Cover: Dressed in traditional handwoven Karen vest and the military fatigues of the Karen Resistance Army, musician Saw Noven performs don dance music on electric guitar during the January 16, 2006, Karen new year celebration at Tabernacle Baptist Church in Utica, New York. Photo: Felicia McMahon.
FROM THE EDITOR
2006 issue of Voices
contains a unique collection
of essays that
range from historical
research and theory by
Roger D. Abrahams
to fieldwork by ethnomusicologist
Heather MacLachlen. Abrahams
writes about the Anti-Rent War, intercultural
imitation, and the Calico Indians, an
early vigilante group that operated as social
bandits, while MacLachlen discusses her work
among the Karen people in a refugee camp
in Thailand. We are especially honored to
publish an autobiographical essay by Gabriel
Bol Deng, a young Dinka dancer who
escaped from the civil war in Sudan. Essays
by Laura Marcus and Bill Westerman, speakers
at the 2005 New York Folklore Society
Folk Arts Forum on Immigrant/Refugee
Issues, underscore the needs of new immigrant
and refugee communities. I know our
readers will also find inspiration in the account
written by public folklorist Kay Turner
and her colleague Nicole Macotsis, who
work with immigrant groups living in New
This issue presents to our readers some
of the issues at stake for folklorists working
with refugee and immigrant communities.
The next issue of Voices will include a new
section, “Artist Profiles,” which will showcase
the work of individual folk artists. I urge
you, the reader, to submit your interviews
and biographies of the folk artists with
whom you are currently working.
Felicia Faye McMahon, Ph.D.
New York Folklore Society
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