TOPIC: Primary Sources
Tonight's #worldgeochat touched on teaching geography with primary sources. As a inspiration for the creation of tonight's playlist, I focused on a cultural sound itself as a primary source. Below are three of my own principles for music as a primary source in social studies and geography education.
- Traditional (i.e. pre-modern, non-electronic) musical instruments are regionally specific technologies created through the use of locally or regionally sourced materials and designed to maximize sound production in symbiosis with the sonic topography. (NCSS C-3: D2.Geo.6; D2.Geo.10; D2.His.9-13)
- Songs and lyrics are historical documents that describe events of a specific time, place and perspective. (NCSS C-3: D2.His.1-15) Songwriters are influenced by their surroundings and use their medium to vividly describe the visual topography and events.
- Music is a fundamental aspect of human cultural development, used to express universal themes through regionally and culturally unique forms. (NCSS C-3: D2.Soc.6-7; Anthropology: Appendix D Concept 1.)
Instruments are Artifacts, and Songs are stories. Here is the Griot/Jali Foday Musa Suso of West Africa playing a Kora. http://
Following a sound can reveal a migration or forced migration in the case of African music coming to the Americas. From West Africa to North American, the Kora influenced the creation of the Banjo.
From an ancient tradition of storytelling in West Africa, the role of the Griot became the North American blues singer.
QUESTION: This is the first recording of a song that probably originated from an oral tradition. Is this a primary source?
Fullcircle: From the Kora and Griot of West Africa to the Banjo and BluesSinger in North America and then back to West Africa with the original African Blues Man Ali Farka Touré.