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Native American Music and Dance - Essay Example

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Native American Music and Dance

Powwows, being a cultural display, are meticulously formed depictions, performances, or articulations of Native American past and contemporary reality as they want to express it. Organizing the occasion-- establishing the rules and regulations, registering partakers, and putting in order the activities (Heth 1992)— gives order and furnishes significance to this community gathering. The pan-Indian or supra-tribal feature of the powwow has encouraged scholars, especially anthropologists, to ridicule its recognition among early Indian cultures because they are anxious that it may displace culture-oriented rituals or practices (Heth 1992). Others perceive it as the only Native American blueprint evident in the life of several regional or ethnic groups. The Waccamaw Sioux’s powwow rites (Ellis, Lassiter, & Dunham 2005, 294) present a possibility of taking into account how performance and ceremonies characterize their identity in present-day American culture. Powwows are a vital link between non-Indians and Native Americans, even though numerous conflicts and issues should be addressed so as to build and sustain this cultural connection. Powwows are a quite intricate kind of communication on multiple extents, from the individual to the collective to the political (Ellis & Lassiter 2005)....
Some anthropologists, according to Koskoff (2005), also deal with the themes of intertribal support, pan-Indianism, and diverse identity. There is unfortunately insufficient literature on Native American powwows and there is no scholarship which deals with the entire intricacy of powwows and their function in Native America. Even though there are more and more scholarly works proclaiming powwows of Native America and taking into account occasions, and there are currently several accurate children’s literature dedicated to the images and sounds of the powwows and the participants, and there are a number of pictures which comprise the issues of the subject (Ellis & Lassiter 2005), there is still inadequate systematic and critical literature on the issue. As stated by Toelken (1991) in his work Ethnic Selection and Intensification in the Native American Powwow (as cited in Stern & Cicala 1991, 137): “Perhaps because their participants seem to be having fun instead of playing to the white stereotype of Indian stoicism… the contemporary intertribal powwow, an increasingly popular vernacular dance expression among Native Americans, has not been given much attention by scholars, even though it has become one of the most common articulations of ‘Indianness’ among Indians today.” Kiowa Song As the language of Kiowa keeps on weakening in its commonplace usage, a song is surfacing as a leading representation for expressing the identity and legacy of the Kiowa people. However, a song cannot be deprived of its storyline perspective; specifically, for numerous Kiowa singers, narrative is entirely important for interpreting songs (May & Hood 1983). Without a narrative, a song is only a cacophony of sound; nevertheless, with a narrative, sound ...Show more

Summary

Native American vocal and regional styles differ from region to region and ethnic group to ethnic group all over America. The vocal and instrumental styles are influence by the customs and circumstances of each ethnic group…
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Native American Music and Dance essay example
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