Journal of
Music and Dance

  • Abbreviation: J. Music Dance
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2360-8579
  • DOI: 10.5897/JMD
  • Start Year: 2011
  • Published Articles: 23


Erotic expressions in Adowa dance of the Asante: The stimulating gestures, costuming and dynamic drumming

Stella Asare
  • Stella Asare
  • Plot 12 Block E, Ayigya Extension, Ayigya, Kumasi, Ashanti Region
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 29 December 2013
  •  Accepted: 08 May 2014
  •  Published: 30 June 2014


Contemporary Ghanaians seem to have turned away from expressing or otherwise patronising their cultural eroticism or integrating it successfully in modern dynamic lifestyles. This research focuses on erotic expressions in the Adowa dance of the Asante by examining the sensual characteristics of the dance, a resurrection of awareness hopefully will be highlighted for possible integration into contemporary forms of cultural education and entertainment. The interviewees’ accounts on their knowledge on Asante’s cultural eroticism will buttress my own experiences in living with and observing them. As culture and practice, the study throws light on arm gestures in a descriptive call and response between a male and a female performer accompanying twists and turns of the body, the costumes and adornment for either dancers accentuating the erogenous zones, song lyrics of mildly sensual ones to highly erotic ones and drum messages which are equally titillating. These findings will support documentations such as “Black Eros: Sexual customs of Africa from prehistory to the present day” (Rachiwiltz, 1967), “Symbolic movements in Ghanaian dances” (Ampofo-Duodo, 1980), and “The Ghana dance ensemble” (Seavoy n. d.) which focused one way or the other on Ghanaian dances and Africans sexuality.These aspects are closely related to the ethical and aesthetic principles that are common to most cultural performances, rooted in the Asante cultural tradition. 
Key words: Cultural eroticism, adowa dance, sexuality, asante, and Ghana.