Youth Interactive Writer
“Participation in traditional cultural performances during certain events or activities such as Africa Day and Independence anniversaries is of great importance which is vital for the preservation of our culture. African culture must be taught to the next generation for it to survive.
As the continent celebrated Culture Week, university students also took part in celebrations of African identity through cultural events.
Culture reflects the ways of life, including the arts, beliefs and institutions of a population that are passed down from generation to generation. It has been called the way of life of an entire society which includes codes of manners, dress, language, religion, rituals and food itself.
“Culture and its history are mores, beliefs and purposes. They form people’s national identity. It is essential for us, the younger generation, to preserve our cultural heritage in order to maintain our identity as a nation,” said Nicole Natsai Chimanikire, one of the students.
The importance of preserving culture and heritage is knowledge of their transmission from one generation to another. The value of this is extremely important for minority groups and large nations as well.
“If our older people continue to let culture and heritage die out, future generations will become less vibrant, so it is our duty as a young and energetic generation to continue practicing our cultural activities through our languages, our clothes, the type of food, daily norms and values not only expect the African week once a year,” added Tinotenda Ndayima.
Even though the preservation of African culture in this 21st century has become very difficult due to globalization, one of the ways in which African culture can be preserved is through the restoration of historic sites in the nation, such as Great Zimbabwe which is a reflection of the Shona way of life.
Displaying hero portraits on local currency, declaring the national dress code and enacting historic statues across the country are other ways to uphold African culture. In Zimbabwe, the construction of the statues of Joshua Nkomo and Mbuya Nehanda, the design of the $50 bill, for example, is a clear indication of how the nation is working to preserve the nation’s culture and heritage.
“As young blood, it is our duty to preserve our culture by upholding the values of Ubuntu which are unity and humanity which have always been part of African philosophy,” said Liberty Chiduku, another student.
Ubuntu promotes unity among people and unity leads people to have the same goal which will ultimately result in the preservation of African culture as one.
In this modern world filled with technological advancements, the media plays an extremely important role in creating awareness and appreciation of local culture and traditions.
A nation should preserve its culture and heritage by introducing these two elements into the curriculum. Teaching the future generation about the importance of culture must be encouraged and safely protected by knowledge.