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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Sacred Terrain: Religion, Politics, and Place in the History of Anloga (Ghana)
Author:Greene, Sandra E.
Periodical:International Journal of African Historical Studies
Geographic term:Ghana
urban history
History and Exploration
Religion and Witchcraft
Politics and Government
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/221544
Abstract:The significance of place as symbol in the political and religious history of Africa is the primary concern of this article. By focusing on the history of an area in the town of Anloga (Ghana) known variously as Esreme, Nyikowe or Nyigblawe but called Gbakute here, the author traces the way in which this location became associated with specific meanings over a period of more than two hundred years. During the early 18th century, it was believed to be the place where the spirits of executed criminals roamed. By the late 18th century, it also served as the site for the worship of Anlo's most powerful god, Togbui Nyigbla. During the colonial period, the citizens of Anloga used the grove that stood on the site as a place to resist British colonial rule. The British responded by razing the grove and erecting a police station in its place. Thereafter the site no longer evoked immediate and tangible feelings of fear and dread. But when the author interviewed some of the oldest men and women in the community in 1996, it was clear from their accounts that the grove still functions as a symbolically powerful site. This is also suggested by events in 1987 and 1996, when conflicts erupted between the Church of Pentecost and the traditional authorities of Anloga. Notes, ref.