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The Sacred Language of the Abakuá

Author: Lydia Cabrera

Publisher: Univ. Press of Mississippi

ISBN: 9781496829450

Category: History

Page: 462

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In 1988, Lydia Cabrera (1899–1991) published La lengua sagrada de los Ñáñigos, an Abakuá phrasebook that is to this day the largest work available on any African diaspora community in the Americas. In the early 1800s in Cuba, enslaved Africans from the Cross River region of southeastern Nigeria and southwestern Cameroon created Abakuá societies for protection and mutual aid. Abakuá rites reenact mythic legends of the institution’s history in Africa, using dance, chants, drumming, symbolic writing, herbs, domestic animals, and masked performers to represent African ancestors. Criminalized and scorned in the colonial era, Abakuá members were at the same time contributing to the creation of a unique Cuban culture, including rumba music, now considered a national treasure. Translated for the first time into English, Cabrera’s lexicon documents phrases vital to the creation of a specific African-derived identity in Cuba and presents the first “insider’s” view of this African heritage. This text presents thoroughly researched commentaries that link hundreds of entries to the context of mythic rites, skilled ritual performance, and the influence of Abakuá in Cuban society and popular music. Generously illustrated with photographs and drawings, the volume includes a new introduction to Cabrera’s writing as well as appendices that situate this important work in Cuba’s history. With the help of living Abakuá specialists in Cuba and the US, Ivor L. Miller and P. González Gómes-Cásseres have translated Cabrera’s Spanish into English for the first time while keeping her meanings and cultivated style intact, opening this seminal work to new audiences and propelling its legacy in African diaspora studies.
The Sacred Language of the Abakuá
Language: en
Pages: 462
Authors: Lydia Cabrera
Categories: History
Type: BOOK - Published: 2020-12-28 - Publisher: Univ. Press of Mississippi

In 1988, Lydia Cabrera (1899–1991) published La lengua sagrada de los Ñáñigos, an Abakuá phrasebook that is to this day the largest work available on any African diaspora community in the Americas. In the early 1800s in Cuba, enslaved Africans from the Cross River region of southeastern Nigeria and southwestern
Sacred Language of the Abakuá
Language: en
Pages: 608
Authors: Lydia Cabrera
Categories: History
Type: BOOK - Published: 2020-08-17 - Publisher:

The first English-language translation and extensive notation of a seminal work from the African diaspora
Voice of the Leopard
Language: en
Pages: 401
Authors: Ivor L. Miller
Categories: History
Type: BOOK - Published: 2010-01-06 - Publisher: Univ. Press of Mississippi

In Voice of the Leopard: African Secret Societies and Cuba, Ivor L. Miller shows how African migrants and their political fraternities played a formative role in the history of Cuba. During the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, no large kingdoms controlled Nigeria and Cameroon's multilingual Cross River basin. Instead, each settlement
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Pages: 218
Authors: Ivor L. Miller, Robert Farris Thompson
Categories: Art
Type: BOOK - Published: 2012 - Publisher:

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