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Monday, October 1 • 16:30 - 17:00
Reconnecting Ghanaians with Robert Sutherland Rattray (1881-1983) wax cylinder recordings

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Captain Robert Sutherland Rattray (1881-1938) studied anthropology at Oxford. He spent many years studying the Ashanti. He became District Governor for the Ejura region of Ashanti in 1911 and head of the Anthropological Department of Asante in 1921. As part of that role he made roughly 35 brown wax cylinder recordings in the area in 1922, representing some of the earliest recordings from West Africa and certainly the first explorations of the so-called 'talking drum', or surrogate speech in which the drum is used to convey speech in the form of messages and literature. The British Library has digitised these wax cylinders and at this conference is bringing digital copies to the Institute of African Studies where they will be made available for study. This paper will explore the broader theoretical and methodological context within which such 'reconnection' activities are undertaken as well as the potential impact they can have on local and international knowledge exchange.

avatar for Judith Opoku-Boateng

Judith Opoku-Boateng

Archivist, Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana

avatar for Janet Topp Fargion

Janet Topp Fargion

Lead Curator, World and Traditional Music, British Library
Janet Topp Fargion is an ethnomusicologist with research interests in South Africa and the Swahili Coast. She graduated with a PhD from the School of Oriental and African Studies in 1992. She joined the British Library in 1994 as Lead Curator of World and Traditional Music where she... Read More →

Monday October 1, 2018 16:30 - 17:00 GMT
Main Hall / Auditorium Department of Economics, University of Ghana, Legon

Attendees (7)