Academia Brasileira de Letras

Academia Brasileira de Letras is a Brazilian literary non-profit society established at the end of the 19th century by a group of 40 writers and poets inspired by the Académie Française. The first president, Machado de Assis, declared its foundation on December 15, 1896, with the by-laws being passed on January 28, 1897. On July 20 of the same year, the academy started its operation. According to its statutes, the Brazilian Academy of Letters is charged with the care of the "national language" of Brazil and with the promotion of Brazilian literary arts; the academy is considered the foremost institution devoted to the Portuguese language in Brazil. Its prestige and technical qualification gives it paramount authority in Brazilian Portuguese though it's not a public institution and no law grants it oversight over the language; the academy's main publication in this field is the Orthographic Vocabulary of the Portuguese Language which has five editions. The Vocabulary is prepared by the academy's Commission on Lexicography.

If a word is not included in the Vocabulary, it is considered not to exist as a correct word in Brazilian Portuguese. Since its beginning and to this day, the academy is composed of 40 members, known as the "immortals"; these members are chosen from among citizens of Brazil who have published works or books with recognized literary value. The position of "immortal" is awarded for the lifetime. New members are admitted by a vote of the academy members; the chairs are numbered and each has a Patron: the Patrons are 40 great Brazilian writers that were dead when the academy was founded. Thus, each chair is associated with its current holder, her or his predecessor, the original Founder who occupied it in the first place, with a Patron; the academicians use formal gala gilded uniforms with a sword when participating in official meetings at the academy. The initiative to establish the Academy was taken by Lúcio de Mendonça and was realised in preparatory meetings that began on December 15, 1896, under the presidency of Machado de Assis.

The statuses of the Brazilian Academy of Letters and the membership of the 40 founding fathers were approved at these meetings, on January 28, 1897. On July 20 of the same year, the inaugural session was held at the Pedagogium's facility in the centre of Rio de Janeiro. Without appointed headquarters or financial resources, the solemn meetings of the academy were held at the hall of the Royal Portuguese Cabinet of Reading, at the premises of the former National Gymnasium and at the Noble Hall of the Ministry of the Interior; the joint sessions were held at the law firm of Rodrigo Octávio, the Academy's first secretary's, at Quitanda Street, 47. In 1904, the academy obtained the left wing of the Brazilian Silogeo, a governmental building that housed other cultural institutions, it remained there until moving to its own headquarters in 1923. In 1923, thanks to the initiative of its president at the time, Afrânio Peixoto and of the then-French ambassador, Raymond Conty, the French government donated the French Pavilion building to the Academy.

The building had been built for the Independence of Brazil's Centenary International Exposition by the architect Ange-Jacques Gabriel, between 1762 and 1768 and was a replica of the Petit Trianon of Versailles. These facilities have been inscribed as Brazilian Cultural heritage since November 9, 1987 by the State Institute of Cultural Heritage, of the Municipal Secretary of Culture of Rio de Janeiro. To the present day, its halls continue to host regular meetings, solemn sessions, commemorative meetings and inauguration sessions of the new academics, as well as the traditional Thursdays' tea, they are open to the public for guided tours or for special cultural programs, such as chamber music concerts, book launches, conference cycles and theatre plays. In the buildings' first floor hall stands the decorated marble floor, a French crystal chandelier, a large white porcelain vase from Sèvres and four English bas-reliefs. Inside the building, the following premises stand out: the Noble Hall, where the solemn sessions take place.

On the second floor, one can find the Library the Tea Room. The Tea Room is the academics' meeting point on Thursdays; the Library holds a collection of Manuel Bandeira. During periods like the Vargas' totalitarian dictatorship or the Brazilian military government, the academy's neutrality in choosing proper members dedicated to the literary profession was compromised with the election of politicians with few or no contributions to literature, such as ex-president and dictator Getúlio Vargas in 1943; the Academy is accused of not having defended culture expression and freedom of speech during both Varg

George Frederick Keller

George Frederick Keller was a cartoonist active in California, known as the primary illustrator of the San Francisco satirical magazine The Wasp. Born in Prussia, he emigrated to the United States and fought in the U. S. Civil War, settling in California around 1870, he apprenticed to lithographer George Baker, where his first job was lithographing colorful cigar box labels. He joined The Wasp founded by Prussian immigrants, with its first issue, debuting in August 1876; some of his work reflected the anti-Chinese and anti-immigrant sentiment of late 19th-Century San Francisco in racialized stereotypes, depicting Chinese as rat-like invaders, Irish as Neanderthals, Jews as hook-nosed moneylenders. Keller's final cartoon was published June 30, 1883, after which he left the San Francisco area "and was never heard from again". Media related to George Frederick Keller at Wikimedia Commons

Marsha Stephanie Blake

Marsha Stephanie Blake is an American actress, known for her role as Linda McCray in the Netflix miniseries When They See Us, for which she received a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie nomination. Blake immigrated to US in late 1980s with her family, she received an MFA from the graduate acting program at UCSD. Blake has played many roles on Broadway and Off-Broadway productions, include The Merchant of Venice and Gone, The Crucible, An Octoroon, Hurt Village. On television, she guest-starred in Law & Order, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Third Watch and The Good Wife. In 2015, Blake joined the cast of Netflix comedy-drama series, Orange Is the New Black playing Berdie Rogers. Along with cast, she received Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series, she had a recurring roles on Happyish, Getting On and The Blacklist. In 2019, Blake played Linda McCray in the Netflix miniseries When They See Us directed by Ava DuVernay.

In 2019, Blake was cast as Vivian Maddox in How to Get Away with Murder for the sixth and final season, in fourth season of This Is Us opposite her When They See Us co-star, Asante Blackk. Blake has appeared in a number of movies, include The Architect, Stand Clear of the Closing Doors, Nasty Baby, Person to Person, Crown Heights, The Wilde Wedding, See You Yesterday and The Laundromat, she set to appear opposite Rachel Brosnahan in the drama film I'm Your Woman. Marsha Stephanie Blake on IMDb