International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

A Spectrum of the Ancestral World: Reflections on the functions of the kasiɣiriba in Dagbaŋ
Haruna Abdallah Imam, Adam Peter Pazzack

Death, although a dreaded event, is perceived among the Dagbamba as the beginning of communication between the visible and the invisible worlds. Thus, the goal of life for a Dagbana (singular for Dagbamba) is to become an ancestor after death. This is why every person who dies must be given a befitting burial accompanied by a welldeserved traditional funeral. If this is not done properly, the dead may become a wandering ghost unable to settle down in the ancestral world, and therefore a danger to the living. However, in the Dagbamba cultural milieu, the dead cannot get to the ancestors if he or she is buried by anyone other than a kasiɣira. In this paper, we present the impact of the kasiɣiriba (plural for kasiɣira) on the social as well as the religious life of the people of Dagbaŋ. The paper established that a kasiɣira is a person who is responsible for the confirmation of the death of a person, digging the grave, preparation of a corpse for interment, and placing the corpse in the tomb.

Full Text: PDF