In this article are analyzed the social bases and institutional supports that constitute Afonso Arinos’ multiple notabilities, protagonist of political and intellectual disputes throughout the twentieth century in Brazil. The focus in one hand is on the amalgam between social notoriety (genealogic, family, professional, intellectual) and political reputation (assignments, jobs, leaderships, attributes and deeds), on the other hand, the tensions arising from inherited responsibilities, the division of family’s political work, the enrollment in various fields, the compatibility of different grammars, among others. From the biographical and autobiographical production on the character are explored: 1) the connections between the “vocation” to represent (in the various meanings of the expression) and the “art” of writing, 2) the social, ideological and political uses of the collective credit production work over a political personality; 3) the management of his own image and native theorizing about political profession present in the memories of a politician. The treatment of these dimensions reveals the outlines of a mosaic of legitimate competencies for political and intellectual consecration. Skills, knowledge and assets not necessarily reconcilable or free of traumatic processes originating from its juxtaposition or role redefinition, caused on its turn by the reconfiguration of political space and demands for readjustment of the family reproduction strategies. Similarly, by analyzing a set of position takings by and about the character, distinct multiple notability building mechanisms come to surface, from the agent and certain insertion domains that appears as product and producers of the multiple positioning enjoyed by a literate and voted elite that commanded different spheres of politics and culture simultaneously. Besides that, the possibility to understand how the amount of owned capitals and the combination between them granted to Afonso Arinos not only the authority to produce, manipulate and impose definitions on the exercise of the politician’s and “man of letters’” métier, as well as the unique accumulated potential for the management of strategic identities.
political elite; intellectuals; memoirs; biographies; political profession