Brazilian Culture

Do's and Don'ts

  • Engage in discussions on topics such as soccer (football) and the natural landscapes of Brazil. These are welcome topics of conversation.
  • Have a willingness to be open and warm. This will help create a stronger dynamic, as Brazilians tend to interact in a warm-hearted manner.
  • Be open to invitations to join in social activities such as a game of soccer. It is a great way to interact with others and to build stronger relationships.
  • Show compassion for people’s problems and needs. It demonstrates a sense of consideration and warmth that is likely to be very appreciated by your Brazilian companion.
  • When talking to a Brazilian companion, inquire into the well-being of their family, spouse, children, etc. Family life is considerably important to Brazilians.
  • Try to accept appeals for help and support. It is generally not an attempt to be exploitative, but rather an expression of concern.
  • Be careful if you use hand gestures towards a Brazilian. Some gestures have different and unexpectedly strong meanings compared to Australia (see the Communication section for more details).

Do not’s
  • Avoid discussing or debating politics, poverty or religion. Whilst these topics are not taboo, not everyone is open to discussing them. Moreover, if it does come up as a topic of conversation, avoid expressing opinions in the form of a critique. Although Brazilians may be skeptical of their government and societal structure, criticism from a foreigner may be interpreted as an insult.
  • Avoid boasting about Argentina. As one of Brazil’s neighbouring countries, Argentina is thought to be a ‘rival’, in a similar way that New Zealand is to Australia.
  • Do not refer to Brazilians as ‘Latin Americans’. Typically, ‘Latin America’ is thought to refer to those countries that have connections to Spain.
  • Try not to be bothered by the lack of concern for punctuality. Arriving 15-30 minutes after the designated time is not considered late in Brazil.
  • Avoid boasting about your wealth, class or hierarchy. Brazilians appreciate a sense of humility.
  • Do not refer to Afro-Brazilian religions as ‘macumba’. This term has a negative meaning, and furthers the prejudices experienced by followers of Spiritism, Umbanda and Candomblé.
  • Avoid being sarcastic or mocking during conversations. Brazilians are generally optimistic and light-hearted and it is highly possible that wit or irony may be misunderstood. Light and inoffensive humour plays a larger part in Brazilian conversation.
  • Never ask a Brazilian why they are not ‘black’. This is typically taken to be a hurtful and ignorant comment, even if the person asking is genuinely naïve.
  • Do not be offended if you are called a ‘gringo’. This term is generally used not as an insult, but as a nickname towards foreigners or foreign things in general, regardless of how they look.
  • Avoid swearing. Cursing and blasphemy are considered to be offensive and a sign of poor manners.
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  • Population
    [July 2016 est.]
  • Languages
    Portuguese (official)
    Note: Less common languages include Spanish (border areas and schools), German, Italian, Japanese, English and a large number of minor Amerindian languages
  • Religions
    Roman Catholic Christianity (65.0%)
    Protestant Christianity (22.2%)
    Other Christianity (0.7%)
    Spiritist (2.2%)
    Other (1.4%)
    No Religion (8.0%)
    [2010 est.]
  • Ethnicities
    White (47.7%)
    Mulatto (43.1%)
    Black (7.6%)
    Asian (1.1%)
    Indigenous (0.4%)
    [2010 est.]
  • Cultural Dimensions
  • Australians with Brazilian Ancestry
    21,354 [2016 census]
Brazilians in Australia
  • Population
    [2016 census]
    This figure refers to the number of Australian residents that were born in Brazil.
  • Average Age
  • Gender
    Male (46.6%)
    Female (53.4%)
  • Religion
    Catholic Christianity (57.1%)
    Baptist Christianity (3.1%)
    Christianity [nfd] (3.0%)
    No Religion (16.4%)
    Not Stated (2.8%)
  • Ancestry
    Brazilian (58.8%)
    Italian (20.0%)
    Portuguese (15.1%)
  • Language Spoken at Home
    Portuguese (78.6%)
    English (16.1%)
    Spanish (1.4%)
    Of those who speak a language other than English at home, 90.0% speak English fluently.
  • Diaspora
    New South Wales (44.8%)
    Queensland (23.6%)
    Victoria (13.9%)
    Western Australia (12.0%)
  • Arrival to Australia
    Prior to 2001 (24.1%)
    2001-2006 (25.6%)
    2007-2011 (45.7%)
Country Flag Country Brazil