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Margaret Feuer Plass Collection

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Image of Akua'ba (Fertility Doll)

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unknown Fante

Akua'ba (Fertility Doll)

20th century

13 1/16 in. x 2 5/8 in. x 1 1/4 in. (33.15 cm x 6.73 cm x 3.18 cm)

Bryn Mawr College
Accession Number: 99.6.3
Other Number(s): P14a (Plass Number)
Geography: Africa, Ghana
Classification: Ceremonial and Performance Artifacts; Ritual Objects
Culture/Nationality: Fante, Akan, Ghanaian, West African, African
Collection: Plass Collection

Keywords Click a term to view the records with the same keyword
This object has the following keywords:
  • African - Refers to the cultures of the continent of Africa, which is bounded by the Atlantic Ocean, the Indian Ocean, and the Mediterranean Sea.
  • akua'mma - Fertility figures, usually female, of abstracted form, with disk-like heads with high oval foreheads and most often having horizontal arms, cylindrical torso, breasts, and navel; among Asante of West Africa believed to ensure conception and successful birth.
  • Fante - Culture and style of the Fante peoples, who speak Fante dialects, located in Central and Western regions of Ghana and other regions in middle and southern Ghana.
  • ritual objects - Objects used for a particular ritual activity, often as part of a ceremony.
  • West African - Styles and cultures from the region comprising the westernmost area of the African continent, defined by the United Nations as including the modern nations of Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, Cape Verde, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo.
  • wood - The principal tissue of trees and other plants that provides both strength and a means of conducting nutrients. Wood is one of the most versatile materials known.

Additional Images Click an image to view a larger version

Exhibition List
This object was included in the following exhibitions:
  • Journeys Through African Womanhood Bryn Mawr College , Feb 14, 2003 – Mar 28, 2003
  • A Celebration of Black History: African Art from the Neufeld and Plass Collections Bryn Mawr College , Feb 24, 1992 – Mar 13, 1992
  • African Art from the Collection of Margaret Feurer Plass '17 Bryn Mawr College , May 19, 1990 – Oct 1, 1992
  • Africa: An Exhibition , Apr 2, 1975 – Sep 14, 1975

Bibliography List
The following Bibliography exist for this object:
  • Frisk & Borodin Appraisers, Inventory and Appraisement Belonging to the Estate of Margaret Barton Plass, Deceased. 7 March 1990 Bryn Mawr College Special Collections. Bryn Mawr, PA, 1990
    Page Number: 1, Figure Number: 14a

Comparanda List
The following Comparanda exist for this object:
  • Elisabeth L. Cameron, "In Search of Children: Dolls and Agency in Africa." African Arts 30, no. 2 (Spring 1997): 28, Figure Number: 13.
  • "African Heritage Document and Research Center." (Accessed June 11, 2020): Record No.: 0054863.
  • "African Heritage Document and Research Center." (Accessed June 11, 2020): Record No.: 0054831.

Related Bibliography List
The following Related Bibliography exist for this object:
  • Monica Blackmun Visona and Robin Poynor. A History of Art in Africa (Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education, Inc., 2001), 211-212.
  • Frank Willett, African Art (London, England: Thames & Hudson, 2002), 108.
  • Esther A. Dagan, African Dolls for Play and Magic (Montreal, Canada: Galérie Amrad African Arts, 1990), 70-77.
  • Elisabeth L. Cameron, "In Search of Children: Dolls and Agency in Africa." African Arts 30, no. 2 (Spring 1997): 18-33, 93.
  • "ÌMỌ̀ DÁRA." (Accessed May 10, 2020):

Portfolio List Click a portfolio name to view all the objects in that portfolio
This object is a member of the following portfolios:

If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=BMC>cite web |url= |title=Akua'ba (Fertility Doll) |author=Bryn Mawr College Library Special Collections |accessdate=12/3/2022 |publisher=Bryn Mawr College</ref>

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