Cornell University Library site
Libraries and Hours Ask a Librarian

African Cultural Survival in the Americas

Joseph E. Holloway is Professor of Pan African Studies at California State University, Northridge. He is author of Liberian Diplomacy in AfricaAfricanisms in American Culture, and African Heritage of American English. The tape collection reflects the research that Dr. Holloway conducted on the Gullah people of South Carolina.

Interview with Leroy Brown, first Black Elected to Office since reconstruction; and an interview with Dan Watson on Gullah Heritage. Note: Begins with view of one of the Sea Islands without narration; followed by an interview with Leroy Brown. Brown is a local politician and gives a historical overview of politics of the Gullah community. This is followed by an interview with Charles Daniel Watson who talks about his life and the history of the Gullah community. AFR Video 233 v.1

Interviews with Dan Watson and Rev. Ervin Greene. Note: The interview with Dan Watson on Gullah heritage continues. He gives examples of spiritual songs. Rev. Greene, project director for Sea Island Bible Translation Team, talks about importance of translating the bible as well as Africanisms in the Gullah heritage. AFR Video 233 v.2

Interview with the Chief of Oyotunji (Sheldon, South Carolina). Note: Chief Oba Oseijiman Efuntila I of the village of Oyotunji refers to similarities between Gullah and Yoruba cultures. He reflects on the roles of females and males, and talks about African American social conditions. AFR Video 233 v.3, Pt.1

Oyotunji Interviews; Chief Alagba on New World Africanisms. Note: Sea Island beaches are displayed for several minutes without narration. A tour and explanation of various African artifacts is given. Chief Alagba talks about the historical relationship between the Oyotunji village and the religion and traditions of Yoruba culture. He speaks about male dominance in Gullah culture and traces this to Igbo culture in Nigeria. He also speaks about male and female roles and how they are supportive of one another. AFR Video 233 v.3, Pt.2

Interview with Claude and Pat Sharpe on Gullah Translation of the Bible; Coffin Point Grave yard; Ron Daise on Oral History/Folklore–Part 1AFR Video 233 v.4

Interview with Claude and Pat Sharpe; Gullah Language and Culture–Part 2AFR Video 233 v.5

Africanisms–Coiled Baskets; Grave sites, SlidesAFR Video 233 v.6-7

New Orleans (Kongo Square); Africa House; Ulyses S. Davis, Wood Carver; Interview with W.W. Law on History of Africans in GeorgiaAFR Video 233 v.8

Africanisms and Gullah Culture. 8th Annual Heritage Folklore Gospel Music. Part 2. November 11, 1987. Note: Features a chorus of gospel singers. AFR Video 233 v.9

Africanisms and Gullah Culture. 7th Annual Celebration; Spirituals and Folklore. November 14, 1987. Note: Contains a number of different events. The first event is a parade lasting approximately 42 minutes. The second event is a 3 minute prayer service. The third event is a musical interlude featuring the Africano Two which lasts approximately 45 minutes. The fourth event features Ms. Janie Hunter, a folklorist, who narrates on slavery, her family, and survival. Her stories are told in oral tradition of Gullah culture with a mixture of narrative and singing. The fifth event is another musical interlude featuring the Africano Two. The sixth event features young people performing contemporary rap music. The seventh and final event features Rev. Ervin Green and Ron reading selected versions of the Bible in both Gullah and English. AFR Video 233 v.10

Africanisms and Gullah Culture. 7th Annual Penn School Heritage Celebration. November 14, 1987. Note: Begins with Dan Watson, 78 years old, telling stories in the oral tradition of Gullah culture. This is followed by a group of male gospel singers. AFR Video 233 v.11

Africanisms and Gullah Culture. 9th Annual Heritage Day Celebration. November 9-11, 1989. Note: This tape’s quality is poor the first few minutes. Begins with a tour of a church cemetery. Explanations are given about the importance of various headstones and artifacts. This is followed by a gospel musical group called the Southern Travelers of St. Helena Island. Next is Dan Watson of St. Helena Island, a folklorist, who tells stories and sings spirituals in the Gullah tradition. The Uhura Dance Troupe follows Mr. Watson. Members of the dance troupe range from age six through eight. They are trained in the African dance tradition by Hortense Moody. Ring Shouts are performed by a group of elder women and men. The ring shouts are a form of expression incorporated from a variety of West African ceremonies. The performance is followed by a fashion show of teens modeling 1920’s through 1940’s clothing. Next, Moses Camara from Sierra Leone recites some stories; followed by the Bible Tones of Burden gospel group. AFR Video 233 v.12