Skip navigation
Skip navigation

Songs that will keep ancestral languages alive: a Marrku songset from western Arnhem land

Brown, Reuben; Evans, Nicholas

Description

When songs are performed in socially meaningful and memorable contexts, they can act as vehicles that carry aspects of an individual�s language and identity, sometimes long after that person dies and his or her language is no longer spoken. In this chapter we present an illustrative case study from western Arnhem Land: the Milyarryarr (�black heron�) song-set, which is associated with the �extinct� languages of Marrku, Manangkardi, and Ilgar but continues to be performed by songman...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorBrown, Reuben
dc.contributor.authorEvans, Nicholas
dc.contributor.editorJim Wafer
dc.contributor.editorMyfany Turpin
dc.date.accessioned2019-09-17T01:03:56Z
dc.identifier.isbn978-1-922185-40-2
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/170471
dc.description.abstractWhen songs are performed in socially meaningful and memorable contexts, they can act as vehicles that carry aspects of an individual�s language and identity, sometimes long after that person dies and his or her language is no longer spoken. In this chapter we present an illustrative case study from western Arnhem Land: the Milyarryarr (�black heron�) song-set, which is associated with the �extinct� languages of Marrku, Manangkardi, and Ilgar but continues to be performed by songman Johnny Namayiwa. Before his death in 2003, the late Charlie Wardaga, who spoke these languages, handed over the songs to Namayiwa. While the languages were not part of Namayiwa�s linguistic repertoire, he was able to identify some song words in order to work up translations in Marrku with Nicholas Evans, who had previously worked with Wardaga. Namayiwa performs and teaches his inherited song-set in a variety of public ceremonial contexts. These include funeral ceremonies, Mamurrng (diplomacy) ceremonies, local festivals and celebrations. He has also added to the song-set some new compositions that were given to him in dreams. Public ceremony is prominent in western Arnhem Land, and song-sets such as Milyarryarr are performed alongside others in order to enact important social transitions and transactions. We suggest that it is this performance context that has enabled the transmission of knowledge of ancestral languages that are no longer spoken, which otherwise might not have been passed on.
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdf
dc.language.isoen_AU
dc.publisherHunter Press
dc.relation.ispartofRecirculating Songs: Revitalising the Singing Practices of Indigenous Australia
dc.relation.isversionof1st Edition
dc.rights© 2017 by Jim Wafer and Myfany Turpin
dc.source.urihttps://hunterpress.bigcartel.com/product/recirculating-songs-revitalising-the-singing-practices-of-indigenous-australia
dc.titleSongs that will keep ancestral languages alive: a Marrku songset from western Arnhem land
dc.typeBook chapter
local.description.notesImported from ARIES
local.description.refereedYes
dc.date.issued2017
local.identifier.absfor200406 - Language in Time and Space (incl. Historical Linguistics, Dialectology)
local.identifier.absfor160103 - Linguistic Anthropology
local.identifier.absfor200319 - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Languages
local.identifier.ariespublicationu5721749xPUB49
local.publisher.urlhttps://hunterpress.bigcartel.com/
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationBrown, Reuben, University of Melbourne
local.contributor.affiliationEvans, Nicholas, College of Asia and the Pacific, ANU
local.description.embargo2037-12-31
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage275
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage288
local.identifier.absseo950202 - Languages and Literacy
dc.date.updated2020-11-22T07:51:37Z
local.bibliographicCitation.placeofpublicationAustralia
CollectionsANU Research Publications

Download

File Description SizeFormat Image
01_Brown_Songs_that_will_keep_ancestral_2017.pdf7.77 MBAdobe PDF    Request a copy


Items in Open Research are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

Updated:  19 May 2020/ Responsible Officer:  University Librarian/ Page Contact:  Library Systems & Web Coordinator