Tuesday, September 06, 2005

The African Connection

Renee pointed out on her blog to the fascinating puppets from Mali, check this site for some background and even some sounds. It is important to note that puppets are an integral part of tribal life and the memory and thoughts that would otherwise be lost are preserved and transmitted through this form. In tribal societies puppets and maks are agents of transformation. Myths and legends are relived, ilnesses cured, spirits guided and practical information transmitted. These are some good articles about masks: 1 , 2

You can find some wonderful puppets, including some from Mali at the Center for Puppetry Arts like this beautiful rod puppet that is used to tell stories relevant to a farming or agricultural society since this migrating Kono (bird) signals the arrival of the rain.

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