Yukar


Yukar

are Ainu sagas that form a long rich tradition of oral literature. In older periods the epics were performed by both men and women; during the 19th and early 20th centuries, when Ainu culture was in decline, women were generally the most skilful performers.

Traditional tales describe floating worlds with "Ainu Mosir", or the land of the humans (as opposed to "Kamui Mosir", the land of the gods), resting on the back of a fish whose movements cause earthquakes.

Dr. Kyōsuke Kindaichi collected yukar and translated them into Japanese.

In August 2006, the Asahi Shimbun reported in its article that Japan's Agency of Cultural Affairs ("Bunkacho") is about to discontinue funding by fiscal year 2007 of the project of translating nihongo|Kan-nari Matsu Notebooks|金成マツノート|Kan-nari Matsu Nōto, which consist of 92 yukar stories written in Romaji with the tenth story lost and 49 stories left untranslated. It is said that the stoppage is because of Shigeru Kayano's death in May 2006.

In 1999 a multi-national group of educators and translators established [http://web.mac.com/dosankodebbie/iWeb/Site%202/Home.html Project U-e-peker] with the intention of making more Ainu folktales available in English. They have produced English versions of two of Kayano's books under the titles "The Ainu: A Story of Japan's Original People" (Tuttle Publishing 2004) and "The Ainu and the Fox" (RIC Publications 2006). Future projects include picturebook English versions of the yukar recorded in nihongo|"Ainu Shin'yōshū"|アイヌ神謡集, an anthology of stories from the Ainu oral tradition which were first put into writing and translated into the Japanese language by Chiri Yukie (1903-1922), the niece of Kannari Matsu, and invaluable assistant to Kindaichi until she died at the tender age of 19.

Perhaps the only book relating the epic songs of the Ainu in English is "Songs of Gods, Songs of Humans: The Epic Tradition of the Ainu" by Donald L. Philippi. Philippi translates 35 epics, all of them originally recorded by women, the majority by Imekanu.

ee also

*Ainu music

Bibliography

*Donald L. Philippi, "Songs of Gods, Songs of Humans: The Epic Tradition of the Ainu". University of Tokyo Press, 1979; North Point, 1982. ISBN 0-691-06384-2.


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  • Yukar — Les yukar (ユーカラ, yukar?) sont des sagas aïnues qui constituent une longue et riche tradition de littérature orale. Dans des périodes plus anciennes, la narration était réalisée à la fois par des hommes et des femmes ; au XIXe siècle et au… …   Wikipédia en Français

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  • ÉPOPÉE — Proche du mythe, l’épopée chante l’histoire d’une tradition, un complexe de représentations sociales, politiques, religieuses, un code moral, une esthétique. À travers le récit des épreuves et des hauts faits d’un héros ou d’une héroïne, elle met …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Yukie Chiri — In this Japanese name, the family name is Chiri . Yukie Chiri (知里 幸恵, Chiri Yukie?, June 8 1 …   Wikipedia

  • Ainu people — Infobox Ethnic group group=Ainu Group of Ainu people, 1904 photograph. poptime=50,000 people with half or more Ainu ancestry Pre Japanese era: 50,000, ethnically homogeneous Ainu popplace=flagcountry|Japan flagcountry|Russia langs=Ainu is the… …   Wikipedia

  • Kamui — or Kamuy is the Ainu word for a spiritual or divine being in Ainu mythology.ConceptIn concept, kamui are similar to the Japanese kami the term is sometimes translated as god or divine spirit , but these translations may miss some of the nuances… …   Wikipedia

  • Música ainu — Los ainu, pueblo del norte de Japón, poseen una tradición musical autónoma. Los géneros incluyen el antiguo yukar (mimo), que es una forma de poesía épica, y upopo, en el que la segunda voz de contrapunto tiene que imitar la fórmula musical de la …   Wikipedia Español

  • Imekanu — (イめかぬ o いめかぬ, Imekanu? 1875 1961), también conocida por su nombre japonés, Matsu Kannari, fue una misionera y escritora ainu. Vida y Obra Imekanu perteneció a una familia ainu de Horobetsu …   Wikipedia Español

  • Ainu music — refers to the musical traditions of the Ainu people of northern Japan.Genres include the oldest, yukar (mimicry), which is a form of epic poetry, and upopo, in which the second contrapuntal voice had to imitate the musical formula in the first… …   Wikipedia


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