These days I saw in a culture emmision 3 little documentary films about Kings in Africa.
The first one was about Ghana – I once had a black woman from Ghana here living with me for some weeks - & actually in the moment I write this, I wear a shirt from Ghana, which Sahra once brought from there. –
The funny thing in the King of Ghana & partly Togo (it’s the region of the Ashantis) is, that he works here in Germany as car mechanic, he owns an own workshop here. –
But as he was the prince & heir of the former King, he was called to Ghana to be initialized ad King, - his German, blonde, a little obese wife came with him – he had to endure a long & painful ceremony, with cuttings on his body & things he’s not allowed to tell openly, to prove that he’s worth being Ashanti King –
He graduated the ancient rituales & the enthroning ceremony wearing heavy old gold decorations & all that King’s eqipment – his wife was accepted as Queen besides him & in this report she was interviewed & told that she had learnt a lot what being Queen there means – there’s a strong only women connection & she had to learn how to deal with the separated women community & make positive decisions for women’s rights there etc. a very subtile task. – But she told, she had won the confidence of the women. –
The behaviour in traditional ways for the new king was also very important to let his people trust him & accept him as their legal King. – On the other hand he’s not allowed to act & behave like he wants to – the strict set of rules give him a very narrow corsett in his reigning & states man acts. – But as his people accept him & believe in him as their king, he gets more possibilities to decide & act & change things to the better (or worse) – the real political power lies anyway in the governments of Ghana & Togo - & they only accept him, if he behaves like they believe it’s according to the old traditions.
The other King of Africa is the King of Maroc. – He really is a King with power –let’s say a despot & he holds his country down or up to old traditions, suppressing any resistance or democratical movements. – & I don’t know how good or bad that is – I have to study the political relationships there more to be really informed – I would hate his kingdomity anyway if I find out that he supresses minorities, etnical or religious or by wealth state..
The third King in Africa was of Swaziland (somewhere in the Northeast of South Africa) – well he’s a real king – he got almost the power as the Marocanion King, & not as weak as the Ghana King - he’s at least has a real country to rule, but had in the beginning also to survive some really hard ceremonial acts to prove whether he was worth to be the King – one of the tasks was to fight a lion – in older times the Kings only equipment for that task was a spear. – The new King Mswati III of Swaziland told in an interview, that now it’s not quite that hard, but a lion is still involved.
There’s a yearly ceremonial feast in Swaziland where the King sits on his throne on the capital & a lot of his subordinates pass by in big festive parades of partly carnelalistic style – the report also showed a lot of y0ung girls who united in long marches together to reach the capital for that feast – short before reaching the town most of them were bathing in a fresh creek & didn’t care that the camera team for this documentation filmed while bathing there stark naked – the answer was, that a young girl is considered like a beautiful flower that shows its beauty – later on if ever they are married it’s taboo for them to ever show naked in public again, because then the nakedness belongs to the husband – it has it’s logic-
Anyway these young girls later on dance in a parade in front of the King dressed in little more than beads and traditional skirts & if the King likes one of the girls on the parade, he points at her & she gets his next wife – he has already 13 – but these girls seem always apparently very proud to be chosen by the king to get his next wife. –
Did I mention that one third of the Swaziland population is HIV positive? - Does the King make an AIDS test before the next chosen girl gets his next wife?
(but more seriously - I read that he makes strong efforts to diminuish AIDS in his country) - So apparently a Kingdom of decay..-
Would I like to be King somewhere somehow? – I doubt it, but I have philosophies about it – maybe later on to be continued..