ISLAMIC TALISMANIC TRADITION IN NINETEENTH-CENTURY ASANTE

Author: Owusu-Ansah, David
Year:1991
Pages:268
ISBN:0-7734-9726-9
978-0-7734-9726-9
Price:199.95
A study of the three bundles of Arabic Manuscripts from the Guinea Coast found in 1963 at the Royal Library in Copenhagen. The first part focuses on the examination of the instructions for making charms and amulets. The second part reviews factors that explain the popularity of Muslim charms in Asante. Pays particular attention to specific historical events in Asante from 1804 to 1867.

Reviews

"Owusu-Ansah has opted - rightly so - for presenting the Arabic texts in facsimile, which also allows the reader to see the often enigmatic formulae and magical diagrams (khawatim) exactly as the scribes had recorded them. The English renderings are organized according to topic, and texts full and clear enough for translation are presented separately from those which only allow for paraphrase. . . . Owusu-Ansah's work is an important contribution to the history of a body of magical lore in which medicine and medical concerns loomed very large indeed, and is relevant to the history of popular medicine in the numerous other cultures where such charms were used." - Medical History (39, Oct. 1995)

Table of Contents

1. Cod Arab. CCCII: The Matter of Provenance
2. Islam, Magic, and the Use of Charms
3. Cod. Arab CCCII: A Translation
Cod. Arab CCCII: The Production of Charms and Amulets
5. Asante Worldview and the Use of Islamic Charms
6. The Presence of the Muslim Merchant-Cleric in Early Nineteenth-Century Kumase
7. Muslims in Asante: An Overview
Bibliography and Sources Cited
Appendix
Index