[Mansa-l] Extended ASA Deadline Approaching

Kassim Kone Kassim.Kone at cortland.edu
Mon Apr 12 09:31:18 CDT 2010

Dear Mansadenw:

This is to remind you that the extended ASA deadline is coming on April 16. I am writing again to invite potential panelists for the panel that Barbara Hoffman and I propose for the San Francisco ASA.

Panel Proposal: Musical Heroes of the Mande Diaspora

In the home cultures of the Mande peoples, the requirements and characteristics of heroism follow the social division of occupations. Consequently, the Mande have separate terms for hero depending on the social status of the person noted for great achievement in a particular field. The tern ngana (hero) applies to individuals of all social background though it is most often associated with the so-called noble (hòròn) while ngara (hero) applies to artisan castes (nyamakala). Through exposure in the mass media in the early years of the Republic of Mali, jeli ngaraw in Mali began to be equated with the stars of popular Western music and star hood became a new form of heroism. Like the great heroes of the Mande epic for whom travels abroad, battles, and conquests became the stuff of lasting praise, today’s jeli ngaraw travel around the world, both physically and virtually, through social networking sites such as MySpace and FaceBook, where they connect with individuals and audiences both new to the Mande world and members of its Diaspora. The papers on this panel investigate the foundations and spread of musical heroism throughout the Mande Diaspora.

Kassim Kone

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