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

By Matthias Krings

Why may a Hollywood movie develop into a Nigerian video remake, a Tanzanian comedian booklet, or a Congolese track video? Matthias Krings explores the myriad methods Africans reply to the relentless onslaught of worldwide tradition. He seeks out locations 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 show the vast scope of cultural mediation that's attribute of our hyperlinked age. Krings argues that there's not an "original" or "faithful copy," yet in simple terms never-ending differences that thrive within the fertile floor of African well known culture.

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They became possessed, and he asked the gods to weep and to take their tears and put them on the Hauka. ” Then he put them all in jail. When they were in jail, one man became possessed and said, “I am a new Hauka, I’m Corsasi (The Wicked Major)” . . ” (Rouch 1978: 1008) Some of Rouch’s interlocutors believed that this jailbreak was actually successful and that the spirit mediums were able to flee to the Gold Coast. Adeline Masquelier (2001) recorded a similar version from Nigerien Babule adepts in the 1990s, who turned the historical defeat into a success.

These are the spirits that strike a chord among those who take part in the process of establishing their personality and meaning, the shaping of which occurs after a spirit’s first spontaneous manifestation (Echard 1992). In the complex negotiations that play out 40 a fr ica n a ppropr i ations during numerous séances, the new spirit, speaking through the mouth of its medium, and the nonpossessed bori adept, talking to the spirit, each has equal share in establishing the spirit’s personality, paraphernalia, and ritual.

Though the so-called Babule movement has since lost its political implications, the veneration of the foreign spirits never ceased to exist. Migrant workers from Niger took them to the colonial Gold Coast where the cult was further elaborated and its pantheon expanded. 1 I M AGE S OF PA S SION E S A N D E M BODI E D PA ST IC H E S Faced with distorted images of themselves and a ritual display of military routines that looked like parodies, French colonial officers felt ridiculed by colonial subjects who “aped” their colonial masters (Fuglestad 1975: 205).

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