The Perception of abnormality in Kasena and Nankani infants

clarifying infanticide in northern Ghana

Albert K. Awedoba, Aaron R. Denham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


While the scholarship of health researchers working in the Upper East Region of Ghana concentrates on the epidemiological and demographic factors affecting child health and child rights advocates focus on child labour, sexual abuse, neglect, and forms of abuse, few scholars have explored infanticide practices, such as the spirit child phenomenon, that are reported to occur in the region. This article, based on ethnographic research, addresses this gap by offering a description of the spirit child phenomenon. By presenting the spirit child as a form of discourse and as an infanticide practice, the article demonstrates how the spirit child is ultimately connected to local moral worlds, personhood, and concerns about the family and its perpetual continuity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-67
Number of pages27
JournalGhana studies
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • Spirit child
  • infanticide
  • Kassena-Nankana District
  • infant and maternal health
  • disability

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The Perception of abnormality in Kasena and Nankani infants: clarifying infanticide in northern Ghana'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this