Symbols of Inclusion and Exclusion

Veit Erlmann

in Music, Modernity, and the Global Imagination

Published in print July 1999 | ISBN: 9780195123678
Published online May 2008 | e-ISBN: 9780199868797 | DOI:
Symbols of Inclusion and Exclusion

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One of the key items on the program of the African Choir was the “Great Hymn”, composed in the 1820s by Ntsikana Gaba, one of the first Xhosa Christian converts. Ntsikana's composition has been subject to numerous reworkings, which reveal the ambiguity at the heart of the colonial project. The reception of the “Great Hymn” by the British public, likewise, highlights the growing tensions between the liberal premises of the “civilizing mission” and the emerging jingoist climate of the last decade of the 19th century.

Keywords: Ntsikana Gaba; Xhosa; missions; prophecy; imperialism; liberalism; Christianity; Great Hymn

Chapter.  9411 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Ethnomusicology

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