Edited by Azizi Powell
This post is Part IV of a four part pancocojams series on Ghanaian, Togolese, and Nigerian customs of waving or twirling white handkerchiefs while dancing or while worshipping in church.
Part IV of this series showcases five videos of the custom of dancing with white handkerchief customs among the Igbo people of Nigeria, West Africa and among the Igbo people living outside of Nigeria.
Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2015/11/information-about-dancing-and-waving.html for Part I of this series. Part I presents information about traditional customs of waving and/or dancing with white handkerchiefs in certain West African cultures and also presents theories about the purposes of those customs in those cultures.
Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2015/11/dancing-holding-white-handkerchiefs-in.htmlfor Part II of this series. Part II showcases videos of the Borborbor (Akpesse) dances of the Ewe people of Ghana, West Africa and of Togo, West Africa. Women traditionally perform those dances holding white handkerchiefs in both hands.
That post also provides videos of church some people in Ghana waving white handkerchiefs during church services.
Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2015/12/ghanaian-culture-waving-white.html for Part III of this series. Part III showcases the custom of waving white handkerchiefs in some Ghanaian churches.
The content of this post is presented for folkloric, cultural, and aesthetic purposes.
All copyrights remain with their owners.
Thanks to all those who are featured in the videos that are embedded in this post. Thanks also to all those who are quoted in this post and thanks to the publishers of those videos on YouTube.
I believe that the customs of waving white handkerchiefs in New Orleans, Louisiana or elsewhere in the United States while marching in second line parades have their sources in the traditional customs of waving or dancing with white handkerchiefs in the Ewe cultures of Ghana, West Africa and Togo, West Africa, and the Igbo culture of Nigeria, West Africa.
Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2015/12/probable-ghanaian-sources-for-new.html for a pancocojams post about those customs that associated with New Orleans second line parades.
QUOTES ABOUT IGBO WOMEN DANCING WAVING WHITE HANDKERCHIEFS
African American Sacred Music: An Afrocentric Historical Narrative by C. Wilbert McCabe, 2008, p. 71-72
"In tems of Abigbo music and dance, it consists of “free medley dance” in which everyone present is free to participate. “Although dancers may be individualistic in their choreographic elaboration on a given dance theme and motif, certain characteristics movements recur, including supple hip/waist movements, alternate stepping forward and backwards, and shaking of the body, sometimes with waving of handkerchiefs. (Onyeji, 2004, p. 57). This is another example of an intensely spiritual and sacred experience for the Umuhu, Lagwa, and Ibeku communities as well as the Mbaise people in the Imo State of Iboland and many other African countries.”
These examples are given in chronological order according to their publishing dates on YouTube with the oldest dated example given first.
Example #1: IGBO WOMEN CULTURAL DANCE ,MUNICH GERMANY ( OTU IHUNANYA GROUP ) FIXED IN BY SAMPLE NWANYI,PART FOUR
MAMA B FROM PORTHACOURT NIGERIA, Uploaded on Jan 30, 2009
WE LOVE TO ENTERTAIN THE WORLD
Example #2: Amumara Women In Dallas, Texas [Nigerian Igbo descent in the USA]
Diesel24t, Uploaded on Jun 1, 2010
Amumara women at Amumara Development Union Americas Convention in Dallas, Texas
"Amumara" is a community in Mbaise. Mbaise is a local Government Area in Imo State, Nigeria. Read the note below the video given as Example #3 for more information on Mbaise.
Here's more information about Amumara from http://newtelegraphonline.com/lets-build-the-apostolic-church-amumara/
"Amumara is the epicenter or the administrative headquarters of The Apostolic Church, Nigeria, Igboland territory, comprising eight states of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, where faithful converge twice annually for the Area and Territorial conventions.
Secondly, Amumara is the home of the only Theological Seminary The Apostolic Church Igboland has, where pastors and leaders are trained. The degree awarding institution established almost 40yrs ago, is accredited by the National Universities Commission (NUC)and affiliated to the University of Uyo."
Notice the Nigerian (and some other African nations) custom of spraying dancers with cash money. Also notice that one of the dancers twirls a brown handkerchief instead of a white one. Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2011/09/pinning-birthday-dollars.html for one of several pancocojams posts on spraying money.
Example #3: Mbaise Association of Maryland, 2011 Event
Diesel24t, Uploaded on Sep 18, 2011
Mbaise Women dance, Best Western Hotel in Baltimore, Maryland
Date: Sunday, September 18, 2011
Here's some information bout Mbaise from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mbaise
"Mbaise is a region and a people located in Imo State, southeastern Nigeria. Set in the heart of Igboland, it includes several towns and cities. The name "Mbaise" was derived from five cities: Agbaja, Ahiara, Ekwereazu, Ezi na Ihite and Oke Uvuru.... The Mbaise Slogan is Seat of Sages.
The people are Igbo. About 90% Catholics, while Protestants and other religions comprise the remaining amount."...
Example #4: IGBO DAY 2011 - women's cultural dance
ICAC youtube channel,Uploaded on Sep 28, 2011
IGBO DAY 2011 - women's cultural dance
A traditional dance performance of the Igbo women.
"Mgbogho" by Cultural Music Masters
Example #5: URUAGU NNEWI WOMEN - Cultural Dance [Nigerian Igbos]
IGBO NATION Tv, Published on Oct 23, 2014
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