Kúsì-ɓòɖòɔ̀ Báɓò presented in Afrotropical Bassa from the Star & Shield Clothing Archives

Recommended: Jah Kingdom:
Rastafarians, Tanzania, and Pan-Africanism
in the Age of Decolonization

Monique A. Bedasse, Jah Kingdom:
Rastafarians, Tanzania, and Pan-Africanism
in the Age of Decolonization. University
of North Carolina Press, 270pp.

The Rastafari religious movement has
spread from the Caribbean to many parts of
the world since the 1930s and this is due, at
least in part, to the Rastafari’s long-held hope
for repatriation to Africa as well as Jamaican
popular culture’s transnational appeal. From
Senegalese Muslim Rasta making pilgrimage
to the Mouride holy city of Touba to
Rasta-identifying Maori nationalists in
Aotearoa, New Zealand, and from Israeli
Dreads fostering philo-Zionism in Tel Aviv to
Kyoto-based Zen Rastas looking to reclaim the
Japanese environment, Rastas are everywhere.
Today’s bredren and sistren are becoming less
homogenous, however, and local livities as well
as global diversity are now an integral part of
the way Rastas are evolving. Recent studies
confirm this observation. And by emphasizing
the Rastafari’s impact as well as existence in
far-flung parts of the world, scholars are now
underlining the idea that Rasta may best be
understood as an artful, vernacular religion
in commonplace life. Bedasse is one such
scholar. An associate professor of history and
of African and African-American studies at
Washington University in St. Louis, she has
authored an award-winning book that ranges
across three continents and five countries
to reveal how today’s Rastas are rising to the
challenge of re-imagining their faith to fit
their ever-changing world(s). Here, Rastafari
repatriation to Tanzania is the lens through
which Bedasse investigates complex issues of
race, gender, and social class; religion’s nature
and function; tense alliances between
indigenous Tanzanian Rastafari and diasporic
Rastafari repatriates; and, the ostensibly uneasy
alliance between socialism and economic
development in decolonial times. “The
Rastafarian movement has made its mark
around the world as a cultural phenomenon,”
Bedasse acknowledges. “Yet the focus on its
cultural representations has neglected the
history of Rastafari’s evolution as an
expression of black radicalism, and has
relegated its militancy to a bygone era when
its association with popular culture could
not have been foreseen.”
Jah Kingdom complements other, recent
accounts of Rastafari repatriation to Africa,
such as those authored by Giulia Bonacci
and Erin C. MacLeod, yet it moves beyond
their sterling efforts, revealing an emerging
site of Rastafari identity—Tanzania—and
shows readers how Rastas in this East
African country are using black radical
politics to repair the ancestral links broken
by colonialism, the slave trade, and certain
forms of neo-colonialism. Bedasse’s
virtuoso study, which makes detailed use of
numerous and valuable primary sources,
“insists on a history driven less by outsiders
and more by the men and women for whom
Rastafari remained an enduring and
ever-evolving project,” and therefore I think
it ranks as the most instructive model for
the future of Rastafari Studies.

“Signs of Power: Amenhotep “Nebmaatre” Ring and the Ring of Solomon Unveiled”

Discover the fascinating tale of two ancient rings, the symbols of Amenhotep III and Solomon, that transcend time and geography. Explore their shared heritage and profound significance in this captivating journey through history and culture. #AncientRings #HistoricalArtifacts

Amenhotep III and Solomon

Amenhotep is a Kemetic name composed of two parts: “Amen,” which is the name of the god of creation and fertility in ancient Egyptian mythology, and “hotep,” which means “peaceful.” Therefore, Amenhotep means “Amen is pleased” or “peaceful with Amen.” The name was commonly used among pharaohs of the 18th dynasty of Egypt, including Amenhotep III and Amenhotep IV (Akhenaten). While Solomon is a Hebrew name that means “peaceful” or “having peace.” The name is derived from the Hebrew word “shalom,” which means peace. It is a significant name in the Bible, as it is the name of one of the kings of Israel, who was known for his wisdom and wealth.

There are several similarities between Amenhotep III and the biblical Solomon:

  1. Great Builders: Both Amenhotep III and Solomon are renowned for their great building projects. Amenhotep III was responsible for the construction of many impressive temples and palaces, including the Colossi of Memnon, while Solomon is credited with building the First Temple in Jerusalem.
  2. Wealth and Power: Both men were incredibly wealthy and powerful rulers. Amenhotep III’s reign was marked by peace and prosperity, while Solomon’s kingdom was known for its immense wealth and influence.
  3. International Relations: Both Amenhotep III and Solomon maintained extensive diplomatic relations with other nations. Amenhotep III is known to have exchanged letters and gifts with several foreign leaders, while Solomon is said to have had a great deal of contact with the Queen of Sheba.
  4. Religious Significance: Both men were also significant figures in their respective religious traditions. Amenhotep III was considered to be a divine ruler in Kemetic religion, while Solomon was known for his wisdom and devotion to God in the Jewish tradition.

While there are certainly some similarities between Amenhotep III and the biblical Solomon, it is important to note that they were also very different in many ways, including their cultural backgrounds and the specific details of their reigns.

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