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December 2021

Music and xylophone texts of southern Toussian (Burkina Faso)

Journal/Book: Anthropos. 1999; 94: Editions St-Paul, Perolles 42, CH-1700 Fibourg, Switzerland. Anthropos Inst. 163-180.

Abstract: Among the Toussian who live in the southwest of Burkina Faso, the xylophonists - generally known as ''Griot'' - have a very important role in the society. This is particularly expressed at the occasion of the initiation into the Do society, the most important social and religious institution of these people. Every xylophonist is characterised by the intention to express words and whole sentences by the means of melody and rhythm, whereby the course of the melody is clearly influenced by the tones of the language used. The southern Toussian is a Gur language which seems not to be related to the over Upper Voltaic languages. The 71 xylophone texts which are introduced here belong to four musical groups: agriculture, the great initiation, marriage, and burial.

Note: Article Trost F, Schmedesweg 15-7, A-1160 Vienna, AUSTRIA

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