Relevant Research Information

21 Feb

A few resources for those who want some background on the style:
Tichumaren entry on Wikipedia:

Tishoumaren, or Tichumaren, is a style of music in northern Africa. The musical style took shape as an expression of the difficult social-political situation of the Tamasheq (or, as they are commonly referred to by people other than themselves, the Tuareg), over the last three to four decades. The word Tishoumaren is derived from the French word chômeur, meaning “the unemployed”.) The emergence of this style of music, which has also come to be called, more simply, “guitar music,”[1] cannot be separated, in particular, from the story of the band known as Tinariwen, or, more generally, from the emergence of the Tamasheq as a people and a culture from the violent turmoil that has been a running theme in the post-colonial history of the region which they call home, in Northern Africa. Today, the style remains politically critical, although it has become less associated with the violent rebelliousness out of which it took form.

If you are interested in something more academic, here are more resources:

Susan Rasmussen seems to be the authority on the “rebel” music of contemporary Tuareg life. Two papers that can be accessed at your local library (email me for other details):

  • Moving beyond Protest in Tuareg Ichumar Musical Performance
    Susan Rasmussen, University of Houston
  • Between Several Worlds: Images of Youth and Age in Tuareg Popular Performances
    Author(s): Susan J. Rasmussen
    Reviewed work(s):Source: Anthropological Quarterly, Vol. 73, No. 3, Youth and the Social Imagination in Africa,Part 1 (Jul., 2000), pp. 133-144
    Published by: The George Washington University Institute for Ethnographic Research
    Stable URL: .

The following is an MA thesis that is very informative, and highly recommended.

If you are interested in Tuareg culture in a general sense, Jeremy Keenan is the best academic and reporter out there. He is currently covering the Tuareg rebellion’s resurgence in the Sahel, which threatens to destabilize many of the sub-Saharan African countries. Here’s a few of his pertinent works:

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Posted by on February 21, 2012 in Uncategorized


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