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Anassa Kata : No it’s Not a Cult

Anassa Kata
(Bryn Mawr College Cheer)

Anassa kata, kalo kale,
Ia ia ia Nike,
Bryn Mawr, Bryn Mawr, Bryn Mawr!

Queen, descend,
I invoke you, fair one.
Hail, hail, hail, victory,
Bryn Mawr, Bryn Mawr, Bryn Mawr!


When I first heard this chant at Bryn Mawr I thought to myself, “What if my mommy finds out that I have joined a cult?” Whenever you begin to hear the cheer you join in screaming at the top of your lungs, and if you’re feeling it, pump your fists in the air. I was worried, but it seemed that the chants were for moments of glorification, happiness, and it was just a way to express how proud you were to be a Mawrter, or how proud you were of some one else. If you are not a senior you cannot start the chant, but it is still a beautiful thing. Now that I am a senior, it is an honor to be able to start this chant.

I start it when I see a first-year do something I am proud of, such as managing to complete an assignment that they thought they couldn’t before. The chant could be started at a show where we are happy it finished well. Someone could have accidentally broken a plate in the dining hall, and we could Anass them. I have even gone to events in Boston, six hours from Philadelphia and have heard Mawters who have come together Anass. It means something powerful, a unification like no other, and I am sure that when I leave this school to begin my official adult livelihood, I too will miss the Anass.

There are times/There will be times when I want to scream it out loud, but then will turn around to realize that I am in AJ Wright, TJ Maxx or Target and cannot. Otherwise people would think I’m crazy. Who knows? They might even refer me to a doctor. I cannot scream this out loud when I leave Bryn Mawr, where most  people won’t know the power of this chant, and no one will surround me. It goes deeper than being some cultish form of words. This chant, as you will hopefully see once you take a closer look at Bryn Mawr, is a way of expression that insists that you in someway are connected to the community around you, and that my friend, is what the world is missing. This college is like a little world within itself, and it is on the right path. People who have no connections to each other find themselves coming together and screaming this chant in unison. That is the beauty of it, and it’s too bad the world does not reflect that very aspect of the chant: unity across difference.



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  3. Totally loved reading ur thots 🙂

  4. Thank you for this. Brings back most excellent memories…
    Class ’91

  5. I hear you about the wanting to chant Anass at random moments and realizing it’s not appropriate. The feeling never really leaves you. One of my favorite moments at my own wedding (and I’ve heard this at many a Mawrter wedding) is when the BMC girls huddled and startle all the guests by Anassing. Love it! And miss the Mawr terribly!