DRUMBEAT IN OUR FEET by Patricia A. Keeler

DRUMBEAT IN OUR FEET

Age Range: 5 - 10
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KIRKUS REVIEW

A young reader’s guide to African dance. A dozen two-page spreads treat different aspects of the art form, each spread featuring a mini-essay (150 words or so) on the left, and a bit of descriptive text-cum-illustration on the right. For example, “Passing the Traditions” explains how dances are connected to myths and lore, which the older generation teaches the younger; the illustration shows adult dancers instructing a group of children. “Image Dances” explains a whole group of dances that mimic animal movements; dancing children with fancy costumes fill the illustration. “Spirits and Ancestors” traces the connection between dancing and honoring the past; the illustration shows dancers painting their bodies with white dots, each representing a departed family member. Keeler’s lyrical paintings, in watercolor and colored pencil, capture important details but not the emotion or power of the movement. There’s also an article with pictures about Batoto Yetu, a Harlem-based dance group, a pronunciation guide and a brief bibliography. Should prompt further study of its fascinating subject. (Picture book. 5-10)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2006
ISBN: 1-58430-264-X
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Lee & Low
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2006




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