The beat of the drums resonates down the streets of Rio every year for three weeks. Known as one of the greatest parties on the planet, millions of people dance and celebrate to Brazilian music. By definition, it is a carnal holiday with a lack of real authority. Thieves are so common in the crowds that people have taken to buying cheap phones to take out to the street parties in case they get robbed.
Rio’s naked carnival kicks off with dancers in eye-popping outfits from and covered in body paint
Hyper sexual Carnival atmosphere has a dark side for Rio’s women – Trem do Samba
The two-night extravaganza began in the Sambodromo, where 72, spectators sat in sweltering heat, with many thousands more milling around outside selling drinks, putting on costumes or simply soaking up the atmosphere. Three of the samba schools taking openly critical stands against the political and corruption crisis that has engulfed Latin America's biggest country over the last four years. Even by Brazil's deteriorating standards, Rio de Janeiro is in particularly deep financial trouble, while crime in many areas is out of control. Two children were among the dead in shootings last week and a policeman was reported Sunday to have been shot dead in a suburb - the 16th officer killed already this year. So although 17, police have been deployed for the carnival, large parts of Rio, like Rocinha or City of God, are virtual no-go zones for both police and tourists. Locals in those areas, dubbed favelas, have to survive in the crossfire of drug gangs and the security forces.
Hyper sexual Carnival atmosphere has a dark side for Rio’s women
The US photographer Susan Meiselas first began shooting women who took their clothes off for a living in , when she was in her mids. Meiselas was fascinated. Over the course of three summers, she haunted the fairgrounds, befriending dancers and sneaking backstage to capture what their lives were really like. She also recorded hundreds of hours of interviews.
Whether it be from the hot sun, large crowd, or my uncool effervescence, he is far too surly for this festive atmosphere. So, I buy him a single-serve Sutter Home from the minimart and shove it in his hand. An hour or so later, I find him in a markedly better mood.