This ethnography traces Ewe ritual life across the praxis of a northern medicine shrine that came to the Volta Region in the 1920s. These strangers in a southern land were part of a larger movement of “occult economies” that flowed from the savanna regions literally in the bags of ritual entrepreneurs. Although these northern gods were strangers (their otherness a source of their power), their ways were not unfamiliar to the Ewe people. While virtually all the other northern shrines that came to Ewe country during this period eventually withered away, the Brekete shrine not only survived but flourished, becoming one of the dominant ritual scapes along the Guinea Coast. The complex movement of these northern shrines has engaged the ethnographic and historical imagination of Africanists for generations, from virtually the beginnings of anthropology in Ghana. Dance in Africa celebrates lives, commemorates death, consummates alliances, is part of the everyday lifeworld. Much else happens—sacrifice and libation, divination and prayer, sometimes even possession—when music is largely absent.
Chicago Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.
To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.