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Francis Bebey, Josephine Bennett's African Music: A People's Art PDF

By Francis Bebey, Josephine Bennett

ISBN-10: 1613746598

ISBN-13: 9781613746592

Attractive and enlightening, this consultant explores African music's varieties, musicians, tools, and position within the lifetime of the folks. A discography categorized via nation, topic, team, and software can be included.

Original version: 1969
English translation: 1975, Josephine Bennett

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Example text

Nevertheless, we have to make a decision, one way or another, in order to write history. We seem to be forced to choose between one of two ways of establishing transmission—one that is too stringent and another that is too weak. Moreover, the decision we make, when systematically adopted, will profoundly shape the history we write. If we take the weak requirement that priority of discovery and the existence of a corridor of communication are crucial, we will assume transmission to have occurred whenever it is possible.

A major pioneer in this direction was Joseph Needham, with his series Science and Civilization in China, the first volume of which was published in 1954. Needham argued that many scientific ideas and technological discoveries earlier attributed to Europe had actually originated in China. Needham’s groundbreaking studies—the most comprehensive modern survey of the scientific and technological accomplishments of any civilization outside Europe—were followed in 1968 by Nasr’s Science and Civilization in Islam, which, although concerned only with documenting Arabic science on its own terms, nevertheless examined the profound influence of Arabic scientists on their modern counterparts.

However, by precluding in advance any significant multicultural influences in shaping the rise of modern science, Cohen is led to answer the question by reference only to cultural values and institutions within Europe. This is precisely the sort of Eurocentric answer we have seen offered by Ronan. Nevertheless, Cohen’s careful scholarship and faithful concern to present with integrity views that he obviously disagrees with makes his account—despite its Eurocentrism— both informed and nuanced. Cohen begins by qualifying his historical account as a highly provisional sketch.

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African Music: A People's Art by Francis Bebey, Josephine Bennett

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