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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The transformation of European forts, castles and flags into local Fante 'asafo' iconography
Author:Labi, Kwame A.ISNI
Year:2006
Periodical:Research Review (ISSN 0855-4412)
Volume:22
Issue:1
Pages:83-98
Language:English
Notes:biblio. refs.
Geographic terms:Ghana
West Africa
Subjects:visual arts
Fanti
warriors
symbols of power
culture contact
Art, Architecture, Music, Drama
Fanti (African people)
art
material culture
imperialism
Abstract:The Fante of Ghana organize their agnatic groups into so-called 'asafo' (ward organizations) for the purpose of defence. European symbols of military power, political authority, economic strength, technology and trade, such as forts and castles, cannons and ships, were often incorporated in the traditional art of Fante 'asafo' companies, to express the 'asafo' world view, beliefs and philosophy. There are sociohistoric and cultural aspects to this. An analysis of the subject matter, the content of the foreign symbols and the themes incorporated in two principal 'asafo' art forms - 'posuban' (multicoloured monuments) and 'frankaa' (flags) - and their local explanations, reveals the meanings given to them. The period and circumstances in which 'asafo' monuments and flags are used become the grounds for negotiating their meaning and appreciation. A fluid interpretation of 'asafo' art forms includes an examination of their ownership and use at a particular time and place. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract, edited]
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