Summary of Lecture 7 readings

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13 Dec 2010
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Jennifer Liu! Readings Summaries HMU111 2010 Exam
Lecture 7: Indonesia: the Shadow-Play – Wayang Kulit
-wayang kulit: shadow-puppet theatre in Java, extraordinary power
-stories of Indian epics (Mahabharata, Ramayana) have more popularity and prestige
-depict a battle of disturbance of nature, restored to order
-Java: introd comic characters: servants to protagonists, serve as translators
-Javanese have many styles of speech based upon social class
-Semar: chief of clowns, lazy, all-knowing, more important than Hindu god Siva
-entertains audience with wit, wisdom
-all familiar characters in wayang communicate various modes of human existence and
manners of behaviour through actions
-wayang has long been a medium for moral and ethical instruction, discussion of
contemporary events
-dhalang: male puppeteer: thorough knowledge of karawitan (musical rep and practice)
-now dhalangs can learn puppeteering in schools, standardizes wayang stories and skills
A Ramayana Performance Kecak
-Walter Spies: developed kecak into tourist draw
-experience of something exotic, concise, professional, efficient use of time and
money
-kecak takes its name from the brusque, staccato monosyllables Monkey chant
-shouted by a large chorus of men in rapid and intricately interlocking rhythmic patterns, a
few other men imitate with their voices the sound of a small gamelan
-actor-dancers portray shortened Ramayana
-Sita is abducted by demon Ravana, Hanuman rescues her
-shouting is traditionally associated with rituals of divination: young girls are entranced in
order for questions to be put to the spirits that take possession of them
-Spies suggested using it as the foundation for a concise presentation of the Ramayaa
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