The Origin And The Development Of African Drama?


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Connor Sephton answered
The origin of African drama was action through music and dance that was ritualized to express emotions such as terror, passion and love. In many instances, these actions were imitations of what the people wanted to happen, so if they wanted to kill an enemy, they would act out the process.

Because they believed in what anthropologists now call Sympathetic Magic, they thought that imitating the real thing would enable it to happen. Religious and magical rituals were used and combined with dance and song. This meant that their re-enactments closely resembled the real thing as much as it was possible, which means that African drama was a vivid, very emotional experience.

African drama tended to fall into two distinct groups, the Sympathetic Magic performances were anticipatory and were used to project a desire that the African people felt would then result in reality (very much in the same way that many people today believe that if they put an idea or a desire out there in the universe it will be acted upon).

The other group of dramas was reactionary, and was used to celebrate a big occasion or some commemoration. Again, careful attention to detail was given to re-enact the occasion (perhaps a successful hunt or raid) as faithfully as possible, so that every detail was included.

These dramas are vital pieces of anthropological history and are treasured because they give very real accounts of actual events.

African drama has developed in two ways; it is a celebration of the past (an important and precious thing so that cultural preservation can be upheld in countries that had so much of their heritage stolen from them by colonizing countries); and for exploring modern African identities that are taking back cultural autonomy.

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