Textiles in Ghana
Textiles in Ghana

This free course is available to start right now. Review the full course description and key learning outcomes and create an account and enrol if you want a free statement of participation.

Free course

Textiles in Ghana

4.3 The functions of adinkra

Activity 14

Once you’ve watched the video, make a few notes on what you learnt about the functions of adinkra.

Download this video clip.
Skip transcript: What are the functions of Adinkra?

Transcript: What are the functions of Adinkra?

Gabriel
This is a small cloth for a female. You wear it in this way. They open their legs and put the cloth back, to cover their body in this way. And the other one for the blouse, and the other one for the top. That’s for the female.
And the man, the man can wear, the man can wear ……, that is black cloth. For example, this is a mourning cloth. Just open it, and put your left hand in and bring the hand, right hand out, fold it up to your arms and tie it to you. Now you can go - wherever you want to go!
(SINGING AND MUSIC AT FUNERAL Duration)
Catherine (VO)
Dark red and black cloths are worn for funerals, especially Adinkra cloths, printed with symbols chosen for their meaning.
Gabriel (VO)
The head of the family must be in the red, then others in the family who ….., who also wear. Only to show to people that they have lost an important person, we have suffered a loss.
All others can wear black.
Catherine (VO)
Modern, printed cloths are also used for solemn occasions. Here, the ram’s horn symbol has been interpreted for Christian use.
Man
This is a small family, who are Catholic, and we have lost our beloved father on the 29th of November. So, we buried him yesterday and came for the Thanksgiving at the Cathedral.
Catherine
Can you tell us why you chose that particular Adinkra print?
Man
It looks like a sign of victory, which our father has won on earth here. Because it is only Jesus who brings victory. Therefore, it is a symbol of victory, our father has won on this earth. That’s why the design is like that.
End transcript: What are the functions of Adinkra?
Copy this transcript to the clipboard
Print this transcript
What are the functions of Adinkra?
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).
A216_2

Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has over 40 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to university level study, find out more about the types of qualifications we offer, including our entry level Access courses and Certificates.

Not ready for University study then browse over 900 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus