Experience the Story of Adinkra

Experience the Story of Adinkra

Experience the Story of Adinkra

Call For Submissions

In celebration of our culture and heritage as Ghanaians,

The Adinkra Poetry Prize invites poetry submissions that respond to [3] of the 200+ existing Adinkra symbols.



Mate Masie

Adinkra symbols are visual representations of Akan proverbs. The symbols are indigenous to the Akan people of  West Africa. In Twi, Adinkra is also a greeting that means farewell. Because of the myth associated with the meaning of the word, Adinkra symbols are also popularly known as mourning cloth. Akan elders who highly revere their ancestors believe that the symbols serve as a medium of communication through the living and Asamando where the dead go to continue their life journey.

This website explores and archives the use of Adinkra as a symbolic language system for people of the African Diaspora.  Adinkra symbols have several moving parts: language, art, decorative art, and material culture. The symbols were transferred to the United States during the late eighteenth century by Akan artisan men and continue to be used as a mode of bridging the multilingual gap between Africa and people of African descent. Adinkra symbols promote the joy of PanAfricanism and the beauty of West African languages.

Our Sponsors and Partners