Two as one Introduction

Two As One - Images of Male & Female Attached

Images of male – female couples have a great range of identifications: married couples, other world lovers (baule), mythical progenitors (dogon), twins (ibeji), ancestors and a host of other gods and spirits. Behind such labels lie rich constellations of meaning that account for the existence of sculptured and dance representation of couples in Africa. This help people understand themselves, the world, and the paradox: two are one. (Cole1989:52-3). For young initiates, these statues explained the necessity of dualism existing in nature, the social differentiation between men and women, and the distinction between the sexes – dualism one had to transgress in order to attain perfection, continuity and fertility in life (Leloup 1994).