Resistance is Art, South African master trumpeter Hugh Masekela maintained.
He passed away January 2018. His legendary Jazz music protested segregation, separation, slavery, and the government controlling political policy.
He consistently aimed to connect with the young South African Youth advocating preserving South African Heritage he considered in danger of dying.
The Legend was a Master Trumpeter, expressing his resistance to political injustice, corruption and long standing prejudice of his homeland.
Art is an expression of the human condition. Emotion in particular. Artists use a variety of mediums to carry their messages, like paintings, drawings, music, drama, poetry, prose as well as many other modes of expression.
Symbolism is a technique that he uses to represent his messages about political, cultural, environmental, and personal injustices so common in the region.
Any piece of art typically projects perspectives of the world unfolding around them as a sign of the times. Intentionally or not, the dynamics of society surface in tone, mood and attitude.
For example, his widely known song, Stimela,
Resistance is Art at its core and can help society recover and blossom during times of unrest and oppression. These forces often are deeply rooted in corruption and greed.
Oppressive regimes tend to impose inhumane conditions that target and separate specific groups of people.
These dehumanization tactics take a toll on the varying ethnic cultural identities. Stimela in contrast personifies the train bringing men to work long hours, bedded as hostiles, deep in the belly of the earth, to mine minerals and harvest golden veins only to drape and adorn the proud prejudiced privileged.
He animates with music the sound and effect of the steam locomotive chugging and cooing. The rhythm echoes the cries of the submissive passengers doing their time in the mine with little pay. And when they hear the Stimela, “They curse that Coal Train”
Prisoners of War (POW) survivors describe entire covert languages they have created with wisps of a broom, a knock on a pipe or two, birdsongs and many other creative ways to express their condition to a sympathetic ear. As humans, we need to express a voice to the voiceless and a rhythm to a heartbeat that assures a mutual understanding of things that have no words, actions that have no reactions, hope to situations that seem hopeless. Culture, some would say.
Like the Creole languages created from slave trade commerce jargon and some of the lingering mother tongue of the African American Slave Trade era.
In fact, the widely known song Amazing Grace (that saved a wretch like me) written by a former slave trader holds himself in contempt for his very own prior misunderstanding of goodwill and
Melody maker, Hugh Masekela’s music serves as a unification of South Africans in their continued struggle for peaceful protesting against segregation, separation, slavery, and government corruption.
His continued work and goal to connect with the young South African Youth in order to preserve their customs and culture of peaceful, positive, constructive symbolism that will serve to illustrate his high principals, resistance is art.
Tracy Robinson is a writer in Georgia.
She has written short fiction for the “Spectrum” magazine and book reviews for the “Infantry” magazine. Her poetry has been published in anthologies such as “Expressions of the Heart.” She began writing professionally in 2000.
She has earned a B.A. in language and literature from Columbus State University. She has earned a Paralegal Career Diploma from Penn Foster.
Her passion is peace.