Amandla A Revolution In 4-Part Harmony Analysis

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Amandla! A Revolution in Four-Part Harmony Film Essay Amandla! A Revolution in Four-Part Harmony is a film that portrayed Apartheid in South Africa around the late 1940’s and early 1990’s. Music was a big influence to the South Africans during this time period, but the reason for that being is part of what is being discussed. Some believe that music resulted from the resistant movement against Apartheid because the songs that were sung were consisted of their struggles with the issue. Protest occurred often in South Africa to put up resistance to the Apartheid. The nonwhite South Africans had no say in the government and they were basically shunned from using public places. Segregation of the races in South Africa was the main part of the …show more content…
was called “Watch Out Verwoerd,” referencing the Father of Apartheid and Prime Minister of South Africa, Hendrik Verwoerd. The song was used to make the whites mad by implying that they need to watch out because the black men were coming. This song has a strong meaning to it by claiming things were going to change, but overall it was written in a fun and playful way. As the title of the movie suggests, this song has a four-part harmony throughout. A membranophone of some type along with vocals is being played. The song would be considered a chant because they are trying to get a meaning across. There seems to be more than one part with different people singing different notes so this song would fit along the lines of polyphony. Another song that was heard in the film was “Nkosi Sikele’l Afrika” meaning “Lord Bless Africa” which was used against Apartheid laws when protesting. As the title comes across, this song was used by the African National Congress for South Africa’s anthem. This song was not very similar with the other songs because it was not about what they did not like it was about being blessed by God. “Nkosi Sikele’l Afrika” had a slower tempo to it than the first song and incorporated idiophones. The song would be considered a homophony because the song seemed to have an even rhythm with everyone singing. Around the end of the song there is an instrumental solo with the idiophones where vocals were left out. The third influential song heard in the film was “Senzeni Na?” which means “What Have We Done?” in English. A few people mentioned that they could use this song in order to touch each other’s hearts through the music. Nelson Mandela was sentenced to life in prison in 1964 and this song showed the slow, burning feeling it made the nonwhite South Africans feel. While Mandela was in prison his supporters were protesting to get him out and make things right because he was their influence to begin with. Repetition and

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