Saturday 30 June 2012

African Culture At a Glance

This is the behaviour, practices and beliefs of a group of people or nation. It is very much related to Tradition, which is the long time hand down of
culture from generation to generation.

Africa is made up of many countries. Each of these countries having many ethnic groups with divers cultural beliefs and practices. But looking at it closely, the cultures all seem to come to one meaning. In Nigeria where I come from, there are more than 250 ethnic groups giving different cultural beliefs and practices. 

Many of these cultures which I will discuss in detail later are
good because they keep the society happy and healthy, some are actually bad, may be instituted by the fore-fathers due to ignorance, etc. because they cause unhappiness and grief to the people.  Worst thing about these bad cultures is that wicked and evil men/women hide under the guise of custom and tradition to oppress the weak. 

............Just take a simple instance of where a young girl finds a handsome man of her choice that she wants to take as her husband. The parents says she must not marry the man because the custom is that she must not marry [as she is the first daughter who must not marry].......she refuses, and she is castigated and caused with madness. 

.............A case of where a young couple is blessed with healthy, happy twin babies. The couple is saddened with the custom that they cannot keep the babies because 'it is abomination to deliver twins'. They must bring the babies to be killed. Where the couple refuses, they are driven out of the community or even kill. 

……………The Case of Osu [OutCaste]. Osus are considered slaves, strangers, unclean, untouchables and outcasts. They are treated as inferior human beings and kept in a state of permanent and irreversible disability; they are subjected to various forms of abuse and discrimination. Osus are made to live separately from the freeborn; they reside very close to shrines and market places. They are not allowed to dance, drink, hold hands, associate or have sexual relationship with the Nwadiala [Free-born]. This obnoxious practice dates back to hundreds of years ago when criminals, slaves and mostly war prisoners from neighbouring towns were dedicated to deity gods. They will be taken as slaves and put in shrines to worship and serve their gods. 

…………The case where widows are made to marry a kinsman of her late husband, often his brother. This is still being practised in many parts of Africa today. This is not entirely bad in that it ensures protection and provision for the widow and her children after the husband dies. But the bad thing is that most cases the widow is forced to marry a kinsman against her wish and any refusal is met with grievous punishment.

……………Killing of Hunchbacks and albinos, is it justified, or not justified? But you know what? The killings of these kinds of people are not because it is culture but in some ways are cultural related. There are some primitive, superstitious beliefs attached to them that make some wicked men to hunt them. In Tanzania, for example, witch-doctors say they can use albino body parts in a potion to make people rich or for good luck.

………… of this poor guy I know who is been castigated and branded as crazy because of issue of one or other aspects of culture. I mean, I see this guy leaves peacefully, neatly, quietly in his home, goes about his business peacefully. But some wicked traditionalists have organised to tell secret stories about him so that he will be regarded as crazy. 

People, especially the modern religious groups and the civilized groups are kicking against these bad aspects of culture but still happening, with strong enforcement, in many communities. The good news also, but many people are not aware of it, is that with the establishment of Human Right laws in the world today, people who their rights are violated can always seek and get justice. 

My Favourite Links: Good Cultures - More Insight
Bad Cultures - More Insight
All In Secret
Unique Welcome
OSU - The Outcaste
SEO tools by MessageForce

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Please if the "CHOOSE LANGUAGE" Tab did not show kindly refresh the
page for it to show.

We will appreciate your comment. Tell us how you feel about any of
the articles, etc.