A woman wears a shweshwe dress.

• Kente cloth (striped interwoven silk and cotton cloth), from the Ashanti and Ewe people of present-day Ghana • Bark cloth, from the Buganda people of present-day Uganda • Mud cloth (made using fermented mud) from the Bambara people of West Africa • Kanga (colorful, lightweight cotton) and kitenge cloth from the lake region near present-day Tanzania • Shweshwe   (a printed cotton cloth) from today’s South Africa • Ankara (animal wax prints) from West Africa For Africans, today as well as in the past, textiles offer a sense of context and identity. When people from different parts of the continent meet one another, the fabric they are wearing tells others where they are from and to what tribe they and their ancestors belong.



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