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Picturing Oral Transmission in Contemporary Senegal and Mali: Music, Language and Diversity in Film

March 8, 2016 @ 7:15 PM - 9:15 PM

| Free
Bako-Dagnon-800 by 650

An interdisciplinary event featuring two award-winning documentaries directed or co-produced by SOAS scholars, aiming at exploring the unique reflections and practices that both music and multilingualism in Mali and Southern Senegal can offer.

Kanraxel – The Confluence of Agnack by Anna Sowa, Chouette Films/SOAS, University of London

There is almost no research, let alone outreach or creative material, on rural African multilingualism. This film therefore represents a unique cultural and creative resource, conveying aspects of diversity and multilingualism in Africa. It paints a portrait of diversity and multilingualism as a daily, hourly linguistic practice, drawing the audience in by telling the story of the village of Agnack Grand preparing for an unforgettable event.

The Voice of Tradition by Lucy Duran, SOAS, University of London

The voice of tradition is a documentary film examining how children acquire musical skills in one of Africa’s most celebrated oral traditions – that of Mali’s jeliw (Mande griots). It focuses on one of Mali’s most iconic singers, Bako Dagnon (1953 – 2015). In this film we hear Bako’s insightful views on song and memory, and see rare footage of young musicians learning and performing songs in the remote countryside of her native village, Golobladji.

The screening will be followed by a panel discussion on West African history and identities in music and multilingualism.

Chair: Louis Brenner (SOAS)

Discussants: Lucy Duran (SOAS), Friederike Lüpke (SOAS), Mandana Seyfeddinipur (SOAS/ELDP), Anna Sowa (Chouette Films)

This event is organised in collaboration with SOAS Centre for Film Studies, SOAS World Language Institute and the Royal African Society

Contact email: cas@soas.ac.uk

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