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Rumba: A philosophy of motion

Black Caribbean Literature (BCL)
Richter,Petra (Author)
Publication Date:
New Haven, CT: Yale University
African American Research Center, Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject Term:
Caribbean area, Blacks, Literature, Cuba, Africa, African diaspora, Dance, Communication, nonverbal, Art history, Afro-Cuban, Iconography, Rumba
273 p., Explores the iconography of Cuban rumba--a unique AfroCuban dance and music complex that represents the foundation of contemporary Cuban popular culture--and argues that rumba constitutes an essential part of a greater African-based ontology. Rumba dance performance is conceptualized as knowledge embodied, an avatar of nonverbal cultural communication and consciousness, which plays a central role in the organization of daily life and formation of identity. This dissertation demonstrates that concrete continuities exist between the diaspora and mainland Africa through close scrutiny of rumba and parallel performance art traditions in north, west and central Africa. Also attempts to identify specific African-based stylistic conventions as exemplified by Sahara's Imazighen (also known as Berber) peoples, Mali's Mande (known as Gangá in Cuba) and related groups, and the Kongo civilization establishing that although ethno-cultural boundaries exist, they tend to be permeable.