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15 - A story with(out) Gauchos: folk music in the building of the Argentine nation

from Part V - Music histories of the folk and the nation

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 December 2013

Philip V. Bohlman
Affiliation:
University of Chicago
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Summary

This chapter explores the discourse on folk songs and dance, the so-called folklore musical, that appears in well-known texts. A Gaucho is the hero of the Martín Fierro, considered to be the national epic. Argentine music is often associated with the Gaucho singers and dancers of the plains, obliterating other significant Indian- or African-influenced repertories and traditions, both urban and rural. A discursive history of Argentine musical folklore necessarily includes an account of the dialectics of exclusion and inclusion that the Gaucho social type suffered over time, within texts controlled from the outside. Gauchos from Buenos Aires and elsewhere fought against the attempted British invasions in1806 and 1807. Musical novelties from the independence period are far from the radicalism that assumed the political break with Spain and the scrapping of colonial structures and hierarchies. Romanticism took Buenos Aires by storm in the early 1830s, immediately spreading to provincial cities.
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2013

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