Cultural Hybridity in Traditional Politics and Traditional Medicine in Ghana

Hannah Serwaa Bonsu, Dickson Adom


This study investigates hybrid cultures of the people of the Atwima Nwabiagya District of the Ashanti region of Ghana and the various ways by which these hybrid cultures have promoted local development in the areas of traditional medicine and traditional political system in the district. The study is based on the assumption that the culture of the people of Atwima Nwabiagya, and some other foreign cultures have intermingled to create a hybrid of cultures which are being used to promote local development in the district. The research also proceeds on the grounds that current cultural practices of the people of Atwima Nwabiagya are predominantly hybrid in form and any discussion of the socio-economic development issues of the district must be approached from the perspective of cultural hybridity. The literature review reveals some important theories upon which the investigations are conducted. These theories include writings on the transformation of culture, cultural hybridity, and development and in totality indicate that cultures that are transformed through cultural loss, acculturation, adaptation, and/or replacement lead to the new form of cultures that are termed as hybrid. The study was conducted using a mixed method approach with descriptive research method driving the research. Data collection instruments used for the research include interviews, participant observations of some cultural performances and analysis of some administrative and historical documents. Purposive sampling procedure was used for the selection of twenty five respondents who were very knowledgeable in the phenomenon investigated by the researchers. Data in the form of photographs of some selected hybrid products were collected to complement the analysis of the phenomenon under study. The findings show that the prevalence of hybrid cultural practices in the political and health sectors in the district. The research also shows that the development agenda of the district is spurred by the existence and engagement of hybrid cultural practices. Based on the data obtained and the analysis conducted, the study validates the assumption that the promotion of local development in the Atwima Nwabiagya District is a consequence of the prevalence of a hybrid of foreign cultures and the local culture of the people of Atwima Nwabiagya district in Ghana.

Keywords: Hybridity, Culture, Traditional Medicine, Traditional Politics, Atwima Nwabiagya District

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