Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2011

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Brenda M. Romero

Second Advisor

Kwasi Ampene

Third Advisor

Jay Keister

Fourth Advisor

Tania Martuscelli

Fifth Advisor

Jeremy Smith


This dissertation is an annotated translation from Portuguese to English of the essay "Evolução Social da Música no Brasil" ("Social Evolution of Music in Brazil"), published in 1939 by Mário Raul de Morais Andrade (1893-1945). I approached the translation keeping in mind that Mário de Andrade's linguistic style has an important function and carries in itself a meaning. Andrade was in search of the flow and tone of the authentic "Brazilian" idiom, and my translation seeks to impart the literary experience of his colorful and rich writing in Portuguese. I have concluded that this may bring the reader closer to the mindset of the author.

In my annotations, I work in detail aspects that Andrade's text alluded to, and also discuss the intellectual foundations of the author. My methodology was to read the same texts that Andrade read, as well as writings by other intellectuals of the Brazilian modernist movement, of which he was a major figure. In addition, I analyzed musical pieces by composers of his generation. My conclusion is that composers who were Andrade's contemporaries radically changed their musical orientations after their encounters with him. In this sense, Andrade's essay represents today a primary source of study on the history of Brazilian music and ethnomusicology. I also found in his text a rhetoric that favors aspects that resonate with the modernist's nationalism. I argue that, when writing the essay, Andrade was not only stimulated by a modernist nationalist agenda but also prescribed it. My research has revealed that Andrade's essay figures among the earliest examples in literature on music to promote the inclusion of Afro-Brazilians as an equal part in the formation of Brazilian culture (with Native Indians and European immigrants). In this sense, Andrade's proposition of nationalism promoted a unique modernist challenge to the classical music establishment. I conclude that the essay has also played an important social and intellectual role in the formation of Brazilian music epistemology.

Dissertation directed by Associate Professor Brenda M. Romero.