Songs of the Empty Place

Songs of the Empty Place

The Memorial Poetry of the Foi of the Southern Highlands Province of Papua New Guinea

Authored by: James Weiner, Don Niles

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Description

For 31 months between 1979 and 1995, James F. Weiner conducted anthropological research amongst the Foi people in Southern Highlands Province, Papua New Guinea. This book contains the transcriptions, translations, and descriptions of the songs he recorded.

The texts of women’s sago songs (obedobora), men’s ceremonial songs (sorohabora), and women’s sorohabora are included. Men turn the prosaic content of womenís sago songs into their own sorohabora songs, which are performed the night following large-scale inter-community pig kills, called dawa. While women sing sago songs by themselves, men sing their ceremonial songs in groups of paired men. Women also have their own ceremonial versions of such songs.

The songs are memorial in intent; they are designed to commemorate the lives of men who are no longer living. Most commonly they do so by naming the places the deceased inhabited during his lifetime.

These song texts and translations are introduced by Weiner. Ethnomusicologist Don Niles then brings together information about each type of song and considers these Foi genres in relation to those of neighbouring groups, highlighting aspects of regional performance styles. Consideration is also given to the poetic devices used in Papua New Guinea songs.

Eighteen recordings illustrating the Foi genres discussed in this book are available for download.

It remains uncertain how such songs may be affected by the major oil extraction project that has been undertaken in the region for more than two decades.

This book will interest students of anthropology, ethnomusicology, linguistics, verbal art, aesthetics, and cultural heritage.

Details

ISBN (print):
9781925022223
ISBN (online):
9781925022230
Publication date:
Jul 2015
Imprint:
ANU Press
DOI:
http://dx.doi.org/10.22459/SEP.07.2015
Series:
Monographs in Anthropology
Disciplines:
Arts & Humanities: Art & Music, Cultural Studies, History, Linguistics; Social Sciences: Anthropology, Indigenous Studies
Countries:
Pacific

Online example 01 (audio/mpeg, 3.80 MB)

Sago Song 1, performed by Mu’ubiaka

Online example 02 (audio/mpeg, 3.50 MB)

Sago Song 2, performed by Kunuhuaka

Online example 03 (audio/mpeg, 1.60 MB)

Sago Song 3, performed by Gebo

Online example 04 (audio/mpeg, 3.83 MB)

Sago Song 4, performed by Kunuhuaka

Online example 05 (audio/mpeg, 1.86 MB)

Sago Song 5, performed by Gebo

Online example 06 (audio/mpeg, 4.06 MB)

Sago Song 6, performed by Kunuhuaka (with Siyame)

Online example 07 (audio/mpeg, 1.95 MB)

Sago Song 7, performed by Kunuhuaka (with Siyame)

Online example 08 Sorohabora A (audio/mpeg, 4.70 MB)

Men’s Song 2, performed by Memene and Abeabo
Men’s Song 7, performed by Wa’o and Midibaru
Men’s Song 9, performed by Kora and Garibi

Online example 09 Sorohabora B (audio/mpeg, 4.78 MB)

Men’s Song 3, performed by Memene and Abeabo
Men’s Song 8, performed by Wa’o and Midibaru
Men’s Song 10, performed by Kora and Garibi

Online example 10 Sorohabora C (audio/mpeg, 5.70 MB)

Men’s Song 11, performed by Gesa and Sariaba
Men’s Song 13, performed by Nabu and Bogo
Men’s Song 17, performed by Oromene and Fahaisabo
Men’s Song 19, performed by Muya and Agiri

Online example 11 Sorohabora D (first line slightly cut) (audio/mpeg, 2.90 MB)

Men’s Song 20, performed by Oromene and Fahaisabo
Men’s Song 21, performed by Muya and Agiri

Online example 12 Sorohabora E (audio/mpeg, 3.75 MB)

Men’s Song 42, performed by Fahaisabo and Oromene
Men’s Song 22, performed by Muya and Agiri

Online example 13 (audio/mpeg, 3.08 MB)

Women’s Song 1, performed by Kunuhuaka and Wa’abiyu

Online example 14 (audio/mpeg, 3.12 MB)

Women’s Song 2, performed by Kunuhuaka and Wa’abiyu

Online example 15 (audio/mpeg, 4.69 MB)

Women’s Song 3, performed by Kunuhuaka and Wa’abiyu

Online example 16 (audio/mpeg, 2.59 MB)

Women’s Song 4, performed by Kunuhuaka and Wa’abiyu

Online example 17 (audio/mpeg, 2.60 MB)

Women’s Song 5, performed by Kunuhuaka and Wa’abiyu

Online example 18 (audio/mpeg, 6.83 MB)

Women’s Song 7, performed by Yiakahua and Ama’a

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