Arhin, Kwame. Political and military roles of Akan women

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Title: Political and military roles of Akan women

Published in: Female and male in West Africa, edited by Christine Oppong

Published By: Female and male in West Africa, edited by Christine Oppong London: Allen & Unwin, 1983. 91-98 p.

By line: Kwame Arhin

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: HRAF, 2000. Computer File

Culture: Akan (FE12)

Subjects: Status, role, and prestige (554); Clans (614); Towns (632); Chief executive (643); Military organization (701); Gender roles and issues (890);

Abstract: In this article, Arhin discusses the political and associated military organization of the Akan and women’s roles within them. Arhin writes that ‘Female stools complemented the hierarchy of male stools.’ Women had a place in the village and town councils and participated in legislative and judicial processes. The chief’s wife, OHEMMA, had her own oath, court, and spokesman. She was also the foremost authority on genealogies and therefore played a major role in chiefly succession. Political marriage was an important strategy in uniting the Asante empire. Women played a supportive role in war, encouraging their men on by performing dances and songs behind the lines. One Asante heroine precipitated the 1900 British siege of Kumasi by defying the British governor’s demand to take the Golden Stool.

Document Number: 43

Document ID: fe12-043

Document Type: Essay

Language: English

Note: For bibliographical references see source 56: Anonymous

Field Date: Not Specified

Evaluation: Social Scientist-4,5

Analyst: Ian Skoggard ;1999

Coverage Date: 1700-1900

Coverage Place: Ghana

LCSH: Akan (African people)

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