Literacy Acquisition and Cultural Awareness: Folksongs as Strategy

  • E.A. Babalola


This paper examines Yoruba folksongs in the context of performance for the purpose of entertainment, and more important, as an educational strategy essentially geared towards moral and cultural development. It discusses how folksongs have remained a vigorous aspect of the dissemi nation of knowledge about popular music, oral poetry, theatre, and African philosophy. Extensive references are made to several Nigerian writers and artistes who have relied extensively on folksongs in (re)creating their art. This is largely illustrative of the popularity of the genre as an integral aspect of cultural heritage, as a crucial educational aid especially for young people, and as a vehicle for social cohesion in a multi-ethnic society like Nigeria. Folksong among the Yoruba of Western Nigeria, and among Africans generally, is thus simultaneously reflected as an artistic element and an indicator of mass culture in Africa.

(The Journal of Cultural Studies: 2001 3(2): 432-442)

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eISSN: 1595-0956