Showing posts from March, 2016

Ghanaians be like.....

East meets West (Africa)
1: Ghana's love affair with telenovelas reached a new pinnacle this year with one TV station in
particular featuring an Indian 'soap opera' dubbed in Twi. I didn't believe it could ever happen until I saw it with my own eyes on Adom TV recently.

Imagine....some beautified Indian actresses complete with sari spitting some Twi lyrics!!! It is definitely novel and the dubbing is ok... I hardly saw any out-of-sync lips movements and audio.

I guess the  novelty hasn't worn off for me yet as it is the Indian-Ghanaian contrast that transfixes me at the moment....not the cheesy content. Let's hope more of these dubs emerge in other Ghanaian languages.

The mother of reinvention
2: I love a good spelling error and Ghana never disappoints when it comes to dishing out howlers.

Her most recent faux pas being the 59th Independence Day brochure. In the document, the Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta was wrongly named as Ghana's president....among…

Podcast: English towns with a strong African presence

The UK's major towns and cities are famed for their diverse non-indigenous populations.

In the Office of National Statistics' latest census in 2011, almost 100,000 Ghanaians are living in Britain with big cities such as London, Birmingham, and Manchester having significant populations.

But it has not always been the way. According to historian Onyeka, author of 'Blackamoores: Africans in Tudor England, their Presence, Status and Origins' , the African presence in England between 1485 and 1603 can be traced to more provincial parts of the land.

His evidence is based on more than two decades of research and over 250,000 documents and artefacts mainly from Tudor England.

Onyeka argues that Africans had a rich and diverse presence in Tudor England that transcends the familiar and singular slavery story.

In this podcast segment, Onyeka highlights the strong African presence that unlikely rural towns such as Lowestoft in Suffolk, and port cities such as Plymouth in Devon, a…

Vlog: Probing language endangerment in Ghana


Vlog: Why do some Ghanaians struggle to pass their language on to their children?

I've been trying to understand this phenomenon for years. When I compared my situation to friends from other cultures - I struggled to understand why that same pride in speaking Twi was not part of my upbringing.

As a result, I have become more than a little obsessed by my Akan roots and the Asante Twi my family speak.

My cousin in the US told me that he's been trying to encourage his little ones to learn the language and even invested in some books for that reason. But - in his words - the children are not interested.

Part of the issue - I think - is relevance. If the language is not viewed as relevant, valued and important in the house, it is unlikely youngsters would want to learn or speak it.

It is often associated with admonishment, rules and directives. Most of you in this position will know that your parents will fall into speaking their home language when they are frustrated with you or want you to do something ....and do it quick. Rarely is it linked to more neutral or pe…