By Maria Famakinwa
Culture is the social behaviour and norms that characterised a particular society/ nation. It is considered a central concept encompassing language, food, dressing, names, training among others transmitted through social learning to generations.
Nigeria culture which represents our collective being is at the edge of collapse and requires all efforts to uphold it from being eroded by westernization, otherwise, we may lose our collective identity.
Those who spoke with The Hope said that reviving our culture must cut across all social fabric including our dressings, names, language, respect and the training we give our children.
A-70-year-old retired civil servant, Babatunde Owoseni blamed the problem of our dying culture on parents who failed in their responsibilities. Defending his point, said, “today, most parents choose English language to communicate with their children to prove that they fit into the demand of the present generation. The situation is so pathetic that most Yoruba children cannot speak their mother tongues.
“Some do not even bear their native names because their parents refused to give them as they see native names as local names that do not conform with the current trend of westernized names. During my days as a youth, names were used to reveal which part of the State a child was from, to tell you the important role names play in our culture. To the present generation, it is not necessary which explained why Yoruba children could be mistaken for another tribe when they tell you their names.”
To correct this, Owoseni urges parents to be alive to their responsibilities and put the children on the right path. “We should all come together to save our valuables and priceless culture from extinction. Let children bear their local names instead of giving them foreign names that have no link with their culture.”
Sharing similar sentiment, a counselor, Mrs Omowumi Iyiola, who also blamed the dying culture on the families not doing the expected described family as the smallest cell of any society and added that the social vices experience in the country today is a reflection of our families because when the family fails, the society also fail.
While speaking further, observed that many youth do not respect elders because most of them do not even great their parents when they wake up in the morning. “Many of the parents cannot correct their children for doing wrong.
The home training that is very important in sustaining our culture is being traded on the altar of westernization.
Now, most of our teenagers cannot cook delicious meal, all they understand is how to make noddles, toast bread and other fast foods which explained why good number of them ended up having broken marriages due to the foreign culture we are forcing ourselves to practice.
We are so proud of foreign cultures that we want to talk, eat, dress and look like them while neglecting our esteem culture.
The counselor, who called for concerted efforts to revive our culture maintained that a country without culture is a country without future. Because, culture being the way of life of people is passed from one generation to the other.
On the way forward she said, “We should start from our dressing that does not permit men not to talk of women to expose the sensitive part of their body which is contrary to what we are seeing now.
“Let’s organise a symposium where our children will be taught the rich value and beauty in our culture and the need to promote our cherished, value and collective identity. Parents and religious bodies should also play their roles in upholding and sustaining our culture from going into extinction. Because no matter how hard we try, foreign culture we remain alien and destructive to our collective being.”