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The Performance of Afro-Cuban Santeria

In Divine Utterances, Katherine J. Hagedorn explores the enduring cultural and spiritual power of the music of Afro-Cuban Santería and the process by which it has been transformed for a secular audience. She focuses on the integral connections between sacred music performances and the dramatizations of theatrical troupes, especially the state-sponsored Conjunto Folklórico Nacional de Cuba and examines the complex relationships involving race, politics and religion in Cuba. The music that Hagedorn describes, is rooted in Afro-Cuban religious tradition, and today pervades a secular performance that can produce a trance in audience members in the same way as a traditional religious ceremony.
Hagedorn's analysis is deeply informed by her experiences in Cuba as a woman, scholar and apprentice batá drummer. She argues that constructions of race and gender, the politics of pre- and post-Revolutionary Cuba, the economics of tourism and contemporary practices within Santería have contributed to a blurring of boundaries between the sacred and the folkloric. As both modes now vie for primacy in Cuba's burgeoning tourist trade, what had once been the music of a marginalized group is now a cultural expression of national pride.
The compact disc that accompanies the book includes examples of twenty songs to the orichas, or Afro-Cuban deities, performed by prominent musicians, including Lázaro Ros, Francisco Aguabella, Alberto Villarreal and Zenaida Armenteros.

More Information
  • Published : 17/08/2001
  • ISBN : 9781560989479
  • Format : Paperback
  • Imprint : Smithsonian Books
  • Size (mm): 152 x 229
  • Category: Religion
  • Pages : 312
  • Edition :