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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Fathering, Mothering and Making Sense of Ntamoba: Reflections on the Economy of Child-Rearing in Colonial Asante
Author:Allman, Jean M.
Periodical:Africa: Journal of the International African Institute
Geographic terms:Ghana
Great Britain
child rearing
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
History and Exploration
Women's Issues
Cultural Roles
Family Life
Women and Their Children
Sex Roles
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/1161446
Abstract:This article explores the changing dynamics of childrearing in colonial Asante (Ghana) through the problematic concept of 'ntamoba'. In the historical record, and in popular memory, 'ntamoba' has survived in a number of forms - as a marriage payment, as a rite connected with birthing and naming, and as an indemnification paid to a father by a child's matrikin to signify the termination of a father's rights in that child. The article seeks to historicize and explain the multiplicity of meanings and the eventual disappearance of 'ntamoba' by examining the ways in which a father's rights of use in his children were transformed into rights of ownership. This transformation occurred at a time when the economic cost of rearing children, particularly as a result of school fees, was rising dramatically. The article gives prominence to time and social place/status as key variables in its investigation, demonstrating how the disappearance of 'ntamoba' was connected with the conflation of subordinate social categories in 20th-century Asante. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and French.