Children’s Story: Why Anansi-The Spider Always Hides At Corners?

Narrating stories to children in the villages is one of the African traditions, because they play important role in the growth and development of Children. Elders used stories to educate children on moral issues. This is a story about the spider known by the Akans in Ghana as “Anansi.” There is a reason the spider always hides in the corner or dark places.

Spider 1

Anansi-The Spider in illustration.

Anansi the spider visited his mother-in-law on an empty stomach. His wife’s mother was very pleased to see him, since her delicious meal of beans stew is ready. Even though Anansi is starving to death, he refuses to eat the food, saying he ate a couple of minutes ago.

Anansi wants to play gentle, because he is shy to eat at his mother-in-law’s house. This is actually a stupid thing to do. What has shamefulness got to do with someone eating at his mother -in -law’s house, when most of us enjoy eating at our mother-in-law’s house?

She was still persuading him to eat, when someone knocked at the door. As soon as his mother-in-law goes to answer the call, Anansi sneaks into the kitchen to fill his hat full of the hot beans stew and quickly put on his head.
Spider 2

Anansi-The Spider in illustration.

The extremely hot beans stew was peeling off his hair from the skull. He told his mother-in-law that he wants to leave. Then together both went out talking. He requested his mother-in-law to go back to the house, because he can go on his own.” His mother-in-law who wasn’t suspecting anything decides to escort him further.

When Anansi couldn’t persuade his wife’s mother to return home and also couldn’t endure the pain any longer, he lifted up his hat and the hot beans spilled all over his body. The stupefied mother-in-law stands motionless watching, as her son-in-law flees in agony.

The guilt and shame Anansi placed himself, was too much to bare that from that day he went into hiding. This is the reason Anansi-The Spider is always seen at corners of buildings or dark places hiding from his disgrace. However, in Ghana, when one is telling lies or story is inconsistent, the person is said to be telling Anansi story.

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