griot

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

Borrowing from French griot.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

griot (plural griots)

  1. A West African storyteller who passes on oral traditions; a wandering musician and poet.
    • 1995, Françoise Pfaff, Sembene, A Griot of Modern Times, in Michael T. Martin (editor), Cinemas of the Black Diaspora: Diversity, Dependence, and Oppositionality, page 118,
      Griots may be the chroniclers of an important family or of a group of people — like the Bambara hunters’ griot — or itinerant poets and musicians who extol the praises of the person who has hired them for a special festivity.
    • 1997, Paul Stoller, Sensuous Scholarship, page 15,
      When ethnographers are asked to read their works to gatherings of Songhay, elders, they, too, are considered griots.
      Ethnographers, however, usually consider themselves scholars, not griots. They prepare themselves for their life's work in a manner altogether different from that of the griot.
    • 2003, Melissa Thackway, Interview I: Adama Drabo, director, in Africa Shoots Back: Alternative Perspectives in Sub-Saharan Francophone African Film, page 183,
      I decided that it would be better for a griot to take us back into the legend, rather than me, a contemporary man. Griots have deeply marked me. I already narrated my first film, Ta Dona, in the same way that a griot would have.
  2. A Haitian dish of fried pork.