Women's Songs from West Africa

Women's Songs from West Africa

Edited by Thomas A Hale and Aissata G Sidikou
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 12/02/2013
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 978-0-253-01017-9
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Exploring the origins, organization, subject matter, and performance contexts of singers and singing, Women's Songs from West Africa expands our understanding of the world of women in West Africa and their complex and subtle roles as verbal artists. Covering Côte d'Ivoire, the Gambia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, and beyond, the essays attest to the importance of women’s contributions to the most widespread form of verbal art in Africa.

Author Bio

Thomas A. Hale is Liberal Arts Professor of African, French, and Comparative Literature at Pennsylvania State University. He is author of Griots and Griottes (IUP, 2007) and editor (with Aissata G. Sidikou) of Women's Voices from West Africa: An Anthology of Songs from the Sahel (IUP, 2012).

Aissata G. Sidikou is Assistant Professor of French at the United States Naval Academy. She is author of Recreating Words, Reshaping Worlds: The Verbal Art of Women from Niger, Mali, and Senegal.


“These essays affirm the importance of women performers and the importance of the songs in articulating women's issues in the Sahel region of Africa today.”
 — Mildred Mortimer, University of Colorado, Boulder

“This book is a valuable source of information for Africanists interested in the role played by women in the continuity of tradition in African culture. . . . Recommended.”
 — Choice

Women's Songs from West Africa, is a valuable resource for scholars interested in West African music, and represents a remarkable achievement.”
 — Ethnomusicology Review

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Table of Contents

Women’s Songs and Singing in West Africa: New Perspectives
Thomas A. Hale and Aissata G. Sidikou

1. Wolof Women Break the Taboo of Sex through Songs
Marame Gueye
2. Jola Kanyalen Songs from the Casamance, Sengeal: From ‘Tradition’ to Globalization Kirsten Langeveld
3. Azna Deities in the Songs of Taguimba Bouzou: A Window on the Visible and Invisible
Boubé Namaïwa
4. Initiation and Funeral Songs from the Guro of Côte d'Ivoire
Ariane Deluz
5. Praises Performances by Jalimusolu in The Gambia
Marloes Janson
6. Music about Feminine Modernity in the Sahara
Aline Tauzin
7. Songs by Wolof Women
Luciana Penna-Diaw
8. A Heroic Performance by Siramori Diabate of Mali
Brahima Camara and Jan Jansen
9. Women’s Tattooing Songs from Kajoor, Senegal
George Joseph
10. Drummed Poems by Songhay-Zarma Women of Niger
Fatima Mounkaïla
11. Space, Language, and Identity in the Palm Tree
Aissata G. Sidikou
12. Bambara Women’s Songs in Southern Mali
Bah Diakité
13. Patriarchy in Songs and Poetry by Zarma Women
Aissata Niandou
14. Muslim Hausa Women’s Songs
Beverly B. Mack
15. Lamentation and Politics in the Sahelian Song
Thomas A. Hale
16. Transformations in Tuareg Tende Singing: Women’s Voices and Local Feminisms
Susan J. Rasmussen
17. Income Strategies of a Jelimuso in Mali and France
Nienke Muurling

List of Contributors

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