Tambu : Curacao's African-Caribbean Ritual and the Politics of Memory

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As contemporary Tambu music and dance evolved on the Caribbean island of Curacao, it intertwined sacred and secular, private and public cultural practices, and many traditions from Africa and the New World. As she explores the formal contours of Tambu, Nanette de Jong discovers its variegated history and uncovers its multiple and even contradictory origins. De Jong recounts the personal stories and experiences of Afro-Curacaoans as they perform Tambu-some who complain of its violence and low-class attraction and others who champion Tambu as a powerful tool of collective memory as well as a way to imagine the future.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 182 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 15mm | 295g
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • English
  • 28 b&w illus., 2 maps
  • 0253223377
  • 9780253223371
  • 1,038,970

Table of contents

Introduction/Introducktorio: Get Ready! / Pone Bo Kla!
Part 1. Habri: Here It Is, the History of Tambu! / Ate Aki, Historia di Tambu!
1. The Story of Our Ancestors, the Story of Africa / E Kuenta di Nos Antepasados, e Kuenta di Afrika
2. Told through the Fierce Rhythms of the Drum / Konta pa e Ritmonan Furioso di su Bari
3. The Laws Couldn't Keep Tambu Away. The Church Couldn't Keep Tambu Away. / Leinan No Por a Tene Tambu Lew. Misa No Por a Tene Tambu Lew.
Part 2. Seru: Get Ready! Get Ready! / Pone Bo Kla! Pone Bo Kla!
4. Prepare for the Arrival of Our Ancestors / Prepara Bo pa e Jegada di Nos Antepasados
5. Clap Your Hands! / Bati Bo Mannan!
6. Come for the Party / Bin na e Fiesta
Conclusion/Conclui: Are You Ready? Are You Ready to Hear the History of Tambu? / Bo Ta Kla? Bo Ta Kla pa Tende e Historia di Tambu?
Glossary of Terms Referring to Tambu
List of Interviews
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Review quote

"Examines the practice of Tambu that is associated with the syncretic religious tradition of Montamentu using memory as a framing device for understanding the African-derived cultural values, musical expressions, and socio-politically resistant behaviors against dominant European-based ideals of acceptability." -Michael Largey, Michigan State University "To understand Tambu is to understand Caribbean music." -Donald Hill, SUNY-Oneonta
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About Nanette De Jong

Nanette de Jong is Senior Lecturer at the International Centre for Music Studies, Newcastle University.
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