Amir Sowan (Amir Pays His Respect): A Wayang Golek Menak Rod Puppet Play (Excerpts)

Wayang golek menak or “menak” rod puppet theatre is a form of traditional puppetry practiced in central Java, including Yogyakarta. It most likely originated in the nineteenth century, developing out of earlier puppet forms. The word menak refers in Javanese to the heroic and amorous adventures of the Islamic hero Amir Hamza, also known as Amir Ambyah or Wong Agung Menak (“Big Man” Menak), who is the uncle of the Prophet Muhammad w. The menak story cycle forms the core repertoire of wayang golek menak as a theatrical genre.

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