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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Songs of a new era: popular music and political expression in the Ivorian crisis
Author:Schumann, Anne
Periodical:African Affairs: The Journal of the Royal African Society (ISSN 1468-2621)
Geographic term:Ivory Coast - Côte d'Ivoire
Subjects:popular music
civil wars
External link:http://afraf.oxfordjournals.org/content/112/448/440.full.pdf
Abstract:This article examines political discourses in 'patriotic' zouglou songs during the Ivorian crisis from 2002 to 2007, and reveals far-reaching and interwoven changes in the conduct of politics in post-Houphouët-Boigny Côte d'Ivoire: a more populist style of politics, a resurgent nationalism, and a newly engaged public sphere. Documenting the infrastructural arrangements that made 'patriotic' recordings and performances possible through the activities of political entrepreneurs in the Ivorian music business, the article reveals the struggle of musicians to retain control of their art form. It argues that a new generation of political actors used popular music as a tool of popular mobilization, and that the idioms of 'praise' and 'protest' do not capture the complex ways in which musicians positioned themselves in relation to politics. Instead, zouglou music became a contested space where politicians from both camps tried to co-opt musicians. The article thus contributes conceptually to the study of popular music and political discourse in Africa, and empirically to our understanding of recent Ivorian political history. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]