Feb 02, 2023  
2023 January Term Course Catalog 
2023 January Term Course Catalog
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JAN 120 - Capoeira: The Brazilian Art of Resistance

Upper division
Full credit
MTuWTh 9:00 AM - 11:45 AM

This course will give students an understanding of Capoeira, a Brazilian martial Martial Art that disguises itself as a dance form. Capoeira was developed as a “fight” and a form of resistance by enslaved Africans in Brazil during the 16th Century and still lives on through many rodas around the world today. As far as the theoretical portion of this course, students will learn Brazilian history, but more specifically, Afro Brazilian history and culture, as well as the terminology for the basic Capoeira movements: the kicks, dodges, the songs, and so forth. Another aspect of this course will be the actual learning of the movements and the Capoeira Circle, or “game” (jogo), which is popularly known as the “fight” with a local Capoeira Instructor - In other words, students will have daily Capoeira lessons. Students should approach this course as a Cultural investigation into the historical and cultural roots of Capoeira, as well as a Physical Activity beginner course, therefore previous martial arts or dance experience is not necessary or required.

Capoeira is ultimately a Brazilian art form that combines elements of martial arts, dance, and music. Practitioners of the “sport” are often referred to as “fighters that dance” or “dancers that fight”. While it is essentially a martial art that uses movements closely associated with Karate, (such as the kicks), the practice of capoeira focuses on being able to improvise movements with a partner keeping a constant flow and actually avoiding contact, while still feigning it. So there is no touching in Capoeira. In Capoeira Circles, the equivalent of sparring is called “playing”, as partners are usually testing each other’s skills and creating a “dialogue” through movements while avoiding actual harm. During this beginner Capoeira Course, students will develop these skills, which require body and space awareness, movement, strategy, and harmony. Additionally, by the end of the semester, students will also have the opportunity to make their own “Berimbau” - the Brazilian musical instrument typically played during Capoeira Rodas.  

Instructor(s): Samantha Nogueira Joyce
Email:  snj2@stmarys-ca.edu

Prerequisites & Notes

Prerequisites:  None
Course Fee:  335

Credits: 1

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