramanes”

  2. Comment by VM — September 13, 2011 at 12:40 pm   Reply

    Dear Amitav,

    Os Brahmanes has been translated into English.

    Armando Menezes did it in the 1930’s, and a different version altogether was re-published just last week by Goa 1556 in a compilation of writings by Francisco Luis Gomes, the author who represented Goa with great distinction in the Portuguese Parliament in the 1860’s. Will keep a copy for your return…

    Loving your Brazil posts on this wonderful blog. Keep it up!


    • Comment by Amitav Ghosh — September 14, 2011 at 5:21 pm   Reply

      I stand corrected – thanks very much! But why does nothing show up (about the translation) when one googles the book? And I’m very glad you’re enjoying the posts! best. Amitav

  3. Comment by Clifford PereiraMarch 28, 2012 at 12:01 pm   Reply

    Dear Amitav,

    Our paths cross once again, this time in the cyber world. It was good to share the panel with you at the Nat. Maritime Mus. in London, and I was glad that you pointed the dearth of info on India in the archives there – I too have the same sentiments.

    I had heard of Os Brahmanes and was actually in NE Brazil this January researching the much unknown South Indian presence in the region in the 16th and 17th centuries and its contributions to Brazilian – specifically Bahian culture. Sadly I was not able to find a copy of Os Brahmanes.

    Hoping our paths cross again.


    • Comment by Chrestomather — March 28, 2012 at 12:57 pm   Reply

      You will be pleased to know that I have just this day received news of the publication of Os Brahmanes (it appears that it may have happened because of my post!). I will post something about it soon. In the meanwhile, good luck with your researches!

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