New PDF release: African Appropriations: Cultural Difference, Mimesis, and

By Matthias Krings

ISBN-10: 0253016258

ISBN-13: 9780253016256

Why may a Hollywood movie turn into a Nigerian video remake, a Tanzanian comedian ebook, or a Congolese tune video? Matthias Krings explores the myriad methods Africans reply to the relentless onslaught of worldwide tradition. He seeks out areas the place they've got tailored pervasive cultural types to their very own reasons as photograph novels, comedian books, songs, posters, or even rip-off letters. those African appropriations demonstrate the huge scope of cultural mediation that's attribute of our hyperlinked age. Krings argues that there's now not an "original" or "faithful copy," yet in basic terms unending variations that thrive within the fertile flooring of African well known culture.

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Extra info for African Appropriations: Cultural Difference, Mimesis, and Media

Sample text

Those who were praised had reciprocated with cash, thus expressing their close relationship to particular spirits as well as their acknowledgement of Idi’s praise. ” The six-gourd rattle players sitting in front of Idi gave their best and sped up the rhythm. Clad only in single cloths tied around their waists or above their chests, the nine “children of bori,” six men and three women, came up and sat down in the middle of the makeshift dance floor, an open space surrounded by more 28 t h e w ick e d m ajor 29 than 300 people.

All four copies also aim to capitalize on i n t roduction 23 their original’s fame. Like most of the copies I discuss in this book, they are commodities which have been produced and distributed by African cottage culture industries. To boost sales, and sometimes also an ideology or belief promoted by their products (the Musoma Adventist choir’s apocalypticism, for example), cultural producers may tie their own products to a foreign best seller. They hope that their products thus partake of the popularity and fame of the original, which may also translate into economic gain.

We copy the world to comprehend it through our bodies,” writes Stoller (1994: 643) in his discussion of Michael Taussig’s take on spirit possession and Cuna healing figurines. With reference to Adeline Masquelier (2001), who further developed this argument with regard to the Babule, I argue that the early Babule mediums did not only copy to comprehend but also to acquire some of the qualities of those on whom their ritual copies were modeled. The power thus acquired, however, was not used against its source to mock or resist the French colonial regime, as has been contended both by contemporary observers and some more recent interpreters (Stoller 1984), but against forms of amoral power and illegitimate authority—that is, witchcraft and local chiefs installed by the colonizers.

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African Appropriations: Cultural Difference, Mimesis, and Media by Matthias Krings


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