TOPIC 1: CULTURE
Aspects and Elements of Culture
Culture can be defined as all the behaviors, ways of life, arts, beliefs and institutions of a population that are passed from generation to generation. Culture has been called “the way of life of an entire society”. As such, it includes codes of manners, dress, language, religion, rituals, norms of behaviour - as law and morality - and systems of beliefs, as well as the arts.
The Origin of Culture: As stated before, culture is the totality of people's way of life, so it is compatible with human life. It is argued historically that, culture started simultaneously with the creation of man and the formation of communities of people, as they were adopting themselves to their environment and struggled to sustain they used different tools, ranging from stone to iron tools such as axes, arrows pots and knives.
At the beginning culture was also determined by wearing style. Previously man made clothes using animal‟s skins, grasses and trees. Language was used in communication especially when man established permanent settlements. Language united people during working, such as cultivating and hunting; through language man was able to construct songs and poems, which were used as a part of refreshments particularly when issues arose such as traditional rites. Although culture went hand in hand with human life, it varied according to the needs of the society, and the influence of environment.
Culture has two aspects, namely:
1. Material culture; This is the extent of materials or wealth produced or used in a society. It includes the achievements to which one has mastered; level of instrument and technical skills, the scientific organization of labour, the availability of individual material and everyday needs. Instruments of labour are the tools individuals use to carry out material production. Their quality depends on the level of science and technology ofa given society in that particular time in history. The level of material culture is expressed in skills and know-how applied in material production. It is also seen in other material elements of the society's life. For example, in the objects one uses, such as clothes, furniture and utensils, scientific, academic and medical equipment, as well as transport facilities.
2. Intellectual culture; Thisis societal knowledge, skill and technical ability to organize and produce things as well as how one relates with others. This includes the achievements reached in science, education, ethics, literature and art. It is also reflected in the political ideas, civic education, legal relations, language, speech and behaviour.
Culture is traditionally considered as kind of civilization and is very complex. It includes knowledge, beliefs, arts, morals, laws, traditions, customs and other capabilities and habits acquired by an individual as a member of society. Culture consists of patterns of behaviour which are acquired and transmitted by symbols. Essentially, culture consists of traditional ideas.
Essentially, culture consists of traditional ideas, particularly their associatedvalues. These include standards of behaviour and ideology which justifies certain ways of behaviour. Culture is rooted in the facts we know abouthuman nature. There is an interplay between man, his environment and society. As a result of this interplay, man behaves in certain ways.
Man shapes the environment and he is also shaped by his environment. Thus, while it is true to say that man makes society, it is equally true to say that society makes man. Hence, culture refers to thetotal way of life shared in the society. Culture therefore, consists of behaviour patterns that are either open or hidden.
Open or explicit behaviour patterns are those whose meanings are easily understood either by an individual or outside observers. Examples could be like patterns of modesty and hospitality. This does not mean that an open pattern of behaviour is universal and is practiced in the same way in all cultures. In fact, there can be many variationsin its expression from one culture to another.
In hidden or implicit behaviours patterns, the meaning of these patterns is not easily understood because it depends on other factors which are hidden in the cultural system. The inner aspect is not openandis either deliberately concealed or pertains to the unconscious life of the group. There are many concealed social practices in all parts of the world, especially common social fears; fear of the evil eye, fear of witchcraft , fear of speaking openly about sexual matters, taboos, fear of the luck on certain days or after certain occurrences like split salt. Although the practice of these things may be open and public, their meanings remain concealed. In most parts of Tanzania, salt is not asked for or bought at night by mentioning the word "salt,‟ instead people say "dawa ya jiko,‟ literally translated as "kitchen medicine.‟
Man needs culture in order to survive, but in order to be cultured he must participate in the cultural life of his humanenvironment. He must get line with the norms of his human environement. Therefore, in this sense man lives by his culture. It follows therefore that, culture is the common way of living.
Elements of Culture manifest themselves in Physical and Practical way:
a) Customs and Norms
Customs refer to short-lived patterns of behaviour shared by members of a groupandcan be directly observed. For instance, people who know each other greet by shaking hands whenever they meet while others hug each other. However, customs differ from one society to another. The set of customs form one of the indicators of culture.
Norms are accumulated experiences proven to be acceptable and appropriate ina given society, and they have atendency to exist forlong periods before they change or disappear. This forms the main difference between norms and customsas normshaveatendencyto exist forlong periods before they change or disappear. Whereas customs on the other hand are passing and vulnerable to change. Take for instance, the wearing of clothes, shoes or hats in a certain fashion usually changes with time.
Norms can be classified in different ways. All groups are called folkways and theyare further subdivided into mores. There are special folkways that a society regards as essential for its welfare. Mores are enforced with great vigor and intensity. Folkways are practices that govern most of our daily routine and ordinary contact with other people. They often define what is socially correct and are informally enforced. However, the violation of folkways is not considered as a threat to the group at large. Folkways can include the daily practice of things such as languageandeating habits. Take for example, someone may not be allowed to use his left hand to eat or to adhere to the proper way of greeting elders.
Folkways define proper etiquette in various roles. For example. they distinguish children's roles from men's roles. They govern our general style of life in types of housing, dressing, food and feeding habits. Other behaviour patterns include education, marriage, recreational activities, youth initiation, science and technology. Furthermore, death and burial procedures, forms of governance, respect to status and mode of communication to people of different ranks are essential to the folkways of a given society.
On the other hand, mores are norms that are considered vital to the welfare of a society. They are not only proper but also obligatory. They are supported by the dominant values or principles of the culture. Mores define right and wrong, moral and immoral actions, thoughts and feelings. They may be expressed in a command way such as“You must not!” in which way they are referred to as taboos.
Fashions are highly passing patterns of behaviour. Fashions allow many changes in norm. Things like art, dress or furnishings can change so fast. Fashions appear to be of high importance in complex urban societies. Women usually change their dressing styles from time to time, to stay up-to-date with the changing fashions.
This is another important element or indicator of culture. Language is a learned, shared and arbitrary system of vocals and symbols through which human beings communicate. It is a system of convectional symbols that covey meaning and is a useful instrument in all economic, social, political, psychological and ideological aspects of society. Language is not only a communicative instrument but also is a product of work. In their effort to produce goods and services, people develop words and therefore, language is further developed.
Each language shapes and shows the culture, behaviour patterns and understanding of the group that speaks it. It presents to the learning child a ready–made and distinctive way of looking at the world. It also guides him/her to not only observe the world in a certain way, but also to express him/herself and react in a certain way. Every language has an effect upon what the people use, see and feel, as well as what they talk about.
The names given, for example, to various relatives in different cultures are often symbolic as they connote different behavioral norms. In Kiswahili for instance, we regard the brother of our father as our father, and the sister of our mother as our mother. This helps indicate how close these relatives are to you and therefore, the kind of behaviour you should express towards them.
Language is an instrument that enables communication among people in their customs, norms, philosophy and ideology of a given society. Over 100 languages are spoken in Tanzania, most of which from the Bantu family. After independence, the government recognized that this posed threat to national unity and as a result introduced the Swahili language (Kiswahili) as the only official language. The government introduced it as the teaching language in all primary schools help encourage and spread its use.
Given the conditions of the material time, it was not possible to introduce the language in the entire educational system as the scale of the task of producing Swahili textbooks for primary schools was already considerable. As a result, English (which has been considered the colonial language since the end of the First World War) is still used in high schools and universities. However, a great majority of Tanzanians have accepted Swahili, thus English is generally not well known. As a result of this linguistic situation, many pupils who finish primary education cannot express themselves well in English. Although many tribal languages are actively practiced and used, they do not enjoy the same linguistic rights as Swahili. However, little by little they are disappearing. To date, none of them has entirely vanished, but it is clear that unless the linguistics policy is changed, many of them will soon cease to exist.
Kiswahili as the national language in Tanzania has the function of developing, enhancing and maintaining the nation's culture. How then does Kiswahili as a national language promote national culture? Kiswahili like any other language has symbols that are spoken or written. And these symbols have specific and arbitrary meanings in society. Before we can answer the question above on how Kiswahili can promote national culture, we should first discussthe possibilities.
First, language caries people's experience beyond an immediate time and place. That is, when these symbols (words) are spoken and/or written, the meanings conveyed stay for a longer time and they also go to distant places beyond where these words were spoken or written. Let us look at the experience we have from words spoken by our ancestors and words written by other people who lived far from where we live.
Every one of us has a list of traditional stories that were told to him or her by one of his/her grandparents. This story could be about bravery, praise, sorrow or happiness. Whatever meaning the story had, it created some feelings that had an impact on your attitude. The result of this impact is the change of your behaviour in the community.
We have songs and other written literature about our nation, leaders and people as a whole. All these have helped create feelings towards the love of and for our country. There are feelings that can lead to the defense of someone's nation. Songs like “Mungu Ibariki Tanzania” (God Bless Tanzania) and “Tanzania, Tanzania” inculcate patriotism to Tanzanians.
Certain words in these songs have apsychological impact on Tanzanians. Patriotic phraseslike “Jina lako ni tamu sana” (Your name is very delicious) imply a strong love forone'scountry. Such words create and promote national culture in that they are learned and shared with others and therefore, socially transmitted. This makes the whole society have acommon belief and attitude that the song relatesto them, known aspatriotism.
A common language binds people together. To speak the same language is to have a strong bond. And this strong bond enables a person a person to work together, which is one of the most favourable cultural values.
This is an element or indicator of culture. Art as part of culture is an expression which reflects the feelings, attitudes and level of development of a society. Arts denote man made things displayed to be enjoyed. For instance dramatizing and singing. Any art which originates from a given society has roles to perform for that society. For example, it reflectively shows what people have done in their struggle for survival. The carvings, the painting, the songs, and drama represent certain actual struggles or practical life these people have experienced before.
Forms of Art
1. Using sound such as in singing or pronouncing a speech.
2. When someone combines language and instruments like when doing some things like singing, drumming and dramatizing.
3. Visual aids like pictures, maps, paints and cinema.
4. Demonstration of cultural troupes, sport, and games.
Art reflects the feelings of patriotism in the struggle for the development of a national economy. This situation drives people to the extent of musicians coming up with songs calling for change in national institutions, whereas some defend, support and praise national institutions.
Art reflects the type of problems encountered by a given society. These problems can be social, political or economic. The drawings in the Kondoa caves typically reflect the economic occupation of the people in that area in the past.
Art is one of the most effective communicative systems in traditional societies that tend to be illiterate. Art is used to convey, store and preserve important events and phenomena in a society. Important memories in life can only be artistically expressed to appraise events. Art also preserves records of those successes in different forms.
In their collective form, rules or patterns form another indicator of culture for behavior, known as Norms. These rules are those that members of a group, community or society agree to follow. The rules determine what is right or wrong in a given society. Norms are connected with ranks as well as situations and are recognized into roles. The pattern of behaviour expected of people differs from ranks, such as husbands, fathers, citizens, employees, and children.
It is also a norm for our children to start greeting and vacating seats for elders in certain situations. Norms include the most important things in the society. Consider things like taboos, legacy, history, rituals, treatment of diseases, respect, obedience and laws concerning marriage, births, inheritance and burial ceremonies to mention only a few.
Another important element of culture is recreation. The word recreation means relaxing and amusement. In any society where work is done, recreation is quite necessary. Work tires the body and mind so it is vital to rest and experience. Good entertainment is that which refreshes a person e.g. voluntary hobbies, sports, games, music and even dancing.
Ideology combines the beliefs of people and is this element of culture that lays down principles and conditions to be followed by a given society. Ideology forms the foundation for all other elements of culture. The mode of production is one which explains the way people own property and how they share what they produce.
The fact that the ideologies shared by a society is a product of how people own property, it is clear that the type of ideology prevailing in a society will be a true reflection of the type of the organization of the economy in general. For instance, in asociety where the dominant type of ownership is private, the beliefs of the people in that particular society is competive and individualistic.
Laws form another indicator of culture; there is no culture without laws. We can define laws as deliberately formulated rules of behaviour that are enforced by a special authority. Laws serve several purposes; they enforce the mores accepted by the dominant cultural group in the society, regulate new situations not covered by customs and bring about the real cultural and ideal patterns of a society. The enforcement of norms by law in Tanzania is the responsibility of the society and community as a whole. For instance, it is the responsibility of every individual, family and community as a whole to make sure children go to school. Failure to implement this obligation may result in the forces being applied to enforce this law.
This implies interacting with others in the community. It helps not only the members in getting insight into what goes on in the community but also gives a chance to members to learn and benefit from the community. It is very important for each organization to stabilize personal relationships between members of society. This is essential to primary or secondary groups. Primary groups in this context include the family, schools, organized clubs, or villages where members know each other. Secondary groups include large societies and nations.
Man is a social being because he likes to live and work in groups. These groups are normally organized for short or long periods of time. In all societies of the world today, people live and work together with the objective of assisting one another in producing commodities for their consumption. These include the production of food requirements, the provision of social services like building houses, harvesting, attending funerals, and holding ritual ceremonies. These activities were some of the social values of cooperation during the communal period of life and were carried on up to the time when foreigners came to Africa. The same practices are still maintained in some societies though, with some modification. The spirit of cooperation has been and still is an important social value for maintaining national unity. Without this cultural value, individual members would not have been bound together to form an integrated nation.
These are experiences of the past that are inherited by a society and are unchangeable. They include marriage, food, local brews, funeral ceremonies, family care and home economics. Other aspects include initiation, worshiping system, sports and games. Every society has its own tradition.
j) Crafts and tools
Tools are instruments of labour used by people for production and they differ from one society to another depending on the nature and level of technology of the society. For example, tools used in the Stone Age were poor compared to the tools used during the Iron Age. These tools included iron hoes, axes and pangas. Crafts are technological creations by man that express man's culture. Examples of crafts are decorations and carved materials. These differ in form according to the culture of the society. People utilize, and in some cases exploit their environment to make crafts.
|African way of giving food to the husband|
The Importance of the Cultural Elements:
1. The values of culture help future generations to know how to escape from bad practices and evils in the society such as drug and child abuse, stealing and any other kind of bad behaviour which is not proper in society. Ethics are passed by adults to young ones through informal education.
2. Language is used to convey messages and is also part of the identity of a nation. For example Kiswahili in Tanzania distinguishes the nation of Tanzania from other nations in the world who use different languages such as English, French and German. Language can be used to unite, educate and inculcate a sense of awareness to youth.
3. Sports and games promote unity, cooperation and friendship among social members. This is because sport and games collect people together to share different ideas and build a better society.
4. Crafts in particular, provide households with necessary materials such as furniture, pots and baskets which are used daily. Some of them can be sold to provide money for people, hence a source of income.
5. Traditions are also worthwhile. For example, initiation ceremonies prepare young boys and girls for their responsibilities to society as adults. They promote people from childhood to adulthood. Some traditions and customs such as marriage and burial ceremonies bring people together at times of problems and/or pleasure.
6. Customs help societies adopt certain cultural values like dressing style, eating habits, hairstyles etc. which are sometimes worthwhile for acceptable in certain occasions - e.g. in wedding ceremonies.
7. Art helps us express our feelings, attitudes and events in a very enjoyable way, e.g. through songs, drama and pictures.
8. Recreation refreshes a person after hard work. It helps people relax and gather energy before they engage in production again. Hence, recreation is important to man. Ideology is another important cultural element because it lays down principles and conditions to be followed by a given society. Thus, it provides a guideline to how people should live in a given place and time.
9. Like ideology, rules and laws are very crucial cultural elements as they defend social norms and determine what is right or wrong in the society. Thus, they shape the behaviour of people.
10. Co-operation is the next crucial element of culture, asit promotes interaction of people in a given society. Through interaction, people are able to perform collective and important activities like burials or pastoral activities which a single person cannot do.
Disadvantages of Culture Elements
1. Traditional ceremonies, such as "ngoma” contribute a lotto the spread of STIs (Sexually Transmitted Infections) and diseases such as HIV/AIDS. Initiation ceremonies which involve circumcision of birth female and male can also cause problems such as the transmission of HIV/AIDS, especially when they are not done properly. Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) can cause high bleeding and difficulties during childbirth.
2. Through visual arts such as video and television, indigenous culture can be destructed by imposition of foreign culture. Foreign culture is imposed through the media such as radio, printand television. People learn different practices such as inappropriate dress styles, and other things like gay lifestyles.
3. Polygamist tradition may also be a cause of poverty and spread of HIV /AIDS. Patriarchy system as cultural practices limits women rights and hence retards development in the society.
4. There are some traditional ways of life which prohibit certain groups of people to eat some kind of food which is nutritious. For example, there are taboos in some societies which prohibit women from eating eggs when they are pregnant. Again some discourage family planning.
5. Social institutions and religious beliefs can transmit negative attitudes to the people about the culture of a certain society. For example, colonial education and religion imparted ideas of despising Africa culture and glorifying western culture. Christian missionaries said Africa culture was “barbaric”.
There are some traditional ways of life which prohibit certain groups of people fromeating certainkinds of food which arenutritious. For example, there are taboos in some societies thatprohibit women from eating eggs when they are pregnant. Additionally,some discourage family planning. Polygamist tradition may also be a cause of poverty and the spread of HIV /AIDS. Patriarchy system as cultural practices limit women rights and hence retards development ofthe society.
Products of Culture
1. Beside the elements of culture, we also have products of culture. Culture is now a commodity to be sold in the form of made products, clothes, accessories, leisure opportunities, sportswear and other consumer goods. Products of culture should be understood in its past-present forms.
2. All cultures must produce both economic and social types of products. The nature of these products and their use depend on the cultural level of a given society.
Importance of Culture
Culture helps make young people familiarize themselves withsocial values notably language, beliefs and taboos.
1. It gives knowledge to people (young ones) on social transformation of different societies.
2. It helps people to know their past social settings and laws that have been governing nature in different societies.
3. It exposes youngsters to tasks that are similar to those of elders.
4. It is a medium for bringing up youth in order to cope inasociety.
5. It enables people to transmit their skills, knowledge and wisdom from one generation to another.
6. It equips learners with insightful knowledge on bad and good cultural practices and therefore chooses the positive ones.
POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE ASPECTS OF OUR CULTURAL VALUES
a) Positive aspects of cultural values
1. Among the most outstanding aspects of our cultural values are:
2. Respect among members of a given societies.18Here, children are taught how to respect their parents and elders. Every person in the society has the right to be treated with respect.
3. Respect for the law is another positive cultural value, because t helps to maintain order and discipline in that given society. In a society with peace and order no one is above the law.
4. Care for the old, sick and disabled is a positive cultural value. It is the responsibility of the society to take care of them, since they are a product of the society. The old, for instance, were once strong people who gave birth to off springs who are now the strong able bodied people of the society.
5. The communal self help is a crucial culture value as it promotes performance of collective work in the society for the betterment of the people of the people themselves.Care for the young is a very vital cultural value and it is done not only by parents but all members of the community. In traditional societies, each adult person was a teacher and care taker to the young.
6. Community co-operation as a cultural value and it is done not only by parents but all members of the community. In traditional societies, each adult person was a teacher and care taker to the young.Community co-operation as a cultural value is important in that it is promoting interaction among members of the society. Such co-operation brings unity and increases the ability of the community in carrying out various communal activities.Proper or descent dressing according to local or national norms is another positive cultural value because it preserves ones good personality. It makes the wearer look descent and acceptable in different situations depending on the nature of one‟s occupation, occasion and time for the dressing and the place in question.
7. Participation in civil activities is a positive cultural value since it brings people together towards performing different constructive activities for the betterment of all the people e.g. constructing roads, building schools for our children or even building dispensaries and clinics in places where there is that demand.
8. Hard work is another positive cultural value certainly because through hard work a person is able to produce more and better goods and service for the betterment of oneself, the community and the nation.19Being informed is an important cultural value because; it makes an individual knowledgeable about one‟s duties, responsibilities and rights in his/her society.
9. Accountability and transparency: The society is supposed to perform its functions and duties with openness so that people know what the society understands of their society. Once this is done, peoples‟ expectations and wishes can be fulfilled. Transparency is very necessary for the development of people and the society at large.
b) Negative Aspects of Cultural Values
These are many but among the most outstanding are;
1. Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)
This is a collective name which describes procedures or practices that involve partial or total removal of the clitoris in the female genitalia or other parts of the female genital organ whether for cultural or other non-medical reasons. The female genital mutilation is a violation of basic human rights. Areas affected with this practice in Tanzania are Kilimanjaro, Dodoma, Arusha, Manyara, and Morogoro regions. In Dodoma, for example, 12, 613 out of 16, 789 (75%) of the women who went for delivery between 1988 – 2000 were mutilated.
Reasons which force people to engage in (FGM)
There are several reasons which force some of the societies to adopt FGM. Most reasons are based on the nature of the society. Among these are as follows:
1. To control women‟s sexuality. Societies which adopt this practice (FGM) know that biologically there are some parts of the body which are very sensitive during sexual intercourse. One of them is the clitoris. So to prevent a girl from developing interest in sexuality and become loose they mutilate it.
2. It is propounded that FGM goes with initiation ceremonies that promote young girls to women hood. Thus it is considered by some prestige traditional societies as a prestige and a sign of maturity among girls.
Effects of Female Genital Mutilation
1. Marital conflicts due to sexual dissatisfaction. This situation can result from two reasons. Some men dislike women who are mutilated. On the hand, circumcised women don‟t enjoy the sexual activity. Thus, they lack satisfaction in sexuality and may dislike sexuality altogether.
2. Women who are mutilated develop a feeling of anxiety and depression. This can be a result of the pain they feel during circumcision or due to the deformation of their pain they feel during circumcision or due to the deformation of their genitalia. This can cause psychological disturbance.
3. The practice can lead to the loss of one‟s life. Some girls and women loss of blood from the cut part.
4. The last effect is possibility of getting the HIV/AIDS infection as this practice is done under unsafe conditions. Sometimes a single knife is used to circumcise several girls/women without being sterilized. For this case, those who are mutilated have the risk of being infected with HIV/ and may also get other diseases.
2. Wife Inheritance
Wife inheritance is the process of taking one‟s wife after the death of her husband. Inheritance of wives can also be termed as inheritance of widows.This has been a major problem to the societies which practice this system of life these days. This is because those who tend to inherit widows can die due to the effects of HIV/AIDS because widows may be victims of HIV/AIDS and a person who inherits them will be infected. This endangers one‟s life. Inheritance of widows should be discouraged in the society in order to avoid the rate of transmission of different diseases such as HIV and AIDS. Also inheritance of widows seems to be a violation of human rights because it has turned women into objects of leisure form men. Widows appear to be there to be inherited to satisfy men who inherit them. Inheritance of widows should be discouraged strongly in the nation.
3. Early Marriage
This is the process/situation whereby a person gets married before his/her right age. Normally the suggested right age for marriage is 18 years and above. Nowadays marriages among people under the right age have been common. This has been happening especially to young girls who21are married while they are still in tender age. These types of marriages are sometimes accompanied by forced marriages.
4. Forced Marriage
Sometimes young girls have been forced to get married to men whom they do not want. Parents or guardian propound this situation perhaps for the aim of reducing the burden of children at home. Young girls are thus forced to be married rather than being forced to attend school.The reason is, some parents depend on the dowry or bride price they get as capital for production. This situation leads to forced marriages. These are some of the driving forces for early marriage because some societies think that bride price and dowry can help them to run different social and economic activities.
|Female Genital Mutilation|
Customs which Lead to Gender Discrimination
These customs can best be analyzed by different institutions which perpetuate them. Such institutions are:
1. The family: The family-level, it is a belief that boys will continue the lineage and support the family, while girls will get married. Thus most families prefer to educate boys or spend more money on them at the expenses of girls, when a choice has to be made between the two.
2. Traditional institutions: Initiation ceremonies play a major role in perpetuating bias. Girls who have undergone initiation ceremonies become passive in school. Traditional counselors and elders initiate, girls with emphasis on submissiveness to men. Because of that, women do not take part in decision making at home.
3. Learning Institutions: In these institutions it is a common practice that boys are offered science subjects and mathematics, while girls are made to study the traditional girls subjects29such as home economics and typing. More often there is also discrimination from some teachers, who expect boys to be more intelligent than girls. Girls are not encouraged to work hard.
4. Religious institutions: Church or Mosque leaders make references to the Bible or Quran on the submissive nature of women. Women are denied opportunities to hold positions of leadership and decision making in those institutions. In some mosques land churches, decisions made usually discriminate women.
5. Work place: The socialization process in the community has effects on the community has effects on the gender division of labour for boys and girls. Girls are marginalized from participating in education and decision making activities.
Major Effects of Gender Discrimination
The values and attitudes that society holds for boys and girls have adverse effects on women. Generally gender discrimination in national development has serious implications as follows:
1. With reference to sex there is unequal distribution of powers in all spheres of social life as in politics, economics, military and social sector.
2. Women continue to be left out in areas of development.
3. Women continue to face violence and aggression as they do not have any economic power base to support themselves.
4. Girls lack the spirit of competition in class, leading to poor performance in school work.
5. There are very few women at the managerial and decision–making levels.
CULTURE AND REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH
There are relationship between culture and reproductive health of the given society. The cultural systems of life can be used to relate how far a society upholds reproductive health as a vital term or issue to every society. This is because people are naturally engaged in production. So reproduction needs a great care and attention so as to make it go smoothly. Reproductive health can be boosted or undermined by a society depending on the nature of culture. There are some cultural practices which are always degrading provision of social health services which are professional such as the local medicines which are not professional such as the local medicines which are not professionally proved.
Reproduction means the process of giving out a newly born-off spring which resembles their parents. Reproductive health ensures people satisfactory and safe sexual life with capability of reproducing deciding when, how, why and also the ability to decide how many children to be obtained and the ability to be free from sexual transmitted disease like gonorrhea, HIV, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PIV) which damages the reproductive system.
The definition of reproductive health includes:
1. Knowledge of reproductive system, its functions and processes.
2. Men and Women are informed of and have access to safe effective, affordable and acceptable methods of regulating fertility.
3. People have access to health care services which include prevention and treatment of infertility reproductive tract infection and sexually transmitted infections and sexually transmitted infections.
4. Promotion of mutual, respectful and fair gender relations.
5. People are free to practice family planning.
Necessary reproductive health services
The following are some of the reproductive health services necessary to the individual in the family and community:
- Maternal clinics, child vaccinations and immunization.
- Birth control by using contraceptive methods such as drugs devices and operations.Lack of reproductive health services can lead to severe consequences. For example, many children could die due to lack of immunity against curable diseases. Moreover, many women could die during pregnancy or soon after giving birth. Tanzania is one of those countries in the world whose birth rates are very high. It is currently estimated to be growing at the rate of 2-8 percent. A high birth rate affects the development of31the country negatively. Non-proportional increase of people to the rate of economic growth hinders meaningful development.
This is because there will be more months to feed than what is produced. Similarly, there will be more children to take to school.
Advantages of Reproductive Health Education
Reproductive health is very essential to everyone in the society. The following are some advantages of reproductive health education:
1. Prevention of sexually transmitted infections (STI‟s) including
2. Prevention of HIV/AIDS. Unwanted pregnancies.
3. Promotion of gender rights and equality.
4. Improvement of women‟s safety during pregnancy and childbirth.
5. Regulation of one‟s fertility.
6. Prevention of major child diseases.
7. Strengthening the management of infertility.
8. Identification of reproductive tract infection and seeking their appropriate treatment.
9. It ensures healthy motherhood, steady ad controlled population growth.
Initiation ceremonies include “Jando and Unyago” female genital mutilation and initiation ceremonies. These have been hindering reproductive health due to the fact that they are carried unsafely; like using one knife for circumcising the entire population. For the case of female genital mutilation several disasters can arise, such as lose of much blood and development of scars which may lead to severe pains during delivery.
Cultural values that encourage bearing many children
Family planning in most societies is not observed due to some cultural norms like belief system which is based on religion and prestige. For the case of religion some societies believe that each child is born with its luck, and that is the blessings from God. Also they stand on the notion that32God commanded people to bear children and fill the world. Thus, family planning is seen as the sin against God and the one who does so is sinning. Other societies believed that to have many children is the sign of great abilities in reproduction and are more fit in reproducing. Due to that case reproductive health is limited and obstacle and the society concerned.
Female genital mutilation: this causes prolonged bleeding during and after the mutilation. It also disturbs the natural vaginal elasticity during delivery due to the scar left after mutilation. It also reduces sexual pleasure during mating.
Cultural Practices Affecting Women and Reproductive Health
We made some explanation on how women have been treated in our societies. Women have been at a disadvantage almost in all societies in the past. Many developing countries in Africa and Tanzania in particular have been affected negatively by had cultural practices. These include those habits of marriage, foods eating, and the practice of women mutilation, dowry payment, inheritance and excluding women from the consumption of certain foods.
We made a detected account of these practices in Book One and Book Three of this series. We need not say much about them in this book. However, we can touch some of them briefly in this text.
a) Habits of Marriage
In most African societies, there has been the practice of getting married to a woman by first fulfilling the condition of paying what is called bride- price. This price has stood as a payment paid for buying a commodity. Bride price paying has therefore acted as an enslaving factor for women. Two examples can help us to get a good picture of this cultural practice. A Sukuma woman married to a man with dowry of say twenty cattle, when she gives birth to a baby she compensates for the cattle given as bride price from her husband. If it is a baby girl the amount of cattle as compensation is a bit higher than a baby boy.
Usually it was at the ratio of 5:4 until the amount of cattle paid is exhausted then the woman is counted liberated. If she wants to divorce for unbearable causes, she would be needed to repay the cattle in spite of her time spent with the husband and her labour in producing whatever agricultural products or any other material gains that she has contributed to the wellbeing of her family. In other tribes particularly pastoral communities they have no regard to whatever the wife has contributed to the wellbeing of her family. If she is divorced, she will have to repay whatever amount of cattle was given to her father.
Habit of food eating: In some tribes women are forbidden to eat certain types of food. The Wakerewe tribe in Mwanza puts a taboo forbidding woman to eat goat meat, eggs and dogfish. Such cultural customs were contributing to the poor health of women especially during pregnancy or nursing a baby.
b) Decision Making
There has always been the cultural practice of excluding women in decision making in important domestic, economic and political issues. Women have been regarded as being unable to give good ideas on certain socioeconomic issues like marriage, education and the domestic budget.
The government of Tanzania in realizing the social status of women and on the basis of the Declaration of the Human Rights Charter together with the Beijing Declaration of 1955 has made some attempts to improve the status of women. Parliament has enacted laws to give women right to own property in land. It is now possible for women to own land during marriage or inherit land after her husband‟s death.
In addition, to the above explanations, the following are the problems facing women in Tanzania:
1. Poor health. This is due to the focus of the society that women should bear many children something that tends to weaken their health.
2. Poor diet and little food.
3. Lack of education.
4. Too much work. Women work harder and for many hours than men.
5. Maltreatment from their husbands. Some societies administer punishment over women. This cause physical injuries and psychological hopelessness.
Customs that Lead to the HIV/AIDS and STIs
HIV stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus and AIDS stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. Getting HIV infection leads to a weakened immune system. This makes a person with HIV to a group of illnesses that a healthy person without a virus would be unlikely34to be affected by opportunistic infections HIV/AIDS is a killer disease which has no cure or vaccine.
The following are cultural practices that lead to the spread of HIV/AIDS and STI‟s:
1. Female genital mutilation (women circumcision) can lead to the spread of HIV because the instruments used are nit sterilized and are used by the whole group being circumcised. Most of the instruments used are knives, razor blades, and pairs of scissors or any other sharp tools.
2. Some tribes cut tribal marks on parts of the body of their kids claiming that they want to shed off the dirty blood. Also the instruments used are not changed so they can spread HIV to the kids.
3. Inherited widows may contact or spread HIV from to men who inherit them.
4. Certain traditional dances are accompanied by alcohol drinking which can draw men and women into sexual intercourse. Such practices may cause the spread of HIV.
5. Local traditional midwives who are not well trained may spread HIV/AIDS to both mother and the newly born baby due to using unsterilized instruments.
6. Polygamy may also be a potential cause of HIV/AIDS. Once one of the wives get HIV/AIDS all of them will also get it.
7. Forced marriage can also create problems where someone is forced to be married to certain man or woman who may have unfortunately been infected with one of HIV/AIDS.
Impact of the Negative Aspects of our Customs
a) Female genital mutilation (women Circumcision) can lead to:
1. Prolonged breeding during and after the mutilation.
2. Disturbance of the natural vaginal elasticity during delivery due to the scar left after the mutilation.
3. Reduction of sexual pleasure during sexual intercourse.
4. Spread of sexual transmitted infections (STI‟s) because the instruments used are not sterilized and are used by the whole group being circumcised.
5. Death because of excessive bleeding and STI‟s such as HIV/AIDS.
b) Gender biases can lead to:
1. Unequal distribution of powers in a community.
2. Women being left out in areas of development.
3. Lack of sprint of competition hence poor performance.
4. Few women in managerial and decision making levels.
5. Violence and aggression.
c) Beliefs and practice of witchcrafts can lead.
1. Transmission of STI‟s especially when male witchdoctors demand to hold sexual intercourse with their clients their clients as a cure for some diseases.
2. Despise modern health services and rely on local herbs some of which do not cure.
3. Family conflict.
4. Unnecessary deaths, etc.
d) Polygamy can lead to:
1. Rapid population increase.
2. Transmission of STI‟s.
3. Increase of street children.
e) Inheritance of wives (widow) can lead to:
1. Contact of STI‟s including the HIV/AIDS.
2. Conflicts between the inherited wife and the former/original wife of the husband.
f) Early marriages can lead to:
1. Long difficult labour because of immaturity of the reproductive organs.
2. Sometimes babies are born too early (premature).
3. Blocked births which may damage the uterus and rapture the bladder and can even cause death to the victim.
g) Forced marriages may lead to:
1. Family conflicts
2. Contact of sexually transmitted Infections (STIs).
h) Bride price can lead to:
1. Violation of human rights to women who are sometimes treated as bought objects.
2. Forced marriages conducted by parents after receiving dowry from the man intending to marry their daughter.
3. Crimes, like beating of the bride when she refuses to obey.
Ways and Actions to be Taken against Negative Aspects of Cultural Values
These ways and actions can be discussed all two levels namely, strategies to liberate the whole society.
a) Strategies to liberate women in Tanzania
1. The formation of women‟s social organizations. This will help them to have a collective bargaining power for their deprived rights. Through these organizations, women can ask for assistance from the government or donors in order to enable them to open various projects. Women‟s social organizations in Tanzania are like; WAMA (Wanawake na Maendeleo), TAWLA, TAMWA, etc.
2. The governments have to ensure that women receive equal opportunities as men in all social, political and economic issues.
3. The government should commit itself to the prohibition of all cultural practices and customs that oppress women like the female genital mutilation, polygamy, forced and early marriage etc.
4. Educating men to put off the idea that they are created superior to women.
5. To establish special programs for improving life standards of women especially in the rural areas.
6. Improve the rural technology. To provide women with modern working facilities ploughs, milling machines.
7. To inculcate a sense of awareness to all members of society that, women are able people and can do everything like men. Therefore, they have capabilities of thinking and performing like men. This will stop old perceptions of looking women as enabled people.
8. To improve and increase the education opportunities to women. If education opportunities will be improved to women, the development of the country will increase. Also the whole society will be almost educated if we refer to the slogan that says “When you educate women, you educated the whole society” To date, education opportunities to all in Tanzania is positively implementation , since the government has increased the chances for girls and women in education sector. For example there is a programme of enrolling more women students at the University of Dar es salaam who have been learning science subject when they were at secondary school (Advanced level).
9. To improves access to the resources such as land, the situation which is still difficult to some societies in which women have no right to inherit resources such as land? However some societies have managed to reduce this problem. For example, in many tribes of Tanzania women have now rights to own property and equal access to natural resources.
10. To participation in political matters and other economic activities. To justify this, the government has added more than 15% special seats in parliament for women in order to bring about gender balance and equal control of resources.
11. To make people aware with all things which cause gender inequality? In general, the world is still emphasizing much on women empowerment through different forums and organization which try to defend the rights of people such as human rights.
b) Strategies to liberate the entire society
1. The entire society should be enlightened on the bad impacts of the negative aspects of our socio-cultural values.
2. The government should enact strict laws against those who entertain the negative cultural values like the practice of witchcraft, the killing of twins, the handicapped and albinos.38
3. The government should promote and encourage good leadership especially at the village government level, where problem related to the socio-cultural values are mostly experienced.
PROMOTION AND PRESERVATION OF OUR WORTHY CULTURAL VALUES
After their independence, African countries took steps to promote and preserve their culture at national level. Efforts were taken by African governments, churches and communities to reach this goal. Why national culture? This has been so because a national culture is a symbol or identity of a nation. It comprises things such as language, art, science, technology, education, economy, politics, beliefs and values. The values are expressed in songs, dances and ceremonies.
In addition, culture s dynamic. That is, it changes with time t suit the current social, political and economic situation of a nation. No two nations can have an identical culture. In order to promote the Tanzanian national culture soon after getting independence the Ministry of National Culture and youth was established in 1962. Over the years, it changed names and departments although its basic objectives remained unchanged. Its major departments are:
- The National Kiswahili Council
- The National Sports Council.
- The National Festivals and State Celebrations Councils
- The National Department of Museums
- Antiquities and national Archives
- The National Film Censorship Board and
- The Department of Arts and Crafts.
Promotion and preservation of national culture is a combination of efforts made by people under their government to enhance growth and existence of the culture which has to be practiced in the nation. Efforts towards the Promotion and preservation of culture have been going on in Tanzania since 1962. In 1962 the Ministry of National Culture and Youth was formed.
The objectives remained unchanged. Cultural promotion has resulted into the following:
- Kiswahili to become the national language.39
- In 1967 the government introduced Education for Self-reliance policy which used education to transmit African values.
- Local/ national styles of dressing were officially adopted.
|Sports and Games|
Importance of Promoting and Preserving our Worthy Cultural Values
Importance of promoting and Preserving our national Culture are such as:
1. To maintain our national identity.
2. To provide a foundation for stable governance.
3. To maintain our useful value and systems of life.
4. To protect our country from cultural colonization through cultural globalization.
5. To maintain our cultural heritage.
6. To create a sense of nation hood and promote cohesion in the daily life of Tanzanians.
The Roles of Different Groups and Institutions in Promoting and Preserving our Cultural Values
a) The National Kiswahili Council
The National Kiswahili Council was established on August 9, 1967. The council has many roles; for example it;
1. Promotes and develops Kiswahili as a national language. The Council enables Kiswahili to be sued for all national communication. Today, Kiswahili is spoken and understood by almost all Tanzanians. The First President of Tanzania Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere used Kiswahili to unite the whole of Tanzania as a nation.
2. Coins new words from local languages as well as foreign languages to make Kiswahili keep pace with the changes, which keep occurring, in the Tanzanian society.
3. Encourages educated Africans to participate in Kiswahili literature and writing to remove the major weaknesses of colonial education. The latter emphasized foreign languages such as English and French but despised or downplayed Kiswahili and other local languages.
4. Works with other bodies in the country that are devoted to the promotion and preservation of Kiswahili.
5. Encourages high standards of Kiswahili and establishes standard Kiswahili for educational and technical purposes.
b) The National Sports Council
The National Sports Council was established in 1967. The roles of this council are:
To develop, promote and control all amateur sports in the country. The Council does this in co-operation with voluntary amateur sports organizations. Amateur sports are sports played for enjoyment, not for monetary gains.
In order to carry out this, the National Sports Council does the following:
1. Provides training to staff members.
2. Grants or gives aid to national sports associations or organizations.
3. Provides play fields and other sports facilities.
4. Provides sports equipment and other sports items necessary for international sports competitions and festivals. In so doing, national sportsmen and sportswomen gain experience. The council through sports stimulates and fosters friendly relations with other nations. The Council stimulates interest in all sports at all levels in the nation. And finally, the council plans general policy for the promotion of sports.
5. Provides medals, diplomas, certificates, or any other rewards to competent people who deserve them.
6. Provides scholarship for the training of coaches and sports administrators.Advises the responsible minister on all matters related to ports.
c) The National Festival and State Celebrations Council
The Council facilities celebration of important national occasions. The council ensures that the nation does not engage in meaningless and unending celebrations. The council deals with national public holidays. These national occasions are celebrated with demonstrations, speeches, songs, dances, feasts, sports and games. There are religious holidays as well, which are public holidays but are not under this Council. The holidays include Christmas for the Christians and Idd for the Muslims. Prayers, sports, games, dance and feasts mark these religious holidays.
d) Department of Museum, Antiquities and National Achieves
These departments preserve the national heritage in the form of cultural treasures and writings. Hence, they strongly stimulate cultural enthusiasm among the people.
1. Museums; There are national as well as regional museums in Tanzania. They provide a safe and permanent place for preserving national traditions, customs and works of art. They serve as cultural and recreational centres for the people of the United Republic of Tanzania. They are also important as attractions for visitors or tourists. They serve as educational institutions for current and future generations. The national museums are supposed to be research centres. Information from such centres can be used for educational purposes and in publishing books and pamphlets.
2. Antiquities are important objects that have existed for a very long time. They include remains of ancient buildings such as mosques, churches, place and tombs. Tanzania is very rich in antiquities, for example, the ruins of old buildings found at Kaole (near Bagamoyo), Kilwa and Mtwara – Mikindani. The ancient bomas found in Dar es Salaam and some district and regional headquarters. The department was formed to preserve these objects, which are called antiquities.
3. The national Archives; This organ has one main role that is, to censor films before they are shown. To censor a film means to examine it and decide whether it is not effective. This has been very difficult with the introduction of TV stations and videos. Hence the Tanzanian society at large and every person should have moral obligation of seeing that scandalous films are not shown. Films are required to promote national culture, education and development. Therefore this organ and every Tanzanian is supposed to ban films, videos, or pornographic pictures, which promote bad behaviour such as murder, violence, robbery, gangsterism, prostitution, drug-abuse and racial segregation.42
4. The Council of Arts and Crafts; African countries through their government and communities encourage creativity in art and crafts. Each country identifies its cultural needs. Then, art and crafts are applied to serve those needs. The main purpose is to make art and crafts servants of man. They are supposed to be tools to help. Africans understand and shape their societies according to their collective needs. That is the meaning of creativity.
e) Educational Institutions
Role of education in Cultural Transmission
After independence, African governments, church and African communities improved the educational system, inherited from colonial masters, to suit African national culture. There were various reasons why the education system African culture. There were various reasons why the education system inherited at independence needed improvement. These are:
i) The aims and content of the colonial education promoted the values and intersects of the colonizers.
ii) The colonial education system was intended only to train the Africans for clerical and junior distractive posts.
iii) The education system emphasized theoretical leaning. It ignored practical learning hence African students lacked skills and creativity.
Therefore, African governments, churches and African communities took various steps to improve education such as:
1. To integrate existing educational facilities;
2. To expand education at primary, secondary, college and university level;
3. To adopt African and Euro-African national languages as the languages of instruction in schools, colleges, and universities. In primary schools and Teachers Colleges , while English is the medium of instruction in the English medium primary schools, all secondary schools ,colleges and universities;
4. To reshape the content of the curriculum to make it more relevant to the needs of the growing African nations. Educational policies were established in most of the African countries so as to:
5. Enable Africans understand their responsibilities in Africa societies;43
6. Design and implement suitable educational programmes , that is, Africans should be able to identify their problems and solve them intelligently;
7. Train Africans to get and preserve knowledge, wisdom and experiences;
8. Get the Africans to pass on the knowledge, wisdom and experiences to future generations.
9. Get and teach the best from other educational systems which influence African lives; these are the traditional African systems and the foreign ones;
10. Merge orcombine theoretical and practical knowledge; in Tanzania, for example, the policy of socialism and self-reliance was introduced by Mwalimu Julius Nyerere and to make it practicable, education for self-reliance was introduced in schools.
11. This is the way to maximize the impact of knowledge on the present and future societies of Africa.
f) Mass Media
African countries use the radio as a way of transmitting their culture. To date in Tanzania, there are a good number of radio stations which presents programs with cultural matters.
Problems Facing the Promotion of our Cultural Values
Despite all attempts made by the government to build/promote and preserve national culture, still there are some problems which act as hindrance. These which act as hindrances these factors include the following:
1. Colonial legacy: Because of colonial legacy many Tanzanians are not confident in creating things. They are still having the mental attitude of assimilation and association together with the administrative and the education systems. Through all these colonial systems, Africans were forced to inferior.
2. Low level of science and technology: The capacity of production material and morally is doomed in Tanzania because much of technology is brought from abroad i.e. Science and technology dependence.
3. Ignorance: A great number of people do not know how to read and write. Thus the people are limited to their environment. They can hardly effectively control their environment. Hence, they are trapped by the environment which hinders the promotion of their culture and civilization.
4. Bad leadership: Most colonialism hence they have a low standard of leadership. They cannot establish concrete police to promote our cultural values. And even for those who can do so fail to make follow - ups. In this policies remain on shelves.
5. Lack of enough funds.This issue hinders proper and adequate facilitation to leaders and other people who decided to do research or engage in promoting national culture.
6. Globalization: The growing of social interaction among people of different culture history, the growing of social interaction among people of different culture history , origin and different beliefs has contributed much on hindering the promotion of national culture. An example can be experienced on Tanzania traditional songs and ceremonies like the wedding song burial songs, the mode of these ceremonies the nature of the religions belief system and the like.
Solution to Problems Arising in the Process of Promoting and Preserving our Cultural Values
Tanzania since independence has been struggling to her level best to promote and preserve the national culture. The following are some of proposed solutions to problems arising in the process of promoting and preserving our cultural values.
1. Reduce excessive dependency on foreign science and technology and instead implement the local technology available.
2. Observing national festivals.
3. To provide education on the importance of importance of culture.
4. Allocate sufficient funds in research development for national culture.
5. Forming youth /peer social sporting and civic groups and organizations to promote our culture.
6. Integrate culture with work.
7. Formulating good policies that promote culture.
8. Impose strict laws, rules and regulation for those who despise our culture45
9. Formulating good policies that that promotes culture.
10. Impose strict laws, rules and regulation for those who despise our culture
11. Electing good leaders with cultural sense.
|Respecting and Helping Elders|
CULTURE OF PREVENTIVE CARE AND MAINTENANCE OF PERSONAL AND PUBLIC PROPERTY
It is important to keep the environment and buildings very clean and in good order. In this last part we shall see the progress and importance of up keeping of environment.
Meaning and Importance of Culture of Preventive Care and Maintenance of Personal and Public Property
Preventive maintenance can be defined as a system of planning maintenance and monitoring social cultural settings in a community, which involves inspection, followed by maintenance and modification which is necessary to make items and properties to use for a longer period.
Causes of Deterioration
The following are the main causes;
1. Lack of knowledge
2. People‟s attitudes
4. Disregard of public property
5. Lack of use of common sense
6. Laser faire attitude
The Procedure for Preventive care and Maintenance
People should be aware of their surroundings. Preventive care should be considered under the following:
2. The frequency of checkup and inspection.
3. Regional maintenance that minimizes the costs of up
4. keeping of buildings, furniture and mixtures.46
5. Regular maintenance that creates a conductive environment to users.
6. Institutions or public places should have a time table to ensure preventive care because people need it.
7. Regular care maintenance of existing buildings and facilities, so as to ensure and prolong the life span of buildings and equipment.
Factors for promotion and preservation of National Culture Matters which can promote the growth and existence of culture are:
1. National language that should be spoken by the people and used for instruction in schools.
2. Protection of handcrafts industries against foreign goods competition such as importation of unnecessary goods.
3. African artists like singers, dancers, poets should be assisted in composing and recording.
4. Popularization of local culture in mass media using-radio, television, videos, etc. The Tanzania media is doing a good job to promote our culture.
5. Commitment of leadership to promotion of national culture i.e. leaders should encourage people to practice the national cultural ways of life.
Consequences of Neglecting Timely Repair and Maintenance
1. Man-made objectives like building, roads, railways and property like books and domestic items need to be repaired immediately when damage occurs or when they wear out. Otherwise they will cost much if they are neglected.
2. Environmental degradation is mostly caused by deforestation, soil erosion, and water and air pollution. Land degradation caused by man should be avoided in order to conserve our environment.
3. Rampant destruction of private and public properties should not be encouraged officials should maintain them from time to time.
|The Impact of Neglecting our Culture|
PROMOTION OF LIFE SKILLS
Life skills refers to ways in which an individual applies mental ability to control or deal with oneself environment. It involves things like thinking, planning and implementation in order to solve life problems such as social, political, economic and cultural.
In dealing with cultural values and its associated problems, various life skills are highly needed for promoting and preserving culture. Examples of those skills are the skills of knowing and living with oneself, skills of knowing and living with others, and skills of making effective decisions. Social skills like relationship and friendship skills are very important in shaping an individual‟s behaviour and make one accepted in the community. These skills help an individual to relate well with others and become a responsible citizen.
Any society has establi8sh a foundation for its members to acquire various life skills which would lead them to. This is only possible if culture is integrated with education system, and work in the country. The big role players for promotion and preservation of national cultural values are the government, parents, schools, religion and NGOs.
LIFE SKILLS EDUCATION
Education is necessary is order to improve the quality of labour force. Though education, knowledge and skills are obtained to enable one produce more and better quality products. In agriculture for instance, one can produce more and better crop by using knowledge and skills obtained in agricultural lesson. Such knowledge and skills include proper use of fertilize irrigation methods, pest control condition methods, pest control, condition necessary for the growth of crops and weeding.
Education also offers life skills related to employment and income opportunities Technical or vocational training is provided so as to offer such knowledge and skills. People with such knowledge and skills can start their own businesses and in this way gain income.
Through health skills, one learns the different types of diseases and how to prevent them; one learns children care and family management, nutrition health and hygiene. This will improve the health of the learner and the society as a whole. Mother‟s knowledge on reproductive health and literacy in general has effects on fertility, infant and child mortality.
In short, life skills education can change an individual and the community to meet personal and national needs. This is because life skills education increases the individual‟s ability to be more productive.
Life skills constitute a knowledge and aptitude that are necessary with maximum efficiency and accuracy. One of the categories of life skills is critical thinking it uses skills such as reasoning inquiry, analysis, processing, flexibility and evaluation.
In problem solving, it is crucial to adhere problem solving techniques because are helpful as follows:
1. They help to tackle problems which seem to be complex.
2. They minimize conflicts, frustration and misunderstandings.
3. They help people to overcome limitations in human mental machinery for perception memory and inference.
4. They overcome constraints and inhibitions that limit the range of ones thinking.
5. They help analysts achieve their full potential.Problems vary from potential.Problems can be those concerns with adolescents, reproductive health, family life issues socio-economic issues or environmental issue steps in production solving process.
The process of problem components subjected to the type of problem in place. Steps for problem solving process include:
1. Definition of problem.
2. Problem analysis endevour
3. Generating possible solutions
4. Analyzation of the solutions and;
5. Selecting the best solution
How to Use Different Life Skills
In any society there are leaders who lead other people in a given community. These leaders can be measured on how confident and self-worth are they confidence and self-worth may help a leader build good relationship with other community members that result to team work spirit successful leadership trustfulness among est members in community hence development.
|Providing education in Kiswahili as a way of preserving our culture|