Original Research

Religio-cultural heritage of libation, memory and Obang cultural history, Northwest Cameroon

Felix K. Esoh, Chammah J. Kaunda
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 76, No 1 | a5801 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v76i1.5801 | © 2020 Felix K. Esoh, Chammah J. Kaunda | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 26 August 2019 | Published: 25 February 2020

About the author(s)

Felix K. Esoh, Church History, Presbyterian Theological Seminary Kumba, Kumba, Cameroon
Chammah J. Kaunda, Global Institute of Theology, United Graduate School of Theology, Yonsei University, Seoul, South Korea


This article argues that libation, often associated with the ancestors, artefacts, images and pre-Christian religious devotions, constitutes sources for articulating authentic African cultural history of Obang community in the Northwest Region of Cameroon. It highlights that among traditional memory carriers, the ritual of libation remains trust worthy and pervasive, even among communities challenged by globalisation and colonising effects of Christianity. The article demonstrates the immense potentials of libation as an epitome and stabiliser of cultural memory, and a maxim in cultural resilience in contemporary Africa. Thus, the article calls for revisiting this ancient ritual to expose its potentials as a veritable memory repertoire in cultural–historical studies, especially at a time when social change and modernism continue to challenge the memories of traditional societies.


heritage; memorial; ritual; libation; culture; cultural history; ancestors; artefacts; history; Africa.


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