Lullaby as Cultural Memory Transmitter

Ugurlu E. K.

MILLI FOLKLOR, no.102, pp.43-52, 2014 (AHCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: Issue: 102
  • Publication Date: 2014
  • Journal Name: MILLI FOLKLOR
  • Journal Indexes: Arts and Humanities Citation Index (AHCI), Scopus, TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.43-52
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: No


Lullabies are melodious dixits which help babies to sleep. Lullabies are the products of their own verbal culture. These melodious dixits forms can generally vary from one another and doesn't include precise rules. For this reason, from a stylistics point of view the lullaby is one of the most independent verbal cultural product in freestanding form. Yet, what we should concern with lullabies is what they tell us rather than their form. Lullabies are generally sung by women. When a woman expresses her own feelings and thought via lullabies, she also transfers her community's basic features to baby. Within this context, lullabies are not only folk songs for putting babies to sleep but also base of posterity which enables to reflect community's values. Identity formulation which is essential for the cross-generational cultural persistence takes place through memory. The behavioral imitation of cultural memory is a transmission of meaning which comprises communication with other people and a recall through materials. Cultural memory, which makes use of tradition and communication, provides persistence and continuity of identity. Components that enable the cultural continuity, such as birth, circumcision, military service, wedding, practices and perceptions about death, choice of profession, eating, clothing, household, elements of material culture and education, are transferred to future through lullabies. In this way, lullabies, which are transmitters of cultural memory, are used to identify materials to be employed in the cultural pattern analysis. This study intends to investigate the feature of 'cultural memory transmission' of lullabies through identification of cultural aspect used in the lullabies of the cultural tradition of the Turkish World such as nourishment, clothing, sheltering, aspect of material culture and education.