Futbol y telenovelas

Posted by: | March 20, 2009 | Comments Off on Futbol y telenovelas

I found both of the articles for this week interesting and well written. I will admit, while I appreciate soccer to a degree, I am not a huge sports fan in general, and have never really understood the craze and obsession that goes along with it. However, after reading the article about futbol, I feel that I have finally come to understand the reality of the importance that futbol means to people. To many people in around the world, with Brazil being an epicenter to the excitment, futbol is not nearly just a game but rather is a canvas for which great cultural meaning and identity is constructed. Futbol is not mearly people kicking a ball around a field for entertainment sake, but is a site in which people come together to create a larger narrative about their lives and identities. In the example of the game in the 1950’s, for Brazilians, this does simply represent a game that was lost, but rather is highly symbolic of greater loss. It was an event that came to speak as a national narrative of the people. The staduim that was built in preperation of the game was also not mearly a fancy staduim but rather a symbol of progress and pride for the Brazillian people at a time when they were constructing their national identity for themselves and the world to witness. I think this quote sums it up well: “the 1950 game is perhpas the greatest tragedy in contemporary Brazilian history. Because it happened collectively and brought a united vision of the loss of a historic oppurtunity. Because it happened at the beginning of a decade in which Brazil was looking to assert itself as a nation with a great furutre. The result was a tireless search for explications of, and blame for, the shameful defeat.’ Reading this article made me think about how popular culture in general can come to have great signifigance when it is taken in by the people a symbol of national pride, nation and identity constructing.

As far as soap operas go…I will admit…I used to watch All My Children for many years when I was a child, namely because my Mom was into it, but I can definitly see the appeal. I mean, if you are going to watch bad television, why not just go all out for the aweful stuff rather that the mediocre stuff that tries to present itself as ‘good’ ? Soap operas and telenovelas get a lot of criticism, most of which is entirely valid, but I feel that they do play a role in bringing to light (an an entirely overly exagerated way) real issues that people face within society. In the case mentioned in the article, Por estas calles even acted as a mirror for political reality that people in Venezuela faced at the time. According to the article, “Por estas calles cannot be understood outside the context of Venezuela’s political, economic, and social situation in the last decades of the twentieth century.” Likewise, the author suggests that, “all feel affected by the world created in the telenovela, as long as it raises problems they beleive they have gone through themselves.” Telenovelas can be a medium that bring family together to view characters and stories as they experience real drama that is often, an exaggerated version of problems rooted in reality. As we discussed in class, telenovelas often bring up isses in society that are highly taboo. They flirt with these issues, but almost always tend to be intensely moral; wrong doers will not come out on top in the end. These shows raise forbidden topics in order to demonize them.


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