Japanese Journal of Cultural Anthropology
Online ISSN : 2424-0516
Print ISSN : 1349-0648
ISSN-L : 1349-0648
Special Theme: Dynamics in the Indexical Process of Signification: Perspectives from Linguistic Anthropology
Embedding of Reciprocal Singing in a Context
A Case Study of Khap Samneua in Laos
Gaku Kajimaru
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2020 Volume 84 Issue 4 Pages 463-481


This paper aims at analyzing the expression of Khap Samneua with the semiotic communication theory of Michael Silverstein, Koyama's event model, and Ethnopoetics to illuminate how Khap Samneua is embedded in the situation and context. In this paper, a performance of Khap Samneua at a night of merit-sending ritual in 2013 is analyzed. The sequence of performance can be categorized into "dialogue about ritual," "Khap too nyee (mocked flirting duet)," and "celebration to listeners who left a tip in a cup." In the sequence, singers manipulate its indexical/symbolic expressions to put their performance properly between real and ideal context and shift their communication structure. Through semiotic analysis, it is revealed that the practice is based on the interpretation framework which a constant sound indexes, singers sound many voices in their duet singing with changing footing, and connect symbolic world and empirical world with indexical textualization and contextualization by using poetic expressions.

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2020 Japanese Society of Cultural Anthropology
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