Buy Kente Stoles

What is the purpose of Kente cloth?

The tradition of the Kente cloth dates back almost 400 years, from what is now present-day Ghana, Africa. According to legend, two men from the Bonwire village encountered and admired a beautiful pattern woven into a spider’s web, inspiring a technique of weaving similarly intricate patterns into fabric. This was shared with the King, and while initially a symbol of royalty, over time Kente was worn throughout the kingdom and brought to the world on trade routes. 

Each unique shape, pattern and color woven into Kente cloth carries a specific meaning, such as a story, anecdote, or theme. To the people of Ghana, wearing Kente may represent their clan or a specific set of values. In a broader scope, Kente represents the culture and history of the region, where it’s woven into clothing, bags, and tapestries.

Descendants of Africa around the world wear Kente to express a connection with their history and as a symbol of overcoming struggle and displacement. In the United States for example, independent Ghana’s first prime minister, Kwame Nkrumah, wore Kente to a visit with U.S. President Eisenhower in 1958. African Americans, already in the throes of the civil rights movement, began wearing Kente patterns and colors in recognition of their African roots. Kente was further promoted in the U.S. with its adoption into hip-hop culture, and today many African American students ceremoniously display Kente patterns on their graduation stoles and sashes worn over their gowns.

What is the purpose of Kente cloth?


Share the knowledge!



Let's Go Viral Together!
Are you a soon-to-be high school or college grad? Do you have questions about graduation or what happens after graduation? We get lots of questions like “how do I decorate my graduation cap” and “what companies hire recent college grads”. We know you have questions so create a TikTok video or Instagram post with your question, mention @sankofaedition in your comment so we get an alert, and we will do our best to reply back with an answer for everyone to see. Let’s go viral together!

Buy Kente Stoles

Related Posts

Which HBCU Has the Best Law Program?
Which HBCU Has the Best Law Program? There are six accredited Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Law...
Read More
What does Black Girl Magic mean?
Black Girl Magic is a term used to celebrate the strength and beauty of black women. When the phrase "black girl magi...
Read More
Top 100 Inspirational Graduation Quotes by Notable Black Figures
  Nothing will work unless you do.  – Maya Angelou If you wanna make the world a better place, take a look at you...
Read More
How to Decorate a Graduation Cap
The most important stage of decorating your graduation cap is the planning, as there is no do-over once you bring out...
Read More
Which Side Does the Graduation Tassel Start On?
If you are an undergrad student, the tassel starts on the right side of your graduation cap. When the ceremonial spea...
Read More