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Dried Millet Breaking: Time, Words, and Song in the Woi Epic of the Kpelle

Stone, Ruth M.

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ISBN 10: 0253318181 / ISBN 13: 9780253318183
Published by Bloomington and London: Indiana University Press, 1988, Bloomington and London, 1988
Condition: Fine Hardcover
From Lord Randall Bookshop (Marshfield, MA, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Cloth. Fine/No Jacket. 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Inscribed by the author, 150 pages include index, references, glossary. Bookseller Inventory # 001462

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Dried Millet Breaking: Time, Words, and Song...

Publisher: Bloomington and London: Indiana University Press, 1988, Bloomington and London

Publication Date: 1988

Binding: Cloth

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: No Jacket

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

About this title


Dried millet breaking," sung by the bard at the end of one episode of this Woi epic of the Kpelle people of Liberia, represents a formula that breaks the flow of events and introduces the epic's complex temporal scaffolding. Examining the singing, narration, dramatic performance, instrumental accompaniment, and timing of the Woi epic, Ruth M. Stone reveals that the Kpelle show time flux through changing timbres, motion, and spatial metaphors in ways fundamentally different from those of much Western art music. In this illuminating study Stone moves beyond typical genre studies of African music to shed light on broader questions of music's relationship to areas of culture often ignored.


"Dried Millet Breaking is a commendable piece of work that should be of interest to a range of scholars in anthropology and other disciplines." - American Anthropologist "Among its many virtues, this book contains excellent examples of the special qualities of African perceptions of both the temporal and spiritual worlds." - International Journal of African Historical Studies " ... a sound anthropological inquiry ... a work that reveals alternative ways than our own of comprehending and expressing the meaning of time." - Time's News "Professor Stone's intelligent and provocative discussions of time, language, history, and African literary traditions will prove important to a broader understanding of music's role in oral literature... a major contribution to the field of ethnomusicology." - Lester P. Monts

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