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Igbo gnosis rituals and architecture

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dc.contributor.author Isichei, Uche D
dc.date.accessioned 2011-12-20T19:26:46Z
dc.date.accessioned 2022-10-31T22:41:56Z
dc.date.available 2011-12-20T19:26:46Z
dc.date.available 2022-10-31T22:41:56Z
dc.date.copyright 1994
dc.date.issued 1994
dc.identifier.uri https://ir.wgtn.ac.nz/handle/123456789/27239
dc.description.abstract In the plethora of academic discourse on the Igbo culture attempting to represent the sui generis structures of Igbo thought and knowledge, very few have been concerned with the cultural symbols of ritual and architecture. Neither the ritualisation of Igbo architecture, nor the architectural corporification evident in rituals such as Mbari, have really received the attention they deserve in discursive re-presentations of Igbo cultural symbolism. It is the thesis of this study that Igbo architecture is meaningless without ritual, and both symbols [i.e. ritual and architecture] only become meaningful in the context of a "gnosis". The term "gnosis" is used in the Mudebean sense to refer to an Igbo weltaschauung and traditional system of thought" See V.Y. Mudimbe. The Invention of Africa, Gnosis, Philosophy and the Order of Knowledge 1988. Syncretic in nature, gnosis enables collective perceptions of disparate spatial experiences and perceptions. Gnosis therefore refers to the body of knowledge that is derived from, and in a sense generates, collective cultural perceptions of space and place. Implicit in this view of gnosis, is an acceptance that these structures of knowledge condition experience, and to a large extent define, govern and transform cultural perceptions of the cosmos. or uwa. Furthermore, all cultural creations or expressions within this structure, or gnosis are believed to be regulated, or at least profoundly influenced by these common psycho-perceptual bonds. By the term "psycho-perceptual", I intend to include all the physiological and emotional responses to surrounding stimuli. This study perceives the praxis of ritual, the symbolic representation of human thought through human action, as an important aspect of symbolism in Igbo architecture. Meaning in Igbo architecture is maintained and transformed through the ritual of architecture and the architectural corporification of ritualistic ideas and ideals. Anthropologists, ethnographers, and historians have collected oral data from cultural "participants" in rituals, and architects have only very recently begun to look at Igbo architecture. But very few, if any, studies examine these symbolic expressions of the sacred, as a means to structure textual models of the Igbo gnosis. Ethnographers, on the one hand, have little knowledge of architecture believing Igbo architectonics to consist of random activities, locating villages and buildings "pretty much where it suits them" G.T Basden The Niger Ibo 1966 First ed published in 1938. Architectural studies, on the other hand seem to have virtually ignored the role of ritual, and been inclined to implement "Western" strategies and methodologies concerned solely with form and function. This study seeks to examine both ritual and architecture in an effort to further an understanding of symbolic meaning in Igbo architectonics. en_NZ
dc.format pdf en_NZ
dc.language en_NZ
dc.language.iso en_NZ
dc.publisher Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington en_NZ
dc.title Igbo gnosis rituals and architecture en_NZ
dc.type Text en_NZ
vuwschema.type.vuw Awarded Research Masters Thesis en_NZ
thesis.degree.grantor Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington en_NZ
thesis.degree.level Masters en_NZ

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