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The Murder of an Important Afro-Brazilian Cultural Figure Has Brazilians Reeling in Run-Up to Vote

Mestre Moa de Katendê—a capoeira master and advocate for Afro-Brazilians—was killed after saying he would not support hard-right candidate for president, Jair Bolsonaro.

Reginaldo Rosário da Costa, 63, entered his neighborhood bar last Sunday night to celebrate. His preferred candidate for President of Brazil, the center-left Fernando Haddad, had avoided a first-round defeat by the neo-fascist Jair Bolsonaro.

Locals knew Rosário as Mestre Moa de Katendê in his Salvador neighborhood. He was a capoeira master and he traveled around the world promoting Afro-Brazilian culture.

But not everyone was happy.

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Preta-Rara. Photo: Juh Guedes.

9 Afro-Brazilian Musicians You Need to Check Out

Black musicians & rappers like Preta Rara, Xênia Franca and Bia Ferreira are directly addressing oppression and racism in Brazil.

Brazil is undergoing a modern black movement in which young Afro-Brazilians are embracing their blackness and openly addressing racism. Afro-Brazilian artists are now expressing this movement through their music and fashion style. In a country where people—black and white—have been brainwashed to believe that racism doesn't exist, this is revolutionary.

Black musicians and rappers like Preta Rara, Xênia Franca and Bia Ferreira directly address oppression and racism in the lyrics of their music and wear clothes and makeup that highlight their blackness and African heritage. These aren't the musicians you'll see on Globo television, but they will easily pack a show in Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo or Salvador.

Below is a list of some Brazil's hottest conscious Afro-Brazilian musicians with, of course, a couple of bonus funk musicians. The list below doesn't include Liniker e os Cameloews, Karol Conka or Elza Soares because they have been featured before on OkayAfrica.

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Image courtesy of Érica Malanguinho.

The Seeds of Marielle: These Courageous Afro-Brazilian Women Are Running for State Office Despite the Odds

Here are 11 of the inspirational black women running for political office in Brazil's upcoming national elections.

Marielle Franco, 38, a black politician from Rio de Janeiro, died fighting for the rights of women and favela dwellers. On March 14 armed men gunned the councilwoman down in her car in the center of Rio de Janeiro with nine shots—four to the head.

Her assassination hit black women hard.

As a councilwoman from the Maré favela, she denounced the police brutality that favela residents, most of them black, regularly experienced. Many black women felt it was a direct attack on the potential of black women to ascend to power in politics. But her assassination came at a unique time—six months before Brazil's state and national elections. After Marielle's death, black women felt empowered to run for political office and in this year's elections, black women candidates are more visible than ever. These women are now collectively called the "Sementes de Marielle"—the seeds of Marielle.

The national elections take place on October 7. There are 231 black women running for political office in the state of Rio de Janeiro—almost twice the 2014 number (125). They are running for governor, deputy federal and state deputy. This should come as no surprise, black women make up 27 percent of Brazil—the largest group. The candidates represent the diversity of black women in Brazil. They are evangelical. They follow Afro-Brazilian religions. Some are from favelas. Some grew as middle class. Some are college-educated.

Below is a sampling of the seeds of Marielle.

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