In the Time of Cannibals
The Word Music of South Africa's Basotho Migrants
Coplan discusses every aspect of the Basotho musical literature, taking into account historical conditions, political dynamics, and social forces as well as the styles, artistry, and occasions of performance. He engages the postmodern challenge to decolonize our representation of the ethnographic subject and demonstrates how performance formulates local knowledge and communicates its shared understandings.
Complete with transcriptions of full male and female performances, this book develops a theoretical and methodological framework crucial to anyone seeking to understand the relationship between orality and literacy in the context of performance. This work is an important contribution to South African studies, to ethnomusicology and anthropology, and to performance studies in general.
Ch. 1: "Hyenas Do Not Sleep Together": The Interpretation of Basotho Migrants' Auriture
Ch. 2: "The Mouth of a Commoner Is Not Listened To": Power, Performance, and History
Ch. 3: "Greetings, Child of God!": Generations of Travelers and Their Songs
Ch. 4: "An Initiation Secret Is Not Told at Home": The Making of a Country Traveler
Ch. 5: "These Mine Compounds, I Have Long Worked Them": Auriture and Migrants' Labors
Ch. 6: "I'd Rather Die in the Whiteman's Land": The Traveling Women of Eloquence
Ch. 7: "My Heart Fights with My Understanding": Bar Women's Auriture and Basotho Popular Culture
Ch. 8: "Eloquence Is Not Stuck on Like a Feather": Sesotho Aural Composition and Aesthetics
Ch. 9: "Laughter Is Greater than Death": Migrants' Songs and the Meaning of Sesotho