The Year of the Griot is a multifaceted project of performance, learning, teaching and sharing. The impetus for the idea was a single epiphany: That the knowledge we need to confront every problem, every misunderstanding, every bundle of confusion, is right there in front of us.  They lie in the histories, the narratives, and the cultural knowledge  of those around us.  Now, all we have to do is start talking.  This is also a dynamic, expanding movement. The idea is that you (yes, you) join us by heading into your community and answering the call of the Griotdom.  No matter your culture, background, or affiliation, your folks need  need you, and you need them.  Listen. Document. Share. Do your thing where folks can see it, or hear it - taste it or smell it.  Feel it.

Let’s see if we can change the world in One Year.

About The Year of the Griot


Join The List:

Drop us an email at yearofthegriot(at)gmail(dot)com and we’ll keep you up to date with an occasional email.  Interested in just one project? Simply add “Sunday”, “Color”, “Aural” or “Synergy” to the subject line. You can also follow us on Twitter

The Organization:

More to come.

Year of the Griot Screenings celebrate of the work of great filmmakers and performers and facilitate community connections.  We respect that great obstacles were overcome to get these works to the screen.  In this spirit, please join us in maintaining this guidelines:

-Screenings of classic works are for Community Enrichment & Educational Purposes ONLY.

-Screenings of classic works are always FREE & OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.                                                                                              

-Use of recording devices of any kind (including still cameras) is STRICTLY PROHIBITED.

-We will always work to provide you with a historical background and context for films.

-We appreciate your cooperation in maintaining a quiet, comfortable, and respectful environment during screenings, discussions, and guest presentations.                    

-Families are important to Year of the Griot.  We will consistently strive to provide information about appropriateness, ratings, and content when applicable on this site.

*Occasionally, Year of the Griot may work with independent filmmakers to screen current works.  The format and setups for these events may differ.  Please check the site for info.

Important Screening Guidelines:

The meaning of “The Year”: Cultures worldwide celebrate the harvest. In the U.S. this happens in “Autumn”. Regardless of title, It’s a time when folks can reap the harvest of their past labors, come together, and give thanks.  It’s also a time for looking ahead.  Soon enough, new seeds must be planted and nurtured in preparation for the future.                                           

Definition of “Griot”: In a great number of West African cultures, Griots - trained men and women who commit to the task of being the human conveyors of the history of their people over a long line of centuries, are essential to the cultural survival of their communities. They memorize this history and convey it as oral history dictations, poetry, and song. Adaptive and wise, Griots were the original multi-disciplinary scholars, serving as historians, artists, priests, counselors and mediators to each new generation.  The Year of the Griot project aims to encourage each of us to revive the spirit of the Griot in our own communities.                                                                                          

The Project: Every community, no matter its story, needs to be reminded of it’s best self. Until Autumn 2010, we can lead the charge. Inspired by the history of the Harvest Year and The Griot, we can each start today, merging our own unique gifts as individuals in an effort to learn, teach, share, serve - and celebrate our histories together. 

How are you manifesting your Inner Griot?  Let us know at the Facebook Page.  Of course, you can always drop us an email with questions or comments at info(at)

Let Us Know: 

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