Study Guide Africa

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World Music
Study Guide: Sub-Saharan Africa
1. The mbira belongs to the class of instruments known as lamellaphone.
2. The Shona are a Bantu-speaking people of what country? Zimbabwe
3. Even simple mbira pieces contain many inner melodic lines, and involve an art of crea've listening as
well as playing.
4. What is meant by “interlocking” or “hocke'ng?” “Interlocking” or “hockeng” is produced by
combined pitches between two or more sound sources to create a single melody or part.
5. What does “os'nato” mean? a short musical phrase that gets repeated
6. How many di.erent countries are in Africa? 54 How many ethnolinguis'c groups? 850
Why is it be/er to think about African music in terms of ethnolinguis'c groups rather than na'ons?
Because there are mulple ethnic groups within each country, and these ethnic groups may also cross
polical borders. These borders were created by Colonial powers, not indigenous groups, therefore
spli%ng apart these groups who share a parcular style of music.
7. What is the basic lifestyle of the majority of Pygmies? Nomadic existence.
8. According to Turnbull, the BaMbu' Pygmies lead a kind of double life – how? Because they are
capable of maintaining their own tradional ways when alone in the forest while taking part in the
Bantu ritual and musical life on their visits to the villages.
9. What is meant by “nonspecialized ac'vity?”
Not having to be a specialized singer to sing at events, anyone in the band who wants to sing can sing.
10. BaMbu' women are the primary singers for the elima, a puberty ceremony.