At the Carnival

It was also during this weekend that the Copenhagen Carnival took place. And as always, it took place in the Fælledpark just across from where I live. The sound of beating drums continuing well into the night. Some of the recent years, this has annoyed me thoroughly as I was preparing for my exams, but this year I had time to go out and dance.

Still, I find that though Samba music is very vigorous and pleasant, it also has some militaristic connotations. I know that a group of samba drummers are called a Bateria – this is probably from the french “battre” meaning to beat” – but it reminded me more of an Artillery Battery. At a distance they could certainly sound like one. Again, the whole parade mentality of the Carneval seems inherently militaristic – which is a startling contrast to the sensual, carnevalesque and joyous vibes that they seek to convey.

I suppose that it is this very contrast that activists use to good effect at demonstrations. Eagerly playing and shaking the people to a frenzy of carnevalesque good humour that may difficult to set apart from threatening aggression in the eyes of the police.

By the way, these aren’t my pictures. But rather some that I found on the Carnival website. Would you believe that of all the pictures they have on there, there is only two or three with drummers on them? These samba queens are hogging all the attention…

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