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Vianna Hermano The Mystery of Samba Popular Music and National Identity in Brazil 1999 In The Mystery of Samba Vianna discusses samba in a different light than other authors have He explains that although samba has become a symbol of their culture and something they are proud of that it was not always that way The author is not interested in where samba originated or about the history of its players he says I am thinking of sambas transformation into a national rhythm when it was suddenly discovered by the nation as a whole and adopted as a defining element of brasilidade or Brazilian identity Vianna 10 Around the 1920s and 1930s samba was viewed as music that was for lowlife people it was not considered appropriate music for the elite After the 1930s however great sambista players paved the way for the music to gain popularity Also carnivals were becoming very important events that displayed Brazilian nationality and these carnivals were helping to make samba popular The mystery is how did this music changed to being a source of pride for the people of Brazil Technology was a huge factor in popularizing samba and when radios began playing the music in the 1930s it started to catch on Great sambista players also caused the music to gain popularity and paved the way for the outbreak of popular music in the 1960s Samba music is the main topic that Vianna speaks of but he means for it to be symbolic of Brazilian culture Just as samba is a central mystery of Brazilian popular music race mixing is a central mystery of Brazilian social thought Vianna 12 Peter Fry gave an interesting viewpoint as to why samba music of the lower classes was chosen as something to be a national symbol Fry says that the conversion of ethnic symbols into national symbols masks a situation of racial domination and makes it especially difficult to uncover Vianna
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