Mistério do samba
Samba is Brazil's "national rhythm," the foremost symbol of its culture and nationhood. To the outsider, samba and the famous pre-Lenten carnival of which it is the centerpiece seem to showcase the country's African heritage. Within Brazil, however, samba symbolizes the racial and cultural mixture that, since the 1930s, most Brazilians have come to believe defines their unique national identity.
But how did Brazil become "the Kingdom of Samba" only a few decades after abolishing slavery in 1888? Typically, samba is represented as having changed spontaneously, mysteriously, from a "repressed" music of the marginal and impoverished to a national symbol cherished by all Brazilians. Here, however, Hermano Vianna shows that the nationalization of samba actually rested on a long history of relations between different social groups--poor and rich, weak and powerful--often working at cross-purposes to one another.
A fascinating exploration of the "invention of tradition," "The Mystery of Samba" is an excellent introduction to Brazil's ongoing conversation on race, popular culture, and national identity.
What people are saying - Write a review
Review: Mystery of SambaUser Review - Naeem - Goodreads
A beautiful book: the forest and the trees of samba. I had planned only to skim it. I was looking for a quick description of samba. But when I entered I lost track of my original purpose. If you are ... Read full review
Review: Mystery of SambaUser Review - Tako - Goodreads
A good read for anyone interested in the historical background of Brazil and the roots of samba as it transformed into what we see/hear today as essentially Brazilian. Read full review
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