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Title: COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH ON THE SONGS OF THE CITY
Authors: SARTORI, Ilaria
ABDULMUHEIMEN, Abdulnassir
Keywords: Ethiopia
Harar
Song
Poetry
Music
Issue Date: Mar-2010
Publisher: The Research Committee for African Area Studies, Kyoto University
Journal title: African study monographs. Supplementary issue.
Volume: 41
Start page: 119
End page: 131
Abstract: Harari songs, called gey fäqär, "the songs of the city, " are among the signifi cant expressions of local intangible cultural heritage. Traditional gey fäqär (usually employing a voice-percussion confi guration) are presently mostly performed at weddings: women sing in choir, led by an expert singer/poet (wāli); they may also play solo (salley) or in duo (ğāliyei, kōtankōt). Harari sung verses, fixed or improvised, are quite stratifi ed semantically; themes include religion, patriotism, friendship, love and marriage. Performance of gey fäqär combines the expression of a shared literary and musical patrimony with the ability of poetical creation and melodic variation; texts and melodies of gey fäqär, considered as a whole, are strictly interconnected with the social and ritual events they accompany. Documentation and analysis of the songs of the city thus implies an interdisciplinary approach -including linguistic, philological, literary, anthropological and musicological study- and cannot be removed from a positive relationship with the community and cooperative interactions with local and international researchers and intellectuals. While women sing symbolically for "the city, " thus expressing an important facet of Harari living culture, synergy between local community, scholars and cultural institutions may contribute to develop projects, reflections and activities towards preservation and valorisation of intangible cultural heritage.
DOI: 10.14989/108278
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2433/108278
Appears in Collections:41 (Preserving Local Knowledge in the Horn of Africa)

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