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The Singing Rooster

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The Singing Rooster

A Manobo Chief Emphasizes the Manobo Work Ethic

Hazel J. Wrigglesworth, Tigar Zacharius, Lingkà Ansulang, Ampatuan Ampalid, Pengendà Mengsenggilid
Foreword by Lawrence A. Reid

In this study, Dr. Wrigglesworth presents six narratives from the oral literature of the Ilianen Manobo, as presented by four master storytellers. The narratives are presented in diglot form with English translations done directly from performances by the Manobo storytellers in their own language. Numerous glosses footnoted throughout the English translation provide additional pertinent cultural, historical, and linguistic information which reveals a control of rhetorical devices that prove the narrators to be a master in the art of maintaining the emotional involvement of their audience throughout the long, nightime hours.

The plot of these narratives, with a host of Manobo rhetorical devices for heightening the vividness of that plot, is further shaped by the hands of skillful Manobo raconteurs in order to serve the function of providing maximum opportunity for reinforcing what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior in Manobo society. And when the story is further employed as 'parable' sempità, in establishing precedent in the settlement of Manobo custom-law cases, its reiterative force is unexcelled in Manobo oral tradition.

Audience responses are documented for one complete storytelling performance, revealing the narrator's involvement of her audience as Manobo society's jurors as they respond with moral assessments of the story-participants' characters. And comparative notes are provided at the beginning of each narrative, illuminating the tale-types (according to Aarne & Thompson classification of world oral literature) and the diaspora of the narratives.

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