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Aquilombamento, Entrepreneurial Black Placemaking in an Anti-Black City

Aquilombamento, Entrepreneurial Black Placemaking in an Anti-Black City While an abundance of research focuses on how Black American entrepreneurs respond to systemic racism, less attention has been paid to examining how Black entrepreneurs outside the United States respond. This research addresses the extent to which entrepreneurship is a response to systematic racism, and “Black” businesses exist in a “color-blind” society. I examine Brazil because of its color-blind racial ideology; moreover, Afro-Brazilians comprise 54 percent of the country’s population and 50 percent of its entrepreneurs. Through participant observation and in-depth interviews at 28 Black-owned businesses, I find Afro-Brazilians challenge anti-Blackness through a process I call aquilombamento. As a method of entrepreneurial placemaking, I argue that aquilombamento enables Afro-Brazilian entrepreneurs to intentionally construct culturally significant physical spaces that openly resist and challenge the existing racial order. Aquilombamento functions through three mechanisms: (1) the entrepreneurs make Black culture readily perceivable, (2) the entrepreneurs center Black knowledge and understanding, and (3) the entrepreneurs conceive a community. In explicating aquilombamento, I illustrate an economic and symbolic value system that privileges Blackness in a “color-blind” society. I identify a critical distinction between Black-owned businesses and Black businesses. And, I underscore the important role of entrepreneurs in Black placemaking. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sociology of Race and Ethnicity SAGE

Aquilombamento, Entrepreneurial Black Placemaking in an Anti-Black City

Sociology of Race and Ethnicity , Volume 8 (2): 15 – Apr 1, 2022

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Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
© American Sociological Association 2022
ISSN
2332-6492
eISSN
2332-6506
DOI
10.1177/23326492221077945
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

While an abundance of research focuses on how Black American entrepreneurs respond to systemic racism, less attention has been paid to examining how Black entrepreneurs outside the United States respond. This research addresses the extent to which entrepreneurship is a response to systematic racism, and “Black” businesses exist in a “color-blind” society. I examine Brazil because of its color-blind racial ideology; moreover, Afro-Brazilians comprise 54 percent of the country’s population and 50 percent of its entrepreneurs. Through participant observation and in-depth interviews at 28 Black-owned businesses, I find Afro-Brazilians challenge anti-Blackness through a process I call aquilombamento. As a method of entrepreneurial placemaking, I argue that aquilombamento enables Afro-Brazilian entrepreneurs to intentionally construct culturally significant physical spaces that openly resist and challenge the existing racial order. Aquilombamento functions through three mechanisms: (1) the entrepreneurs make Black culture readily perceivable, (2) the entrepreneurs center Black knowledge and understanding, and (3) the entrepreneurs conceive a community. In explicating aquilombamento, I illustrate an economic and symbolic value system that privileges Blackness in a “color-blind” society. I identify a critical distinction between Black-owned businesses and Black businesses. And, I underscore the important role of entrepreneurs in Black placemaking.

Journal

Sociology of Race and EthnicitySAGE

Published: Apr 1, 2022

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