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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Disguising the pain of remembering in Akwapim
Author:Gilbert, MichelleISNI
Periodical:Africa: Journal of the International African Institute (ISSN 0001-9720)
Geographic term:Ghana
Subjects:Akwapim polity
personal names
royal insignia
External links:https://doi.org/10.3366/afr.2010.0304
Abstract:This essay concerns memory, ritual, and the deliberate obscurity of reference. In Akropong, capital of the small kingdom of Akwapim, southeastern Ghana, memories of a sorrowful or conflict-laden past are accessed by verbal and visual strategies that are allusive in nature. The name-response that a mother gives to her child, sites marked in the ritual landscape and a chief's gold-covered linguist staff with a carved narrative image are all sites of memory pertaining to the identity of persons or groups. Formalized, repetitive and felt to be obligatory, they commemorate continuity with a dangerous and/or painful past and simultaneously deny it. At issue are memories of past events - personal catastrophes, violent deaths and political disruptions - whose ramifications must still be confronted. The essay describes two cases in particular - children's names, and ritual sites and regalia. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]