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ARCHIVAL RECORDINGS OF ETHIOPIAN ORATURE PRESERVED ON TAPES BY STEFAN STRELCYN [Abstract ID: 0509-03]
Stefan Strelcyn emerged from a traditional school of Ethiopian Studies oriented towards Amhara-Tigray culture rooted in Ge’ez heritage. However, during his academic career he extended his interest to other cultures and languages spoken in the area. It can be seen in the recordings he made during his research visit to Ethiopia in 1957/58, preserved on twenty tapes deposited at the Library of the Department of African Languages and Cultures at the University of Warsaw. The current presentation concentrates on describing the content of the recordings, with particular attention given to folk songs, which take up a substantial part of time on the tapes. Recordings include various examples of Amharic, Guragie, Harari, Tigrinia and Oromo folk songs and tales as well as Ge’ez religious poetry and songs. The most substantial is the material in Amharic containing azmari songs involving male and female singers as well as other folk songs which were sung on different occasions. The several hours of Ethiopian orature preserved on tapes by Stefan Strelcyn affirm the contribution of this prominent scholar to the development of Ethiopian studies, not only in its traditional scope but also in a much wider context.