Geography Education
1.8M views | +44 today
Geography Education
Supporting geography educators everywhere with current digital resources.
Curated by Seth Dixon
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by Seth Dixon!

Ghanaian coffins

Ghanaian coffins | Geography Education |

"Amid calls for a three-day weekend in Ghana to allow residents to attend more funeral parties (with the emphasis on party), here's a look at some of the country's famous customized coffins."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Cultural practices surrounding death are designed to honor the departed and are deeply situated in the local customs.  Some people from a different cultural setting might find the cultural practices of Mexico's Day of the Dead startling.  A Google Image search of "Ghana coffin" is a fascinating display of vibrancy and life surrounding death in Ghana. 

Questions to Ponder: Do you this as having elements of popular culture or folk culture?  Would these coffins 'work' in other places?  Why or why not?  What other cultural traits and attitudes need to be in places for this to be cultural acceptable?       


Tagscultural norms, folk culture, cultureGhana, Africa.

Benjamin Jackson's curator insight, December 13, 2015 5:18 PM

the idea that funerals should be festive is an idea with a large history. it is also, i think, a very good idea. many people already get together after a funeral and drink and talk about the good times they had with the dead person, and it helps with a sort of closure.

Sarah Cannon's curator insight, December 16, 2015 5:24 PM

I've never heard of this type of burial traditions. The typical burial that I hear about and experience are the old, wake and funeral the day after the wake.  I've also heard of funerals that are held in New Orleans, when someone died the people of New Orleans paraded down the street singing and playing happy music. This was a celebration of there life. Wakes and funerals that I'm used to are always sad and depressing and held at a church and funeral home then the deceased are to be buried at a cemetery. In this article, caskets are designed differently, as you can see in the photo above. Some caskets are in the shape of a shoe, fish, car, or even a camera. Interesting way to celebrate the deceased.

James Piccolino's curator insight, February 8, 6:44 AM
I have actually seen this before, in the travel documentary "The Moaning Of Life", star Karl Pilkington (also star of previous travel documentary "An Idiot Abroad") travels the world to explore other cultures to see how they deal with issues differently than the rest of the world. In episode 5 "Death" he travels here and even gets his own custom coffin made, a double coffin for him and his long time girlfriend in the shape of a Twix bar package. This cultural attitude is an interesting one to say the least, especially compared to the way others interpret death. 
Scooped by Seth Dixon!

The Geography of E-Waste

The Geography of E-Waste | Geography Education |
The world is increasingly going hi-tech. Many people in our high consumption society want the latest and the greatest; last year’s much anticipated laptops and cell phones are miles behind the newest models that are coming out. So what happens with the old models? Even thrift stores are politely not accepting them as donations. Even some workable machines that were highly valuable 10 years ago are now functionally trash in our society. We can’t put it to the curb to end up in the landfill because of the lead, mercury, and other hazardous materials that can leak into the environment. This type of trash is what we call e-waste. The geography of e-waste is an ‘out of sight out of mind’ problem that we rarely think about but need to due to the ecological impacts of our collective consumption.

Tags: pollutionsustainability, environment, resources, Ghana, Africa.

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, November 6, 2015 5:22 PM

Areas of proaction and consumption / glean connections between places

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, November 7, 2015 9:56 AM

summer work

Kim Ruark's curator insight, February 5, 2017 5:33 PM
The other side of connectivity
Rescooped by Seth Dixon from Clean Drinking Water in Sub-Saharan Africa!

Clean Water for All

A community in Bonsaaso, Ghana learns that their local water supply contains unsafe mineral concentrations. See how they implement a filtration system design...


Ghana is one of the more stable nations in the region, and yet even it has serious issues with fresh water. This video shows how low-tech solutions can combat the tainting of water by environmental factors such as mineral contamination of water sources. The $5,000 price tag for such technology seems high, but is very affordable considering the benefits given.  Another organization working on this issue is:

Via McDerder
No comment yet.
Scooped by Seth Dixon!

The Electronic Afterlife

"E-Waste is a growing problem in our consumer-based society. The geography of e-waste is an ‘out of sight out of mind’ problem that we rarely think about but need to due to the ecological impacts of our collective consumption."

Tags: pollutionsustainability, environment, resources, Ghana, Africa.

Jeremy Hansen's curator insight, November 10, 2015 11:37 AM

Maybe getting that new iPhone isn't such a good idea, eh?

Scooped by Seth Dixon!

A 'Ziggy' Path to the NFL

Ezekiel "Ziggy" Ansah's journey to the NFL, beginning as a walk-on to the Brigham Young University football team from Accra, Ghana, who had never played foot...
Seth Dixon's insight:

Ezekiel loved playing soccer and never played American football until he was in his 20's; that is NOT a typical path to the NFL.  Ziggy's life represents the geography of opportunity.  If he had grown up in the United States, a boy with his physical abilities would have been funneled into football leagues at an early age.  If he lived his whole life in Africa, he would never become a millionaire (probably not anyway).  However, global diffusion of religious ideas brought LDS missionaries to his home in Ghana; enhanced migrational opportunities took him to Utah and all of these geographic factors (combined with his personal skills and ambition) helped him to become the fifth overall selection in the 2013 NFL Draft and a member of the Detroit Lions.  Read here for more on Ziggy.  

This story also makes be wonder if those with the greatest physical talent for a sport always gets the opportunity.  I'm sure some kids in tropical countries have the physical tools to be fantastic hockey players, but without access to participation at an early age because of the cultural preferences of the area (although with hockey you could argue it's also climatically determined), they are geographically constrained to a different set of possibilities for their lives.  

Seth Dixon's comment, April 26, 2013 7:36 PM
I have (and forgot that's where the nugget of the 'hockey' idea came from). I just wish I had those cool glasses! Poor Eagles, Ziggy is ultimate high risk/high reward pick.
megan b clement's curator insight, October 13, 2013 12:30 AM

"The article discusses Ziggy who is orginally from Ghana who came to America and usually played soccer. As a result of coming to America and his profound athletic ability adjusted to the American tradition of playing football one of America's number one past times. He came into a foreign country and not only made it his home but made football a challlenge he was going to conquere. It was not always easy but with the talent, right tools, and the right people to inspire and push him he is one of the best players in 2013."

Liam Michelsohn's curator insight, October 31, 2013 1:53 PM

The story of Ziggy is a great one; it not only shows how hard work and perseverance pay off, but also the importance of cultural diffusion. After hearing how ziggy grew up it was clear that he had some natural athletic talent, but with out the ability to come to school in America he would have never had a chance to explore his football abilities. I liked how in the video they showed a clip of him talking to the head coach when he first asked to play and he said, “ You know this isn’t soccer.” And Ziggy responded by saying, “Yes I understand but if you give me a chance I believe I can do well.”

This just shows how much geography can limit possibilities, Ziggy had never even had the opportunity to try out, train or play football from a young age. I guess it all kind of reminds me of how America is really a land of opportunities, and how a sophomore at BYU with no prior football experience can go to being the 2013 number five overall draft pick in the NHL.

Rescooped by Seth Dixon from Social Finance Matters (investing and business models for good)!

Common Cassava: An industrial crop to alleviate poverty

Common Cassava: An industrial crop to alleviate poverty | Geography Education |

Cassava, “manihot esculenta” is one of the most “disgraced” crops in Africa, of which Ghana is no exception.  Cassava is a woody shrub grown in tropical and subtropical regions. The shrub produces a starchy, edible root that is a major source of carbohydrates for humans in many parts of the world.  This crop plays a major role in the economic fortunes and nutritional health of millions in the developing world.   

Via W. Robert de Jongh
Brett Sinica's curator insight, November 10, 2013 5:24 PM

When I was younger I would sometimes go grocery shopping with my mother and she would always buy these strange looking "pieces of wood".  I always wondered why she would ever waste money on something that looked so inedible!  Come to find out it was cassava, or as she called it "yuca".  It is a popular part of her cuisine since she, along with the rest of her side of the family is from Puerto Rico.  Though this food is not so appealing on the outside, it tastes delicious and is a very versatile ingredient in cuisines around the world.  To be labeled a "poor man's food" is strange considering when this is brought to the dinner table, everyone dives in to make sure they get a piece or two.  Poor man's food, rich man's food, either way cassava is a staple in the economy and can play a key role in diets around the region and world.

Miles Gibson's curator insight, March 17, 2015 12:06 AM

Unit 5 agriculture 

This article explains how the cassava bean has been super mass produced to provide for the starving in west and central Africa. This crop has been neglected for some time now and has been recently and a discovered carbohydrate producer for the people of Ghana and is a supporting factor of the alleviation of hunger.

This article relates to unit 5 because it shows how the world of the industrialized world has evolved food into mass production to be made to alleviate all forms of hunger within the world. This is an effect of the second agricultural revolution and is now in effect and dominates the monoagricultural society of ghana.