classical music, the name Jean Sibelius is synonymous with nationalism. The
political climate in Finland at the time helped to create Finlandia and helped
to make it popular. Czarist Russia imposed a strict censorship policy on the
small nation in 1899. Sibelius composed Finlandia for performance at a
fund-raising event that was held by the Finnish press, the professed purpose of
which was to raise money for newspaper pension funds. In actuality, it was to
rally support of a free press. Russian authorities were so incensed by the piece
that the people of Finland were forbidden to whistle or hum it in public.