se: verbalizing and visualizing creative power through art

Drawing mainly on his fieldwork and findings in Yorubaland, Nigeria, the author addresses the subject of ‘.s.e’, an enigmatic affective phenomenon in Yoruba art and culture, and elaborates on its critical role as a creative and effective power in the verbal and visual arts. ‘.s.e’ is that divine essence in which physics, metaphysics and art blend to form the energy or life force activating and directing sociopolitical, religious and artistic processes and experiences. ‘.s.e’ is an integral part of the Yoruba aesthetic. It is expressed, amongst others, in If divination texts and ‘ork’ (praise poetry), of which the author presents examples in Yoruba, with an English translation, the conical crown which is the traditional visual symbol and vestment of an ‘.oba’ (divine ruler), and the If diviner’s iron staff. Bibliogr., notes, ref.

Title: se: verbalizing and visualizing creative power through art
Author: Abiodun, Rowland
Year: 1994
Periodical: Journal of Religion in Africa
Volume: 24
Issue: 4
Pages: 309-322
Language: English
Geographic term: Nigeria
External link: https://www.jstor.org/stable/pdf/1581339.pdf
Abstract: Drawing mainly on his fieldwork and findings in Yorubaland, Nigeria, the author addresses the subject of ‘.s.e’, an enigmatic affective phenomenon in Yoruba art and culture, and elaborates on its critical role as a creative and effective power in the verbal and visual arts. ‘.s.e’ is that divine essence in which physics, metaphysics and art blend to form the energy or life force activating and directing sociopolitical, religious and artistic processes and experiences. ‘.s.e’ is an integral part of the Yoruba aesthetic. It is expressed, amongst others, in If divination texts and ‘ork’ (praise poetry), of which the author presents examples in Yoruba, with an English translation, the conical crown which is the traditional visual symbol and vestment of an ‘.oba’ (divine ruler), and the If diviner’s iron staff. Bibliogr., notes, ref.