RE-8: Choose and write on one of the following; remember to keep your essay to just one page, so it’s better to answer one question in depth instead of answering several questions.
How are Carnaval and samba related to politics and religion in Brazil? In what ways do Brazilians feel samba symbolizes and unifies their collective national identity? Explain the so-called “mystery of samba.” Explain the history of Carnival season and its role in (some parts of) the “New World.”
Briefly discuss the history of calypso, including the part played by the chantwell in kalinda, the function of Canboulay, and the historical and cultural reasons for the celebration of Carnival.
Give a brief overview of the development of the steel pan. What are its instrumental precedents dating back to Africa, and what events and changes in law created the circumstances in which the pan came to be invented? Describe the changing attitudes toward the instrument and its players over time both within Trinidad and elsewhere in the world. Is there a similarity in roles and societal acceptance that can be seen to samba in Brazil?
How are Carnaval and samba related to politics and religion in Brazil? In what ways do Brazilians feel samba symbolizes and unifies their collective national identity? Explain the so-called “mystery of samba.” What was the historical role of Estado Novo in helping Brazilians achieve (or at least strive toward) a sense of national unity? Explain the history of Carnival season and its role in (some parts of) the “New World,” including the function of the liturgical calendar of Roman Catholicism and how it played a part in New World yearly events.
Briefly describe the history of the lundu and how its most controversial move gave samba its name, as well as how it then became a point not of shame but of Brazilian pride.
In the samba competition between escola de samba groups, describe the roles of: the first couple; the rainha de bateria; and the mestre de bateria. What are some things judges are looking for in assessing each escola’s performance?
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