Our culture lacks--and much needs--puberty rites for adolescents, such as civilized societies have. These ceremonies teach kids adult roles, reinforce community values, celebrate sex, define the licit and illicit, increase social cohesion, help teens through a difficult period, justify a big party, honor the gods, etc. I'll describe the rites of Ghana's Ashanti people, play 2 songs and a 1958 health-class movie for girls, and discuss why puberty rites won't soon be coming to the U.S.
LISTENER ADVISORY: Adult themes. (Advisory announced at program start.)
"New World Notes" is produced under the auspices (Latin for "first floor") of WWUH-FM, a community service of that beacon of light in darkest Connecticut, the University of Hartford.
Originally broadcast in September 2008 (as NWN #31). With this rebroadcast (#267), "Puberty Rites" is available for the first time in a broadcast-quality, high-fidelity audio format.
Includes 2 songs of comic satire:
Tom Lehrer, "Be Prepared!"
Roy Zimmerman, "Nothing But the Best [For Our Little Girl]"
Movie is "Molly Grows Up" (1958)
The photo I discuss--and the complete text of the article that I read in part--are here: http://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/tribes/puberty_rites.php .
For written commentary, photos & other graphics, videos, great links, and an archive of past installments, please see this show's Web site: http://newworldnotes.blogspot.com. Permanent link to the entry for this installment: http://newworldnotes.blogspot.com/2013/04/puberty-rites.html.
SERIES OVERVIEW -- Political and social commentary in a variety of genres. Exploring the gap between what we want ... and what they're trying to make us settle for. "Date recorded," below, = date of first scheduled broadcast.
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