DJENNE — Boys will be boys. Men will be men. Do these simple statements still hold for modern African society? Personally I think not.

It appears that in the shift from traditional to modern, many facets of African cultures have long begun their eulogy for manhood. I would hope only prematurely. Yet by all accounts, the way that boys were boys and men were men seems to be under threat in modern African society.

For the most part, there is no role of men and boys but to suppress their natural inclinations for manhood. Centuries ago this assertion would go unchallenged but today—my, how things have changed—I must clarify what I mean by natural inclinations, or otherwise risk alienating those who have been conditioned to think that they do not exist.

Biologically boys and girls, men and women are different. This does not negate the fact that they are both human beings who breathe in oxygen, pump blood to their organs, and have high intellectual capabilities. Biology does, however, necessitate that on the whole, with room for few exceptions, men have more testosterone and women have more estrogen.

Understandably with this discussion of hormones, innate chemical compositions ordained by nature, is where the rebels depart. To them, such concepts—testosterone, hormones, estrogen—are constraining. They are the children who despised school uniforms, plain yellow shirts and green skirts or trousers, contesting that homogenized dress concealed and compromised their individuality.

So do some believe we misinterpret the biological claims surrounding sex. Those disputants fire off numerous allegations. That we bind men and women to opposite poles with our densely dichotomous brains. That we construct ideological and physical milieus that rarely overlap. That we assign characteristics to each and restrain movement to and fro, by some omnipresent laws which like gravity or ether pull or push around non-consenting adults. That we censure deviant women and men.

Such rants against biology are common yet none speak directly to the fact that on average men have more testosterone and women, more estrogen.

In my personal experience rarely if ever have I heard women engaging in heated conversation about nuclear weapons and the bomb. Call me sexist for saying so but this is entirely my experience. In fact, I bid you to peruse your social media or alternative media feeds, if only to assess how often women compared to men discuss topics like warfare.

Again this is not to say that women should not join a military, if they so please. Individually men and women have the liberty to pursue their self-proscribed dreams. Absolutely nowhere does biology state that women and men cannot both be astute leaders of their communities. We admire the vast unparalleled grit and fearlessness of Dahomey’s women warriors; we admire the bravery of Queenmother Yaa Asantewaa, Queen Kandake, and all the rest.

Though why is it that the pursuit of weaponry and combat, involvement in war talk and action are more common historically, presently, and perhaps forever so among men than women? Why is it that generally men would rather plan a war than a wedding? And generally women would opt for the reverse?

Some would say we are culturally molded in these socially acceptable gender roles. Others would say that biology, testosterone, and other characteristics responsible for differences in muscle mass and mentality, forge a greater stake in our dispositions.

Acknowledging these biological differences between the majority of men and the majority of women, I am inclined to ask whether there is a place in modern African society for testosterone-driven men, the hard men who sat at the dinner table with Narmer Amenuti?

By observation, it appears that modern African society unwisely advises men to throw their testosterone out the window. Of course this attitude is conditioned by a number of factors; the lack of a profuse writing culture, too little self-reflection within African culture, and overwhelming outside influences are the primary determinants.

Traditional men were brought up to take whatever they want, so long as they protect their families. Conventional rites de passage from boys to men involved exploits from embarking upon an overnight fishing trip to wrestling a crocodile.

Nowadays men are not men as they were in traditional societies. Mission schools and modern religions indoctrinate men in ways that are oppositional to traditional beliefs.

The practices of foreign religions commixed with foreign mission schooling enjoin men to be tolerant, to be receptive to others unconditionally, to respect even those who try to harm them, and to be docile in the presence of danger. One immensely popular world religion, Christianity, notoriously tells men to turn the other cheek.

Now when boys fight in school they are harshly reprimanded. The old adage that boys will be boys has given way to labeling disciplinary problems, to handing out suspensions and expulsions and, for African Americans, to writing up citations and sentencing incarcerations.

We are told that men should not settle their differences by fighting. An African man expressing characteristics of manhood, exhibiting corporeal power, is looked down upon.

We are told men should not display brawn, strength, physique, or aggression for any purpose, except of course on the football pitch. And even then, men should not be men but keep their testosterone under control, for fear of a yellow or red card. We should not even witness men rip their shirts off and show their muscles. To display such power, what an offense!

Even in sport where men should be men, they are penalized if they show too much physicality or get too upset. We are told to leave boxing in Bukom. We are told that manhood should maintain certain boundaries.

We are told that only violent men act in ways that traditional men would. We are told that the actions of traditional men—the hunting, the fishing, the rites de passage—should be viewed as primitive. We are told that machines should accomplish the acts that traditional men performed.

Modern African society has medicalized the customs of manhood. We are told that men who desire to use their natural strength are violent or angry. We are told they should be caged and contained. Domesticated.

Banishing biology, modern African society invites men to keep homes with paved compounds. It invites men to give up fishing and farming, give up sweat for sustenance, and rather purchase food through a credit card swipe at an air-conditioned multinational supermarket.

Modern society encourages African American men to be raised by single mothers rather than by families with fathers. It invites men to visit the barbershop rather than yield a blade. It invites men to lick ice cream cones, to indulge in the pursuits of pleasure and to wince in the thought of pain.

Where has this doctrine, this evasion of traditional manhood, gotten Africa today?

Largely we fail to read and write our own traditional histories. We fail to record and thereby validate our customs of manhood and how they functioned in protecting and supporting our livelihoods.

Instead we accept foreign ideologies about our manhood. Foolishly we believe others would inform us best about our manhood, others who preach of gender parity in public and practice rites of traditional manhood in private.

While we trust in rhetoric parroting that men and women are the same, despite their obvious biological differences, we unwittingly rid our society of hard men. During the 1960s, Kwame Nkrumah had some 150,000 Ghanaian soldiers. Today Ghana can barely boast of a strong 13,500 active soldiers. Where have all the men gone? Does this explain why African nations have become vulnerable and are less able to protect themselves than decades and centuries before?

But meanwhile the number of hard men in other societies has risen significantly. Let’s do the math.

If there are 52 going on 54 USACommand bases in Africa, one for each country, how many US soldiers are stationed there? Not to mention how many US soldiers are occupying other nations like the 174 military bases with more than 50,000 soldiers in Germany alone, plus the number of soldiers housed in their own country. But in comparison Africans feel less pressure to have a formidable military. Why the discrepancy?

While foreign nations spread ideologies about gender equality and profess that men and women are equal, they secretly hone their manhood behind the walls of elite boarding schools, within military academies and police units, and in clandestine cults.

Testosterone-driven manhood is still cultivated in places where world dominators are bred. Though these loci of manhood are invisible to the unassuming. Manhood is preciously guarded so that the many, the powerless, will be far removed from its reaches while the few who hold onto its clutches, the powerful, can exercise complete control over others.

Is biology now defying us? Don’t modern African men still possess testosterone, an estimated seven or eight times greater that their female counterparts? Where is the outlet for that testosterone? Where does the modern test of manhood lie?

Somehow we have come to take manhood so lightly and to dismiss its everyday practices. People mock traditional rites of manhood and express that there is a declining significance of hard men.

But something tells me that maybe we wouldn’t have to #BringBackOurGirls from the horrors of Boko Haram if there were enough hard men to protect them. Maybe if manhood wasn’t laughed about in modern society, we wouldn’t be complaining about how foreign countries constantly pillage our minerals, energy, metals, food, and resources.

The declining importance of manhood in Africa among the elite and the common man is directly related to the declining significance of Africans’ participation in world affairs.

Manhood must reassert its value in African culture. Boys must be boys and men must be men. The sweet songs of hard men must reverse their impending demise.

60 COMMENTS

  1. Very well done! So much challenging rich food of Truthquest hard talkinging for critical Thought and emancipatory Positive Action from our brilliant Griot-Sister Amara Jali! Now, Brothers and also Sisters, let us stop cowardly beating about the bush and have the real conversations of true Afrikan Black Power Manhood and Womanhood to galvanize into real Positive Action our much trumpeted Pan-Afrikan Revolution!

  2. Amara Jali, at her best. Splendent, however unnerving! This is a must-read for all, and feminists alike. Amara is one of the few women from Mali who is not afraid to look feminism in the eye and debate it with the ease of logic and diction. She is not afraid of a candid debate.
    She argues that there’s such a thing as a “declining significance of manhood” in Africa. Those who recognize the devolution are those who comprehend what it used to be.
    Again, Amara has delivered a stunning piece and has opened up to a fierce debate.

  3. It only happens when you call your ancestors primitive, devil worshippers and you adopt someone else’s religion.

  4. You are correct Grace Ayensu Danquah. We have allowed ourselves to be defined – our own heritage is “Evil”. How do people accept this line of humiliation daily?

    • We do daily without questioning. I remember a very popular song we use to sing in Sunday school ” yen nananom som Abosom na hen d3 y3 be som Yahowa.” Talk about indoctrination from the start!!!!! This kind of thinking is still very prevalent. Hence no African solutions to African problems.. Just masa’s half-baked solutions

    • Aaaaaaah!! Thank you! Ridiculous: “yen nananom som Abosom.” I am so angry sometimes when I hear our own children sing these songs. It’s maddening.

  5. Like Grace Ayensu Danquah said: People are still walking about singing and teaching their children to sing “yen nananom som Abosom, na hen d3 y3 be som Yahowa.”

    Translation: “Our Ancestors worshiped Devils, but as for us, we shall worship Yehowah”. Many have no idea that Yehowah too is an “Abosom.” Until we unlearn these things, we cannot even understand the Africa we live in let alone African manhood.

    Imagine the educated Christian lecturing us about manhood? Imagine them lecturing us about feminism. If only you knew this is how they think: Our Ancestors worshiped Devils. Yeah, right!

    Thanks Grace Ayensu Danquah, for opening my eyes to that little unnerving song!

    But this article is stunning! To say the very least. I am floored.

  6. It seems, with increasing evidence, that western forms of thought are an obscurantism. The ruling regime – Mission School Education – sustains itself through a combination of fear, prejudice and religious obscurantism. It is from these facts that western ideology has arisen to wipe out all other in Africa and even beyond.

    Manhood is an important component of African society, as Womanhood is – there was a fierce sense of a dynamic division of labor as society evolved – Atiga. But division of labor was a vital part of the structure of African culture. Hence the curing of African manhood has undoubtedly tilted the scale. We watch and sit idly by as our resources get scooped away by the so-called educated (most of whom are coons and rapscallions) in tow with the western corporation.

    Instead of succumbing to these forces of western obscurantism, incompetence and repression of African paradigms of thought and expression, the truly African intellectual must provide a template for modernist thinkers across the continent to start afresh from the foundation of a traditional Africa. So, there’s a way out of this mess.

    Whatever our catecheses may be, our culture must, nonetheless, move forward into text and paper. We must, at a full throttle, embark on a re-education of our peoples in our collective languages in order that we might forestall the fast “declining significance of manhood” and “Womanhood” in African culture.

    • Emphasis on culture is what I’m sold on. The spirit of togetherness is strongest in culture. Borrowed wester religion makes us judgemental and prejudicial. We must be bound by culture and everything else is secondary and probably irrelevant. To belong by culture, not religion as most folks have been programmed to.

    • It is not even clear what the author means by obscurantism.

      Talk of “paradigms of thought” is simply confused and illogical.

    • I used “obscurantism” in the way that Christianity and the advent of the Mission School in my village deliberately prevented the facts [of African cultural practices] or the full details of African Tradition from becoming known to its students [who were African]. If, of course, you know of another definition for this word [obscurantism], please let us know.

      As for putting the simple phrase paradigms of thought in quotation marks, I adore your pecksniffian attitude. You do believe in schools of thought in Europe but you don’t believe that in Africa, before the European arrived here with his white Jesus, we also had our own schools of thought (not just one, two or three) until the Missionary, together with his canon-tooting government from Europe, ensured [through obscurantism] that those schools were marched to their near extinction.

      Paradigms of thought simply mean African patterns of thought, or models of thought and expression, or better yet, worldviews which have been hitherto repressed through colonialism, neocolonialism and now through neoliberal obscurantism.

      Have I answered your questions?

    • Your thesis is clearer. I thank you for the clarification. You are a poet, I think and you write as a poet.

    • If we are truly stellar,supermen ,as you insist,why is our lot not the best Narmer. Why for example are we still farming with hoe,cudgels and cutlasses.,hunting with bows and arrows and importing common match boxes. Mind you I am an Africa mists but perhaps a a realist. I know we have built empires before. Why can’t our generation replicate those past grandeur? We can comfortably accept others have out paced us in the progressive race and not suffocate over the idea.

      • I must say tho. That Narmer Amenuti. You is a ruff nut to crack. A truly revolutionary relentless thinker and a great communicator. Keep it up.

      • Marcus Aurelious I wonder what your definition is of progress if you say that “others have out paced us in the progressive race.” I see your point that we can improve our technology somewhat. But how much improvement do you get before you start to endanger your own surrounding environment? Farming with hoes and cutlasses does not upset the balance in the world but farming with gas-powered heavy machinery does cause a remarkable amount of pollution magnified by how many people, towns, cities, and countries use such methods. Let’s not get into the waste byproducts that these “advances in technology” cause. You rightly critique our current generations for not having made any improvements upon the past. I’m just wondering how much before it is actually disintegration in disguise.

      • Adena Magnum you and I know that we…human race ..have to eat to survive. Not upsetting the ecology to survive is not the point and there are more sustainable ways of farming that preserve the environment which a greater part of the advanced World..Europe,Japan,even Eastern Europe are practicing. Is it not an added,rather ‘ugly’ indictment that majority of African countries can’t feed our own selves today and have to import over 80% of our food? We can pitch some our philosophies of living but we are certainly,or bluntly lost the race of progress.

      • Still I think we have to evaluate our definition of progress. And I do not think African countries import large percentages of food for lack of knowledge of how to farm or for lack of technology. It’s also a problem of leadership, an area which I think the countries you mentioned have identified and tackled.

  7. Western feminism, the first wave, I have no problem with whatsoever. That was purely about legal rights for women to vote and do some basic stuff that everyone is entitled to.

    But the second wave, beside the fact that it partly a pure exploitation of women, it started to creates human right abuse problems. For example, how do you tell women to stand naked next to Rolls Royce and convince her that this means she is emancipated or she is fighting for her rights? pure exploitation if you ask me.
    Many American elite gave in to the fact that at height of WWII, the industries producing weapons needed more work force for weapon production so they made it sexy for a woman to labor harder than her body would biologically allow. And if you protested u were a women oppressor, or women can talk for themselves so you are not needed. In fact it sounds like scam to me. I can protest for Child rights but if I talk about women’s rights I am a chauvinist thinks he owns women. So what now?

    The current wave is sick. Men are turning women for simple issues they need counseling for. As the writer said, in no corner of this world will women preoccupy themselves with discussions on nuclear weapons. But you just have to notice it and you are labelled sexist. Its as if you are the one forbidding them for discussing it.

  8. Brilliant essay! Unparalleled bravery of thought and expression, this Amara Jali, is a true griot – unafraid of the backlash that this essay might bring from the distant quarters of imperialist ideology in Africa.

    Manhood must be encouraged in the same vein as Womanhood must be respected at all costs. The fact that the Ghana Armed Forces only now can boast of 13,500 active soldiers is exactly what I mean by neo-imperialism. What can you do with 13,500 soldiers against a marauding advance of USACOMMAND (what idiots in Africa call AFRICOM)?

    This is exactly the declining significance of manhood that Amara has pointed to. If today’s African man does not feel a need to defend and protect his land against USACOMMAND, MONSANTO, GMOs, IMF, WORLD BANK, OBAMA, and the rest, then he’s no longer the man he used to be! Period!

  9. Everything is book knowledge no common sense , no harden up training , not allowing boys grow up as boys, they can’t survive anywhere else apart from their comfort zones , I hope my son will be brought up better knowing better

    • If they don’t see it in a book, it is not knowledge. The idiocy is pervasive. This is why the Bible has come to occupy so much intellectual space in Africa. Nowhere else is that nonsense acceptable. Kwasia biara writes something on paper and African students chew and pour! Aden? We gyimi anaa?

    • But my brother, it starts with the Teachers and the Professors in our high schools and colleges. The greatest starting line disadvantage that precolonial Africa had in many places (not all) is the fact that their collection of knowledge and wisdome was not book-cased. The moment the Bible and the Quran arrived, they became the Reference Books. Add to this the nonsense of intellectualism captured in paperback and our so-called educated class parrot every bit of it. They can no longer stop to think: What am I reading? Why am I reading this? No! They go one to parrot it and the white people pat them on the back – Ayeekoo — and give them dollars to feel better.

    • So many professors in our colleges are western educated, which in itself is not necessarily a bad thing, except they bring with them those reference books that do not originate in our cultures. We should be able to start a conversation about manhood, womanhood, or whatever without having to cite someone from outside of our cultures and certainly without having to cite a lengthy religious text.

    • Dade Afre Akufu I am woman, I know exactly what you are talking about , everything is in western concept, so after school how does the African survive in Africa, how would the graduate be useful to his people , how would the land or environment benefits from all that schooling , we come out from schools to sit at home or go into some kind of social vices because we don’t know how to survive , no farming skills, no fishing skills , even the little we learn in school we are told is western knowledge , meaning without foreign influence we were nothing ,

  10. Heeeeeeey hahahaha Amara the Christian Bible says…. when you are slapped from the right hand side turn the other left for extra slaps if possible, in the name of peace

    If you have this kind of theoretical controlling model governing modern African thinking environment, why won’t we loose our manhood.

    Kantian Law state that…..man is bound to behave within the theoretical framework constructed to guide him. Hence with this application the West has succeeded to lock Africa and it potentials with Biblical theory to tame our Manhood.

    Great piece….my sister, you have crucified the paper, Bravo Amara.

    But if this information could make an impact then Christian doctrine in African need to be re-constructed but the question is how?

  11. Someone comes to your house, where your wife (wives) and kids live and says, I will take your resources (what you eat) and give you 5 percent, 10 percent. And you say “yes!” African manhood indeed!

    • I think growing into manhood is not only showing muscles but the use if the brain to protect and fish for what you want.

  12. The Neoliberal Ideas came to Ghana and said, you don’t even need an army – you are wasting money! While they increase their budgets on their military. And then use their military to come to Ghana and set up USACOMMAND (Africom) to ensure the daily looting of our resources. While they are it, they give are manly intellectuals Feminism to run with, so we can forget our manhood.

  13. Where were those who had grown into manhood? Why didn’t they show their manhood to rescue those enslaved?
    With African culture or tradition without reasoning is useless. Religion is not the problem but how religion is understood and practiced. Our manhood must relate to our thinking and reasoning.

  14. Collins Larbi, I don’t think you really understand how Africa was over-run by European governments – it was through trickery and the helping hand of smaller African states who wanted retribution from Asante and Dahomey, say. But that is a lengthy discussion.

  15. If then men and women of African or Ghanaian tradition knew the value of our resources, they would not allow foreigners to take away such valuable resources.

  16. Collins Larbi, we know the value of our resources. We are just not men enough to protect them! We are Christians and our Christian brothers and sisters live in the USA and Europe. Why fight them for a fair price and our fair share?

  17. I don’t believe that being a Christian is the challenge hear. Jesus at the center of Christianity pulled the rod to stop people from misbehaving.

    Knowing the value of our resources is to know how to use them efficiently and profitably. We lack the know-how. We need to reason with our muscle powers (manhood and womanhood).

  18. Collins the issue here is adopting other people’s religion and worshiping their ancestors.. To the neglect and detriment of our culture and traditions.

    • You seem not to get my drift too Grace.
      My point is, before the invasion of the whites, where were we and what were we using our manhood and womanhood for? If we cherished and knew the worth of our traditions, why didn’t we reject theirs but allowed the foreign religion to take hold of us?
      The core mechanism in every facet of life is “reasoning”. The power to use the brain. Whatever religion or tradition and culture you find yourself, if you fail to reason, it will go against you.

      Conscience is a natural gift, out of it common sense is borne.

    • Grace Ayensu Danquah just put so many thoughts in yet a beautifully succinct paragraph. This Sista is a baller paaa!

  19. Brilliant essay. Essentially, if we run with the ideas of others, demonize/abandon our own when we must work at perfecting them and own them, we can only most likely be second best to the originators of those ideas. When you do that, you lose the essence of your manhood or womanhood. Thanks for sharing.

  20. Collins Larbi, you ask a question whose answer took some 300 years to unravel. Grace Ayensu Danquah has done quite a job to capture the essence of the transformation leading up “To the neglect and detriment of our culture and traditions”. The “invasion” of Africa did not happen overnight with a set of European troops. The “invasion” started with the coming of foreign religious ideals, European Christianity a vital part of that “invasion”, the Adoption of Mission Schools and the allied-revolts – through the help of colonial Armies of smaller African States against bigger ones (either to fight oppression or to demand fairer terms of trade). It’s a complicated history and one that needs time to expand upon. You must understand the answers to your questions then are beyond the scope of this essay, however.

    As far as Christianity is concerned, you may appreciate the long history of Christianity in say the Gold Coast. It wasn’t the kind of Christianity you see today – what you see today is a result of a long evolution. For example, in the EP Churches of Trans-Volta Togoland, where Voodoo was a religion of choice for many people, the new Missionaries there begun a campaign in which they technically masked Christianity as a kind of Voodooism – just another Cult. Much of that history is lost through time but many documents still suggest that Ewes, who converted to Christianity, say at the humble beginnings of Missionary work, used to worship their Voodoo Gods in the Church, alongside Jesus. There are also various stories of the fierce opposition of Christianity by various cults.

    With the advancement of European weaponry, together with the expansion of Christian beliefs (the converted Christian African base), the colonialist, through the converted African (and the European educated African) begun to cut their teeth within Africa proper. African Traditional Religions, which had been equal in substance to Christianity, became a target in order that the Colonial Power might yet establish a fuller more holistic control over resource. In addition this was done to set the table straight for the moral basis for slavery and colonialism. Slavery is key – the salvation of the savage in Christian doctrine vital to this effort – to understanding much of the development of Christian doctrines within the flanks of European governments as a way to enslave and dominate the continent and her people through the use of African Mission Mercenaries and Baptized African Christian Emissaries.

    Anyway, this is only a meager attempt to answer your question. But there are many here who know a whole lot to attempt an answer at their convenience. But let us keep the conversation within the scope of the essay.

    • I hope so: the likes of you, Grace Ayensu Danquah, and our wonderful staff of Scribes at Grandmother Africa give me immense hope as well. Thanks!

  21. Well, well, well, I may be too young to know and understand the African culture and tradition then, and today’s.

    I will keep on searching if we have not lost all African traditions and culture to “Christianity”? Lil

    Thank Akosua M. Abeka

    • Collins Larbi, Asante was only defeated in 1909 by an Armed Forces comprising of the British, other Asafos of surrounding States and African Mercenaries from across the continent. Asante [may have] called for Dahomeyan re-enforcement (who were defeated in 1896 by the French) and they refused. This is the only way Asante men and women could have been defeated! The colonization of African did not stem from a World or Continental War! So, you don’t have to look far. Your Traditions are safe. Help us textualize them by going home to grandmother’s village to do some research on Christianity in the village. You will be surprised. Then send us your report. I will be happy to present them to Grandmother Africa’s editorial Board for publication. You will be happier.

  22. Akosua M. Abeka Asante was first defeated by the combination of British, and other southern ethnic groups (Ga, Fante, Akyem, Akwapim, Ada and others) in 1826 Battle of Akatamanso

  23. Akosua M. Abeka The Fourth Anglo-Ashanti War, also known as the “Second Ashanti Expedition”, was brief, lasting only from December 1895 to February 1896. The Ashanti turned down an unofficial offer to become a British protectorate in 1891, extending to 1894. The British also wanted to establish a British resident in Kumasi. The Ashanti King Prempeh refused to surrender his sovereignty. Wanting to keep French and German forces out of Ashanti territory (and its gold), the British were anxious to conquer the Ashanti once and for all. The Ashanti sent a delegation to London offering concessions on its gold, cocoa and rubber trade as well as submission to the crown. The British however had already made its mind up on a military solution, they were on their way, the delegation only returning to Kumasi a few days before the troops marched in. Colonel Sir Francis Scott left Cape Coast with the main expeditionary force of British and West Indian troops, Maxim guns and 75mm artillery in December 1895, and travelling along the remnants of the 1874 road arrived in Kumasi in January 1896. Major Robert Baden-Powell led a native levy of several local tribes in the campaign. The Asantehene directed the Ashanti not to resist, but casualties from sickness among the British troops were high. Soon, Governor William Maxwell arrived in Kumasi as well. Asantehene Agyeman Prempeh was unable or unwilling to pay the 50,000 ounces of gold so was arrested and deposed. He was forced to sign a treaty of protection, and with other Ashanti leaders was sent into exile in the Seychelles.

  24. You are correct. Kweku Darko Ankrah. But Asante was last defeated in 1909. That Asantewaa war represented the final war in the Anglo-Asante series of wars that lasted throughout the 19th century. It was after this Yaa Asantewaa rebellion that the British were finally able to accomplish what the Asante army had denied them for almost a century, and the Asante Kingdom was made a protectorate of the British crown.

  25. Akosua M. Abeka Fifth War or “War of the Golden Stool”: In the War of the Golden Stool (1900), also known as the “Third Ashanti Expedition”, on 25 March 1900, the British representative, Sir Frederick Mitchell Hodgson committed a political error by insisting he should sit on the Golden Stool, not understanding it was the Royal throne and very sacred to the Ashanti. He ordered a search be made for it. The Ashanti, enraged by this act, attacked the soldiers engaged in the search.
    The British retreated to a small stockade, 50 yards (46 m) square with 12 feet (3.7 m) loopholed high stone walls and firing turrets at each corner, where 8 Europeans, dozens of mixed-race colonial administrators, and 500 Nigerian Hausas with six small field guns and four Maxim guns defended themselves. The British detained several high ranking leaders in the fort. The stockade was besieged, and the telegraph wires cut . A rescue party of 700 arrived in June, but with so many sick in the fort that could not be removed, the healthier men, Hodgson with his wife and 100 Hausas escaped, meeting up with the rescue party, they managing to avoid the 12,000 Ashanti warriors and make it back to the coast.
    On 14 July a second relief force of 1,000 made it to Kumasi having fought several engagements along the route, relieving the fort on the 15th when they only had a few days of supplies left. The remaining Ashanti court not exiled to the Seychelles, had mounted the offensive against the British and Fanti troops resident at the Kumasi Fort, but were defeated. Yaa Asantewaa, the Queen-Mother of Ejisu, who had led the rebellion and other Ashanti leaders were also sent to the Seychelles. The Ashanti territories became part of the Gold Coast colony on 1 January 1902, on the condition that the Golden Stool not be violated by British or other non-Akan foreigners. The Ashanti claimed a victory as they had not lost their sacred stool.

  26. So the last war was fought in 1900 and the Asante became part of the British Gold Coast Colony in 1 January 1902. Thus the 1909 date is historically inaccurate. Source: Adu Boahen, A. Yaa Asantewaa and the Asante-british War of 1900-1

  27. Akosua M. Abeka Thanx. The gavaman of your argument still stand unscathed. Thanx for your good job in educating our people.

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