Market Logic as an Efficiency Measure of the Organization of Olinda’s Carnival

Abstract Olinda’s Carnival (Mardi Gras) has become a mega-event in the last decades, proving to be an increasingly complex organization in how market logic is inserted and intensified. This diffusion of market logic in several instances of public life is a phenomenon closely associated with the premises of neoliberalism. In this sense, an important contribution is the analysis of the governmental rationality undertaken by Michel Foucault, inasmuch as his work goes back to the emergence of liberal thought and the rationality underlying it. Present study investigates how market logic is adopted in Olinda’s Carnival, based on discourse analysis as systematized by Foucault. Therefore, we analyzed the journalistic coverage of the 1986, 1996, 2006 and 2016 carnivals made by the two main Pernambuco newspapers. The 10-year gap between events was intended to enable the apprehension of substantial changes over the three decades. Our findings point to a quest for governmental efficiency on the part of the municipality, based on the homo economicus model and adopting political technologies aimed at mediating interests between market and society.