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Power, Marginality and African Oral Literature - Graham Furniss

Power, Marginality and African Oral Literature

By: Graham Furniss (Editor), Liz Gunner (Editor)

Hardcover Published: 29th September 1995
ISBN: 9780521480611
Number Of Pages: 300

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African oral literature, like other forms of popular culture, is not merely folksy, domestic entertainment but a domain in which individuals in a variety of social roles are free to comment on power relations in society. It can also be a significant agent of change capable of directing, provoking, preventing, overturning and recasting social reality. This collection examines the way in which oral texts both reflect and affect contemporary social and political life in Africa. It addresses questions of power, gender, the dynamics of language use, the representation of social structures and the relation between culture and the state. The contributors are linguists, anthropologists, folklorists, ethnomusicologists and historians, who present fresh material and ideas to paint a lively picture of current real-life situations. The book is an important contribution to the study of African culture and literature, and to the anthropological study of oral literature in particular.

Introduction: power, marginality and oral literature
Orality and the Power of the State
Oral art and contemporary cultural nationalism
The letter and the law: the politics of orality and literacy in the chiefdoms of the northern Transvaal
A king is not above insult: the politics of good governance in Nzema avudwene festival songs
Representing Power Relations
Igbo enwe eze: monarchical power versus democratic values in Igbo oral narratives
Tales and ideology: the revolt of sons in Bambara-Malinke tales
Images of the powerful in Lyela folktales
Oral Forms and the Dynamics of Power
Power, marginality and Somali oral poetry: case studies in the dynamics of tradition
The function of oral art for the regulation of social power in Dyula society
The power of words and the relation between Hausa genres
Endorsing or Subverting the Paradigms: Women and Oral Forms
Sexuality and socialisation in Shona praises and lyrics
Nontsizi Mgqwetho: stranger in town
Clashes of interest: gender, status and power in Zulu praise poetry
Jelimusow: the superwoman of Malian music
Mediators and Communicative Strategies
Power and the circuit of formal talk
Praise splits the subject of speech: constructions of kingship in the Manden and Borgu
Beyond the communal warmth: the poet as loner in Ewe oral tradition
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521480611
ISBN-10: 0521480612
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 300
Published: 29th September 1995
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.8 x 15.2  x 2.1
Weight (kg): 0.61