Tradition & Culture

Asante Architectural Heritage: The Essence Of Traditional Compound Houses

Structured Democracy has been named as one essence of Traditional Compound Houses.

A typical Asante Compound House consists of an entrance, courtyard, bedroom, a shared sanitary area and a kitchen.

The number of bedrooms has a minimum number of 4 and a maximum of 30 rooms, this can be found in the areas of Bantama, Ashtown, Amakom, Adum and others in the Ashanti Region and even beyond.

It is said the structure recognizes structured democracy where the head of a family is acknowledged as playing his role as a father.

Through the structure, there was discipline and respect in the fraternity.

Family amongst Asantes included the extended family and not the nuclear family alone and respect for authority was seen in the setting.

Security is also one importance the structure had on the fraternity.

It is within the setting that custom was practised: naming ceremonies, marriages, and funerals that instilled a sense of love and unity amongst people.

The highlights came during Prof. Osei Kwame Agyemang’s lecture on the topic ‘Asante Architectural Heritage-values, symbols and globalization.’

The event was the 7th Opemsuo Lecture organized by the Asante Professionals Club (APC) at the Business School Auditorium, KNUST.

The chairperson for the event was the Feyiasehene, Nana Addae Gyamera. Others included the Minister for Works and Housing and Bantama MP, Francis Asenso Boakye, Otumfuo’s Apagyahene and an architect, Oheneba Owusu Afriyie IV, Lawyer and Land Expert, Mariam Agyemang Gyasi Jahwary and others.

The president of APC, Ama Serwaa Nerquaye-Tetteh, past president of APC and members were all present at the event.

The keynote speaker added that Asantes ought to be proud of the Asante Traditional Houses which is the compound house.

However, it has been noticed that the traditional structure gradually fades off restricting houses to 2-4 bedrooms housing only a nuclear family.

Source: Monica M. Appiah-Manu

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