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Matto Groso and the Hoax

In this guest post Ann Kaupp, at the Smithsonian Institute, shares with you an interesting tale of the filming of a 1931 University of Pennsylvania anthropological expedition – Matto Grosso.

The Human Studies Film Archives joined the University of Pennsylvania Museum in returning to the São Lourenço Bororo people in the Brazilian village of Tadarimana DVD copies of the only surviving films from a 1931 film project considered to be one of the first synchronous sound ethnographic film projects after the advent of sound technology.  In 2010 archivists at HSFA and Penn Museum discovered that HSFA had the only known existing copy of The Hoax, one of the films made from the University of Pennsylvania sponsored 1931 Matto Grosso expedition.  In 2011 HSFA worked with the University of Pennsylvania Museum, which archives what remains of this filming project, to issue this film and the only other existing film from this project on DVD.  Recently, the Brazilian anthropologist, Dr. Sylvia Caiuby Novaes worked with members of the  São Lourenço Bororo people to translate the sound.  Click here, to view the Penn Museum’s blog post on the translation and the earlier blog post on the discovery of the film.

There is also a clip attached to the SIRIS catalog record.


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