The Shout

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How did African music and dance survive in the colonies? Can we be confident of the legitimacy of these practices? Doubters suggest the enslaved discontinued African patterns have been replaced over time by imitations of non-African folk music they heard. Some based their opinions on flawed historical inquiry. Others relied on a prejudiced mind, unable to concede that African descendants were capable of creating such a body of work. Removing these exceptions removes the inferiority argument and any value it may have. This study is a counter-narrative to that argument. The ring shout, in this context, is a ritual practice that owes much to West Central African influence.