Article Review on Ashanti Tribe


The article is written by April West from the and has the title “Ashanti People.” Precisely, the article talks about a Ghanaian tribe called the Ashanti. It provides the readers with a detailed explanation of the history and culture of the Ashanti people that entails marriage, government, religion, art and craft of the Ashanti tribe.

The History and Culture

The Ashanti people are found in Central parts of Ghana, and they are the dominant ethnic group among the Akans (West n.p). The Ashanti people highly regard the family the mother’s clan. They believe that when a child is born, he/she inherits the soul (ntoro) of the father and flesh and blood (mogya) from the mother (West n.p). In this case, the child will be more closely related to the clan of the mother. They practice an extended family, and the oldest brother is always the head of the household. At a young age usually eight or nine, boys engage in a training program led by their fathers. On the other hand, the mother’s brother is responsible for teaching boys on how to use the talking drums. However, the father is the one who pay the school fees. The Ashanti people use the talking drums in ceremonies; spread the news in the village and as a tool to learn the Ashanti language. The girls’ role is to cook and keep the house, and their mothers teach them all these skills.

Marriage is a critical element among the Ashanti, and most men prefer to have large families. Besides, it is important to note that, women will only get married after receiving approval from their parents, and most of them will only meet their husband during the marriage ceremony. Moreover, the Ashanti people have minimal cases of divorce since parents from both sides endure pressure to ensure the marriage keeps on going. The Ashanti government has one king and head a group of paramount chiefs called the Ashanti Confederacy Council (West n.p). The work of the paramount chief is to preside over the Chiefs at the district level. Similarly, we have the Sub-chiefs and the village heads. On the part of their religion, the Ashanti people demonstrate both spiritual and supernatural powers. According to the Ashanti tribe, plants, animals and trees possess souls. Besides, they have a firm belief that there exist, witches, fairies, and forest monsters (West n.p). They practice rites in ceremonies that involve marriage, death, puberty, and birth. The Ashanti people have a golden stool that they consider to be sacred, and they usually protect to the extent that no individual has ever sat on it, and it should not touch the ground.

The Ashanti people are artists, and they have a variety of collections that depict their artworks. Initially, they use the bark cloth for clothing before they introduced a modern way that involved weaving. In this tribe, men are the once involved in weaving while women engage themselves in picking cotton or spinning materials into threads. The patterns in weaving portray various things that might include social status or sex (West n.p). On the other hand, mothers teach their daughters pottery skills. Some of the art and craft items the Ashanti tribe produce include the Ashanti stools and Kente cloth. The Ashanti stool symbolizes the nationhood, and it is only taken outside during the grand occasions. In situations when the safety of the stool is threatened, the Ashanti people always come out and make sacrifices to defend it. For instance, in 1896, the Ashanti people preferred to lose their King, Prempeh I to losing their Golden Stool. Concerning the Kente Cloths, they were hand-woven and meant for the Kings. They are of various colors, design, and sizes and only worn on special social and religious occasions. Other than just being a cloth, Kente depicts a visual representation of the various Ashanti elements that include history, philosophy, politics, religion, ethics and moral values, and social code of conduct.


Work Cited

West, April. “Ashanti People.” Ashanti People. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2016. <>.



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