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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:S. W. D. K. Gandah (1927-2001): intellectual and historian from northern Ghana
Author:Lentz, CarolaISNI
Periodical:Africa: Journal of the International African Institute (ISSN 0001-9720)
Geographic term:Ghana
Subjects:traditional rulers
local history
biographies (form)
About persons:S.W.D.K. Gandah (1927-2001)ISNI
Birifu Naa Gandah (ca 1872-1950)
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/23240214
Abstract:S.W.D.K. (or Kumbonoh) Gandah (1927-2001) was the son of an influential chief and witnessed first-hand the way the conflicts, pressures and transformations of colonial rule played out on the ground in northern Ghana. Belonging to the first generation of educated northerners, he put his literary and intellectual attainments to original use throughout his life. In addition to an autobiography (The Silent Rebel), he wrote a history of his father (Gandah-yir), extracts from which are published in this issue of 'Africa' (p. 356-367). This introduction discusses the author's development as a writer and local historian. It analyses his ambivalent perspective on Chief Gandah's life, as loyal son, but also critic of many aspects of village life - a perspective typical of a first generation of indigenous intellectuals who embodied both a traditional upbringing and new values instilled through Western education. The article looks at Kumbonoh's reflections on the task that he set himself for his Gandah-yir manuscript, namely reconciling oral tradition, local memories, and written history in an attempt to produce a historical account not only for his immediate family and the wider Dagara community, but for a broader readership as well. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]