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Cultural practices such as festivals have in recent times been under
severe pressure. This has been as a result of globalization. This work is
primarily on Nkadioka Cultural Festival practices as it responds to the
pressures of globalization.
The conscious denial of the relevance or significance of African culture
and its practices by the Euro-American scholars who do not understand
African history and culture have formed the basis for judging and interpreting
African cultural practices. This attitude has led to the misinterpretation of
some aspects of African ways of life. For instance, African traditional religion
is seen as idol worshipping. The attitude is also common among some African
scholars. Ngugi Wa Thiong’o captures this attitude when he says:
The Europeans had attacked the Primitive rites of our people, had condemned our beautiful African dances, the image of our gods, recoiling from their suggestion of satanic sensuality. The early African convert did the same, often with greater zeal, for he had to prove how
Christian he was through his rejection of his past and roots1.
This much criticized and condemned African ways of life constitute their world view and social thoughts and can be located within their cultural experience. Like the cultures in every human society, the world over, these social thoughts of Africans have been directing and governing the interpersonal relationship of the Africans.
However, this idea of culture is subject to people’s interpretations, and
is based on their view points. Take for instance, a theatre scholar would want
to see culture as a rich store of ideas where most of his literary themes could
- 10 -
be drawn from. He believes that these themes will serve his creative
imaginations in reshaping the present and the future lives of the people.
Over the centuries, history has shown that certain days or periods in the life of man have been set aside either to commemorate, ritually celebrate or reenact certain events or seasons believed to be significant to man and his community. Such days or periods generally have religious or ritual significance, which usually result in celebrations. These celebrations include sacred communal meals and it is from such meals that the idea of feasts or festival developed. Festivals are therefore celebrations involving eating or drinking or both in connection to specific kind of rite. Such rites include sacrificial rites, seasonal rites or commemorative observances or rites celebrating some recorded victories. Festivals such as Nkadioka, include not only feasting but also, dramatic dancing and other artistic display. Depending on
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