Hogbetsotso Festival

Hogbetsotso Festival

On and around the first Saturday in November
The week-long Hogbetsotso festival commemorates the migration of the Anlo-speaking Ewes, an ethnic group on the eastern coast of Ghana, from the ancient walled city of Notsie in present-day northern Togo to their current home in Ghana. According to legend, the Anlo-Ewes escaped the wicked chief, Ago-Koli, by walking backwards amidst dancing and drumming to war songs. Each year the Anlo-Ewes hold the Hogbetsotso festival, or "Festival of the Exodus," to remember their journey and the brave leaders who guided them.
The Anlo-Ewes begin the observance of Hogbetsotso with a period of peacemaking, during which any outstanding problems are resolved. They perform a ceremony to purify the traditional stool that is an important fixture in Ghanaian culture, and they clean their villages by sweeping and burning garbage. The festival culminates with a grand durbar, or reception, of chiefs and their people, which takes place on the first Saturday of November in Anloga. At the durbar, the chiefs wear bright ceremonial clothing and sit in state, while citizens pay them tribute. The entire festival period is marked by singing, dancing and merry-making. Born of age-old oral legend, the Hogbetsotso festival has been celebrated for generations.
CONTACTS:
Ghana Ministry of Tourism and Diaspora Relations
P.O. Box 4386
Accra, Ghana
www.touringghana.com/default.asp
References in periodicals archive ?
Among the topics are the dynamics of the Dogon baja ni from ritual to performance, a short overview of the history of copyright, The Lord of the Golden Cloth as a tale of ownership in occupied and independent East Timor, multimedia adaptations of trickster folktales in the age of globalization, and the making of Verba Africana IV on the Ewe Hogbetsotso Festival.
She argues in her wonderful canvass of revels, DANCING IN THE STREETS: A HISTORY OF COLLECTIVE JOY (Metropolitan, $26), that what has always really bothered anal-retentive white men of the Eurocentric persuasion about "primitive"/"peasant"/"savage"/"oriental"/"cannibalistic" enthusiasm--for instance, Aboriginal corroborees, Jamaican plantation myal dances, Polynesian frenzies unto trance, ecstatic Moroccan drumming of the Hamadsha brotherhoods, the Hogbetsotso festival of the Anlo-Ewe,