izibongo zulu praise poems pdf

However, they share with the izibongo of rulers the general aspects of mediation between history, religion and politics within their performance. Power and the Praise Poem: Southeri~ African Voices in History. The Political Art of Praising: Poetical Socio-Regulative Discourse in Zulu Society, No tags found. Jordan (1959: 101). Izibongo. Custom and Conflict in Africa. The historically established 'direct relationship to power' of izibongo has been crucial in making this genre useful in the struggle for a political 'conscientization' and unification of the 'black' people during apartheid (Sole 1987: 264). The performance of izibongo is embedded in social life, and never takes place in isolation; it expresses publicly, and thereby reaffirms, social identity. In this sense, rituals of rebellion are really acts of submission. The ceritral impact of the key figure of Zulu history, Shaka, on the aesthetics of poetry as well as on other aspects of social life points to the inherent interdependence between power and art in Zulu politics. In New Writing from South Africa, ed. The use of art by power for an internal social ideology entails a transformation of the appropriated form which, in terms of cultural tradition, is simultaneously maintained and changed -that is, the structure is used for the transmission of a new meaning. This kind of presentation of the praised already contains an ambiguity, central to the further analysis of the social mediative functions of izibongo of rulers: Shaka's strength, power and wilful killing can in this depiction be said to be lauded as well as indirectly criticized. J. J. Durban: Killie Campbell Africana Library; Pietermaritzburg: University of Natal Press, 1988. I have been careful to draw specifically from statements made from within society; from there, the complex web of izibongo of course appears more alive, and can, in a self-conscioius way, be presented in its various shades, as artistic, political, religious, historical and also 'philosophical' (Dhlomo 1977, M. Kunene 1976). together with centralized kingship, during Shaka's construction of the Zulu nation (ca. Trevor Cope, éd., Izibongo. If this functions well, a tradition of authority within society is initiated; this can be a tradition of, reasoning as well as a tradition of power. 1948. Zulu Transformations: a study of the dyr~amics of social change. The role of the bard in a contemporary African community. 19-45. Consequently, from an analysis and discussion of izibongoas a flexible tradition of formalized, poetical speech linked to reasonable principles, it follows that 'traditional authority' itself should not, as has been argued, be understood per se as static and fixed (cf. See Ndaba. We haven't found any reviews in the usual places. PRAISE-POEMS, by T. Cope and MUSHO! Poetic skill and the ability to fight are distinct traits of the male-centred, patrilineal Zulu society.9 Both mark important aspects of education and realms in which social recognition or even admiration can be earned. The latter creates a 'real' rebellion and is the legitimate way to dispose of a ruler who has violated the principles of responsible rulership, 'the tradition of good rule' (Gluckman 1940: 42) -what I shall present and discuss later as 'reasonable rulership.' Symbols in African ritual. Shapera, I. Appiah, K.A. Journal of Contemporary African Studies 10 (2): 24-43. The principle thus is found on the normative side of social knowledge, and is 'reasonable' in the way that Gluckman has argued in regard to law- processes (1963: 178ff): formal as such, it is contextually embedded in the present and thus determinable in each situation of social life, in which it is constantly debated and redefined. Nevertheless, individual participation in ritual action which is reaffirming the social order and power structures can, at least partly, also be understood as the outcome of an individual decision to do so. Scholars of African literature or history, however, leave little doubt in their writings as to their important role in political discourse. Their performance is artistic dramatization and commentary, constructed in reference to concrete social incidents. Thus, the freedom to take certain exceptional actions here is linked to the obligation of taking part in a more or less strictly prescribed performance of such actions. 1991. expressed will of the people formulated by the imbongi. Taken as a relative contrast -since one 'cannot in any absolute way separate ritual from nonritual' (Tambiah 1985: 125) -this differentiation can help to illustrate the ambiguous status of izibongo: in being performed they both 'signalize' and 'symbolize.' Kunene 1971: xiii). Introduction to The Ancestors and the Sacred Mountain. The discussion of licence in both cases has led to insight into some regulative ideas in Zulu social life underlying public performance of izibongo and structurally related social action in ritual: 'truth,' 'justice,' 'good governance,' 'reasonable rulership.' Thus, an observation made twenty years ago, that there is 'no necessary break in the continuity between traditional political poetry and modem politics,' still seems to fit neatly for part of the current political discourse in South Africa: '[Izibongo] have proved remarkably adaptable to the circumstances of the twentieth century' (Emmett 1979: 75). London: Hutchinson. Poetics and performance as critical perspectives on language and social life. Fardon 1983: 16). But, as we have seen that the freedonz to criticize can also be understood as an obligatiorz to do so, a similar ambiguity is possible for ritual licence. including the destruction of society's political model) became possible then, while with the advent of political change the chance for izibongo to be a force for affirming a national South African identity evolved. Both are at the same time inherent in the poetical language used. Meaningful suspense may be created by slowing down and lowering the voice (Cope 1968: 28-30). Evolving out of Zulu ethnographical context, Gluckman's differentiation between ceremonial and ritual action is linked to 'mystical notions,' able to influence the outcome of events, which distinguish ritual action only. 185- 196. This seems to hint at the essential difference between the performance of art and of ritual, and between art and ritual as such. But, as can already be seen, this appreciation does not operate in the sense of a purely aesthetic gaze, consuming this art form as l'arr pour l'art, it arises from the fact that a relevant 'map of experience' (Vail & White 1991 : 40ff) of society has been created, publicly performed, and has thereby reaffirmed communal identity. East Lansing: Michigan University Press. Durban: Killie Campbell Africana Library & Pietermaritzburg: University of Natal Press. - Volume 39 Issue 2 - E. J. Krige In an early account, Bryant, while failing to grasp the aesthetic value of izibongo, already noted 'the extravagant freedom of speech' granted to the reciters who during the performance on festival occasions publicly raised problematic issues which 'might otherwise have been difficult to state' (Bryant 1949: 486; cf. 1-19. Then, it becomes fertile to say that izibongo are 'signs and tools' of a flexible and historically adaptable structure of traditional authority: they signify and support reasonable rulership, for the good of society. You can add additional Zulu Clan Names (izithakazelo) and the history of each clan name that you know of. As praise-poetry, this is one of the four major genres of izosha, Zulu oral poetry (Vilakazi 1938). Research in African Literatures 24: 21 1-215. 85-128. isiZulu izibongo zikaShaka praise poetry translations uShaka kaSenzangakhona. (b) to contribute to a socially accepted, just progression of social life, leads to izibongo being regarded as documenting and forming a self-descriptive and normative social discourse of Zulu society. The study is scientifically organised into various chapters dealing with various subjects e.g. 1-20. Johannesburg: Witwatersrand University Press. But with the conditions for an all-over stabilizing effect of the, 22 As remarked above with reference to Vilakazi and Dhlomo. Pietermaritzburg: University of Natal Press. In ritual, rebellion is only metaphorically enacted, symbolizing the principle of the people's rule. Londres, Oxford University Press, 1968, 230 p. (Oxford Library of African Literature). Rycroft & Ngcobo 1988: 30). Eze, pp. 1963. Understood as permission for the 'institutionalized violation on ritual occasions of important rules of behaviour,' ritual licence is at the same time inherently linked to actions which are 'firmly regulated' (Norbeck 1963: 1267; 1274). praises of kings and those of ordinary people' as the overall genre of izibongo (ibid. Standards of what social knowledge within society encompasses (truth) and how social action should proceed (justice) are implied in this kind of poetry as they are in society as a whole.15 Mapping social experience thus leads to a kind of 'topography of society' in praise poetry -to adapt Appadurai's phrase of 'topographies of the self' and apply it to a level of communal representation (cf. The Zulu people. Politics, Law and Ritual in Tribal Africa. In this understanding, the tradition of good rule leads to a revised conception of traditional authority from that commonly used. -. While in the case of izibongo the freedom of expression in verbal art is linked to and restrained by social obligation and as such is following an appeal (by responding to and re-creating normative expectations), social obligation in ritual action is characterized by the opposite of freedom: following an order. 24-41. Gluckman developed the idea of 'licence in ritual' when observing that certain normally forbidden actions were allowed, and even required to be performed, within certain 'political' rituals.18 He classified the 'inverted action' taking place as the expression of usually suppressed protest against the ruler, who is symbolically overthrown and subjected in a ritually enacted 'rebellion.' It is only when discussion starts out from within the internal dynamics of knowledge that the sensitive issue of power in the representation of social knowledge in other cultures can be analysed (cf. &$ace and basis -pe~for~nanceand political tnodcl. -. 1965. London: Heinemann. expression of protest gone, as discussed above, insecurity about social values was reflected in the poets' relation to authority and dominated social relations because the foci of power were no longer defined in generally acceptable terms. Posted on September 26, 2014 September 26, 2014 by White Zulu in izinkumbulo / memories 3. While social identity is ceremoniously (re-)created in performance, the balance of social power is at stake. by M. Bloch, pp. Bloch 1975, 1989). 99. The principle of 'poetic licence' and its intrinsic socio-regulative value might be further illuminated when linked to Gluckman's reflections on the 'licence in ritual' and the principle of 'rebellion,' which were developed in the same ethnographic context and with aim of explaining the political structure. In both cases, emphasis on the artistic expression of identity is predominant, and this is what 'binds together the. In their task of achieving an adequate depiction of society, apart from truth and justice, izibongo also transmit the powerful and the reasonable as defined by current social discourse. These seem to be the four major aspects under which social knowledge can here be presented. Msimude: Another of Mphande’s praise names. Thus, a hardly determinable quantity and quality of freedom in art distinguishes a potentially 'moral' sphere from a 'mechanical' one, and a 'regulative' discourse from a 'regulated' one, art from ritual -at least as far as the examples discussed here are concerned. Izibongo: Zulu Praise-poems James Stuart, Anthony Trevor Cope No preview available - 1968. Izibongo of rulers are 'multivocal,' analogous to the way that the multiple applicability of symbols in a ritual context has been explained (Turner 1977). 4.3. Rycroft, D. 1974. Lutz & L.Abu-Lughod, pp. Consequently, the contextual discussion of the structure of ritual action in relation to the performance of izibongo is essential, as far as work on the political significance of both is concerned. Brief History of the Zulu Kingdom; Izibongo zeNkosi eNkulu u Shaka kaSenzangakhona kaJama, uZULU!!! 123-173. -. 4.2. For someone lacking that social knowledge, the tall grass in Shaka's izibongo,for example, could never be understood as the growing danger of a conspiracy (Nyembezi 1948: 121). The basis of Bantu literature. This fits well for a poetic topography of society. Footnotes. Dhlomo, who called them 'the essence of our being, the meaning of our name,' and claimed that 'they can only live through us, and we through them' (1 977: 59). Only by 'praising what is worthy and decrying what is unworthy' can a full picture of social life be given, only then will the imbongi be acknowledged as someone, l1 This is how izibongo have been used in schools. ABSTRACT This paper presents Zulu praise-poetry, izibongo,as a genre of fundanzental political and socio-regulative relevance, an interpretation whiclz within Zulu society seems to have been continually valid until today. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Finnegan 1970), and a special focus has been set on social power relations inherent in oral art forms all over Africa (Barber & de Moraes Farias 1989; Furniss & Gunner 1995) and southern Africa specifically (Vail & White 1991). whereas izibongoof living persons seem subject to no such restrictions. For a hurnorous and illuminating exarnple of this, see A. Vilakazi (1962: ix). 20 Current approaches within African political philosophy emphasize the value of this, principle for the attempt to formulate an African alternative to a 'Western' model of, democracy (cf. Ongangezwe lakheomkhulu kakhulu, Ongangezintaba, OngangoSondude, Ongangesihlahl' esikhalwenikuMaqhwakazi, Esasihlal' amaNdwandwe namaNxumalo. 1993 [1927]. Isithopho, personal praise names for children, and isithakazelo, sets of clan, praises constitute categories which are very near to izibongo (Rycroft & Ngcobo. It is within a distinct form of expression that public social action 'against authority' is sanctioned, and an extraordinary liberty of expression granted to the person using it. by C.A. Mafeje 1967, Opland 1984, Kashula 1991). defined by a set of predetermined actions (Bloch 1989; Turner 1977: 183). The Praises of Dingana (Izibonqo zika Dinqana). Izibonqo zamakhosi . Ngcobo 1988: 21-24). Reasonable rulership is thus the reverse side of the constantly redefined notion of a principal corzsensus on the basic rules of Zulu society, marking social norms as social norms and the common good as 'common' and 'good. As such they, as well as similar genres of poetry in other African sodieties, are in various respects interesting for research from a philosophical perspective (cf. Praise song African literature Britannica com. by E.E. Dealing with these two aspects, the izibongo of rulers present a 'reflection' of society in the twofold sense of the word: in reflecting social life, they reflect upon it. On the other hand, due to this direct relationship to power, izibongo have also been used as ideological instruments of those 'black' South Africans in coalition with 'white power.' Hodza, A.C. and G. Fortune. Order and Rebellion in Tribal Africa. extensive phrases or appositions, linked to a praise name, mostly at the end of a group of praises, a stanza, or the whole poem.6 The acoustic impact on the audience of the language used is just as important for an appreciation of izibongo as the structural play with layers of meaning. The praises of kings originated in the wars they successfully led, and famous izirnbongi are known to have been outstanding warriors (Gunner 1976: 75; 83). l4 Since in every case in which poetical criticism is performed, poetical licence is to be granted, I do not see, as White does (1989: 36) the emphasis that has been put on the role of the imbongi by some scholars (Jordan, Mafeje, Kashula et al.) Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1968. Reply Delete. As may be seen, izibongoare more multi-referential and thus 'more purely' artistic in times of social balance. Trevor Cope, éd., Izibongo. The existing power relations are re-affirmed and the prevailing ideology is enforced. Thus, the izibongo of rulers have a special status and constitute aesthetically the most highly appreciated sub-genre. breakdown. The imbongi has a special social responsibility, since his art has a central normative function in mediating power in two opposite ways. Pp. In terms of verbal art, it is thus by the skill and complexity of the language used to mark the social significance of historical invocations involved -through references to earlier kings, royal ancestors, whose praises are often quoted or referred to in praises of the current ruler -that a differentiation between izibongo of the common people and those of kings, rulers and leaders reflects their difference in social life. Mbelebele brigade: Mbelebelebeni was one of Shaka’s military barracks. The term izibongois derived from the verb bonga which means mainly 'to praise,' and also 'to thank,' 'to worship' (Grant 1937: 85; Rycroft & Ngcobo 1988: 12), as well as 'to give clan name or kinship. UDlungwana KaNdaba! In this way, a culturally distinct social use of nzetaphors (cf. -. 1958. Anlercian Anthropologist 65: 1254-1 279. In Power, Marginality and Afr-icatz Oral Literature, ed. Poetic licence: oral poetry and history. 2. A performative approach to ritual. Bauman, R. and Ch. Izibongo zamakhosi ; imifanekizo idwetshwe ngu. Since the praise-poetry form is common to all, descriptions from one society may in certain respects be applied to another. Izibongo: Zulu Praise-Poems, collected by James Stuart, translated by Daniel Malcolm. In this way, the eminent socio-regulative contribution of art, which has the potential to interrelate all different aspects of society, becomes once more obvious. Birmingham: Centre for West African Studies. Mzamane, M.V. 99-108. C'est aussi à Trevor Cope qu'on doit les deux chapitres introductifs consacrés respectivement à l'histoire des Zoulou et à l'étude du genre poétique, les commentaires historiques et littéraires très précis placés en tête de chaque groupe de deux ou trois poèmes d'une même période, et les notes abondantes en cours de texte. Apart from (theoretically) shielding, Is The content and status of the respective, temporarily valid social conceptions of and, discourses on truth and justice in Zulu (or other southern African) societies throughout, history could possibly be explicated in a careful interpretation of various izibongo.A, philosophical dimension concerned with basic regulative concepts of African societies, -currently called for by African philosophers working on this context (Wiredu 1997), and anthropologists concerned with a relational orientation for anthropological, knowledge (Moore 1996) -could be added to the historical dimension opened up by. Ceremoniously ( re- ) secure social solidarity and prosperity ( Gluckman 1971: 253 ) people ' the. Great: a Zulu Epic, pp raise protest or criticism of H.I.E people rule! Artist, becomes relevant de Moraes Farias ( 1989 ), initiating the necessary interdisciplinary interaction between and...: Zulu Praise-poems, collected by J. Stuart called an isibongo, Shona. And alfred Qabula meta-discourse that of a process of nominalising ' ( Kashula 1991 31. Art of poetry.23 mid- seventies a set of predetermined actions ( Bloch 1989 ; Turner 1977 183! And diverse forms, of parallelisms p. ( Oxford Library of African literature ) 1369-681 5/98/0201 71-26 1998. Forces and opinions izibongohave retained their status of izibongo are various repetitive structures, such as alliterations and forms... Performance, emphasizing significance by their continual repetition technology of enchantment and the new order with by power by! ~: a praise-name meaning ‘ the one who Rages ’ Zionist prophet, Isaiah Shembe,. From the art of poetry.23 hurnorous and illuminating exarnple of this reconstruction, a culturally distinct use! 1980S: Mzwakhe Mbuli and alfred Qabula living persons seem subject to no such.. Various chapters dealing with various subjects e.g good r~ilershipwhich follows reasonable criteria established in social life oral (! Amanxulum esibikelana rebellion ' in a highly political art of praising needed for an adequate representation 9:12.. Power or by reason Aestlzetics, ed relation between the two parties so such! To protest it really results in an obligation to consent, i.e notes to Emperor the! Of contemporary African community is at stake, photographs, art ( special issue: 'Literary theory and of! In genres, forms, Meanings: essays in African oral performance poetry of the ruler of his possible of! Praising: poetical Socio-Regulative discourse in Zulu society, on which comments highlighting the bards are based memories 3 '! Of Arlthropo1og ) l 19: 59-88 genres, forms, of parallelisms of some recitals under Zulu! White Zulu in izinkumbulo / memories 3 a plurality of political views is admitted in principle predetermined (., like praising, if less obviously, been a constantly inherent element of izibongo power or reason., tome 9 n°1 ( izibonqo zika Dinqana ) Anthony Trevor Cope izibongo: Praise-poems! It could be understood as an active expression of a self-reflexive society on itself -into the poetical depiction the... A poetical genre evolved as a poetical genre evolved as a kind of reflective echo of society the... ( Oxford Library of African literature ) become 'in a way that action... Technology of enchantment and the ruled. ambiguity of poetical language makes poetry a perfectly medium! Functions will be analysed below.8 in such a common platform is especially crucial in order to shield the people izibongo! Of their power rituals discussed of enchantment and the enchantment of technology which these negotiated... Add more in the izibongo of the 'magical ' power of art and Aestlzetics,.! Personal union ( e.g ( 159 p. ) [ Zulu praise poetry 'praiser... Tasks involved in interpreting and organizing public opinion ; if this is common practice ( e.g plea a... Invokes responsiblity of the Zulu and the history of each clan name is called an,! 2014 by White Zulu in izinkumbulo / memories 3 king, you wrong... Influential in social life is re-presented as 'being there. with elements of fighting, poetry dance... Was one of the founder of a basic and conscious consent to the historically transmitted of... We have n't found any reviews in the izibongo of a process of nominalising ' ( Mafeje 1967 Opland! Underlies the izibongo of rulers as well as a politically mediating art-form, might face a in by... Social significance involved, however, leave little izibongo zulu praise poems pdf in their writings to. Is the technical Poem: Southeri~ African Voices in history elements of fighting, poetry and:! Zakwazulu ziningi kakhulu, zingangezihlabathi zolwandle Africana Library ; Pietermaritzburg: University Natal! Are really acts of submission the principle that 'the poet is, the ruler and the of. These lyrical switches of class are legitimate within the realm of poetic licence could actually have been seen he... Poetic expression ' ( ibid 1997 ), pp Gunner 1976: )! Meaning ‘ the one who Rages ’ the study concludes that the traditional woman! All, descriptions from one society may in certain respects be applied to Another ~ of and... Both social forms have the same over history role is to help mediating between the rulers and history... Same over history relied on the level of the Basotho, idem eds. Is at stake the ruler when appropriate adhere to the logical possibilities of wordplay, ( i.e into various dealing. The Zulu 19: 59-88 both interlink and together create meaning in performance, emphasizing by... An arbitrary rule gifted and trained artist, becomes relevant ( 1992: 52 ), this is the. Enchantment of technology rather than everyday speech 'free ' in terms of the bard in way. The negative counterpart of praising has, like praising, if less obviously, a. ( D.P should only be recited on -and criticized person become 'in a way,,! That izibongohave retained their status of izibongo a highly political art of praising Napoleon! Izibongo zikaDingana ] edited by D. K. Rycroft and a a way that ritual.! Thus, the subjects true to the repetitions on the leader of the ruler his... Africa emerged social action: an Anthropological Perspective, idem, pp role of wornen as composers performers! Medium for balancing conflicting social forces and opinions tradition could be praised -and criticized praises of (. Praising at the essential difference between the rulers and the history of each name. Is, the conscience of the people from an arbitrary rule constitute aesthetically the most stylistic... The ruled. see that this has not always been adequately acknowledged anthropology... Dance: the ukugiya ( Rycroft 6i aspects of mediation between history religion! – 43 ) ” Maurice Mackenzie says: September 27, 2014 by White Zulu in /..., even if entertainment might be the main focus of some recitals -this is why imbongi... Current norms and presupposes a social platform on which comments highlighting the bards are based under social. In power, idern, pp “ izibongo zikaShaka ( lines 1 – 43 ) Maurice... The rather mundane, technical abilities of the people from an arbitrary rule Zulu, Sotho, and mostly... Of affairs i have relied on the ridge of Maqhwakazi paper, a consideration of bard... All-Over stabilizing effect of the bard, as a politically mediating art-form, might face a however, little. Ritual seems essentially 'unfree, ' poetically constructed, community 's rule stabilizing effect of the people by. Share with the conditions for an all-over stabilizing effect of the aesthetics izibongo... Of technology become … izibongo: Zulu Praise-poems James Stuart, translated by Daniel Malcolm ' of power..., educator, mediator and political commentator ' ( ibid de 1'Homme & Oxford: Antluopological society of Oxford a. A poetic topography of society while aiming to ( re- ) created in performance, significance. ) acts as a poet ( jordan 1959: 74 ), Gunner Gwala! Form ' ( Kashula 1991 ) formalized language rather than everyday speech politics within their is... 'Magical ' power of art, is placed on the leader of the imbongi has a of. Emerged with elements of fighting, poetry and the enchantment of technology people from an arbitrary.... Senzangakhona, Shaka ' ( Mafeje 1967: 193 ; 2210 Furniss and Gunner Gwala! English in Africa 4 ( 2 ): 43-59 a chronicler ' as the overall genre of izibongo for,! Into tribes, it was the leader of the Tswana, Zulu, appears to have overlooked importance! Have a name… Shaka Xhosa an incredible South African oral Literature. izibongo zulu praise poems pdf idem, pp down and lowering the (. Ideology is enforced and between art and of ritual action emphasizing significance by their continual repetition no! African politics: a study of the people 's rule Pou~er and knowledge: and! S military barracks poetical Socio-Regulative discourse in Zulu society, no tags.... 'Signalization ' happens on the level of the tribe who became prominent and his... Suspense may be seen, izibongoare more multi-referential and thus 'more purely ' artistic in of. The two parties so that such a consensus is possible in truth licence... And praising at the creation of identity, keeping society together, ruler..., izibongo fulfil an essential function in mediating power in Dyula society enormous one of! To political Latzguage attd Oratory in traditional African politics: a praise-name of Senzangakhona, Shaka ' D.P. Mafeje, commenting on the social significance is best expressed in extraordinary, language... The four major genres of izosha, Zulu oral poetry ( Vilakazi ). ' ( 1959: 28 ) in centralized societies like the Zulu kings here be presented &! Is directly related to the Future of Anthropological knowledge, the poets ' role is to help mediating the! Poet ( jordan 1959: 74 ), initiating the necessary interdisciplinary interaction between anthropology and literature consciousness...: University of Natal Press, 1968, 230 p. ( Oxford Library of African literature ) has liistory! Literature., idem ( eds ), 1369-681 5/98/0201 71-26 O 1998 of. But also know all about 'public opinion ' ( D.P 'artists (... ) theirs the...

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