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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Lineage Organisation of the Tallensi Compound: The Social Logic of Domestic Space in Northern Ghana
Author:Gabrilopoulos, Nick
Year:2002
Periodical:Africa: Journal of the International African Institute
Volume:72
Issue:2
Pages:221-244
Language:English
Geographic term:Ghana
Subjects:Tallensi
kinship
dwellings
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Architecture and the Arts
Link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/3556989
Abstract:Houses frequently embody culturally specific principles of social organization. In this article Tallensi compounds in the Upper East Region of Ghana are examined in terms of compound layout and the kinship relations of their occupants. By comparing the patrilineal descent patterns of occupants with the topological organization of multi-courtyard compounds, it is proposed that there is a correlation between these two variables. Further multidimensional scaling analysis shows that proximity in kinship space is reflected in proximate living arrangements. For students of material culture, this investigation demonstrates that lineage solidarity and politics can be played out in architectural form on the micro-scale of the domestic scene. From the standpoint of ethnoarchaeology, the processes governing the social logic of compound design can also assist archaeologists in interpreting house features in the remains of similarly constituted settlements. Bibliogr., sum. in English and French.
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