This article explores the interweaving of the traditional, the modern, and the postmodern into the practice of Candombléé, an African-derived religion of Brazil. Multiple and competing perspectives on what is traditional or legitimate Candombléé practice coexist today. Over the course of the twentieth century, such claims about authenticity have been staked by an increasingly wider variety of agents——including government officials, social activists, college professors, and tour guides——and have been mediated by an expanding array of means of representation, including television and the Internet. Here I examine some of the ways that candomblecistas have actively responded to and shaped the shifting context in which they practice their religion.
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