Journal of Humanities https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh <p><em>Journal of Humanities</em> is a scholarly and peer-reviewed journal of the Faculty of Humanities at Chancellor College, University of Malawi. The journal aims to foster critical and theoretical debates in the areas of classics, fine and performing arts, communication, literature and orature, linguistics, theology and philosophy. The journal publishes original research articles, scholarly opinions, and review articles. Priority is given to articles focusing on East, Central and Southern Africa. JH has a pluralistic and non-partisan approach.</p> en-US © 2017 The Authors. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. jheditorinchief@cc.ac.mw (Dr Emmanuel Ngwira) deanofhumanities@cc.ac.mw (Chancellor College Dean of Humanities) Mon, 30 May 2022 07:54:12 +0000 OJS 3.1.2.4 http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss 60 Foreword - Malawi meets China: Thought systems and cultural exchange https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225826 <p>No Abstract.</p> Fei Xu, Yamikani Ndasauka Copyright (c) https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225826 Mon, 30 May 2022 00:00:00 +0000 Retrospect and Prospect of Sino-Africa Cultural Exchange in the 21st century https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225830 <p>This article combs through the history of Sino-Africa cultural exchanges since the founding of the People’s Republic of China by summarising and&nbsp; discussing the characteristics of Sino-Africa cultural exchanges in the first 20 years of this century. These characteristics include language, academic&nbsp; and think tank, literary and artistic groups and non-governmental cultural businesses. This paper prospects and proposes ideas to promote cultural&nbsp; exchanges between China and Africa. Among these proposals, Sino-Africa cultural exchanges should focus on balanced development between&nbsp; regions, strengthen non-governmental exchanges, promote cooperation and exchanges between universities and think tanks of both sides and&nbsp; promote the development of industrialisation and marketisation. Cultural exchanges have essential strategic significance for Sino-Africa&nbsp; cooperation and are a long-term measure to enhance the overall Sino- Africa cooperation and safeguard the interests of the development of both&nbsp; parties.</p> You Yonghong Copyright (c) https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225830 Mon, 30 May 2022 00:00:00 +0000 Aesthetic and Functional Exploration of Chitenje as an African Cultural Icon https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225833 <p>While appealing to ideas in iconography, in general, and the Objectivist aesthetics of Ayn Rand, and Sigmund Freud’s concept of the fetish, in&nbsp; particular, the study makes an exploration of the Chitenje as a versatile – if not the most versatile - African cultural artefact. The main thrust of the&nbsp; exploration concerns the Chitenje’s aesthetic, role, and economic significance among Africans, generally, and Malawians, in particular. The study’s&nbsp; major postulation is that Chitenje’s enduring and universal aesthetic, role, and social appeal among Africans, positions it firmly as an icon. Alongside&nbsp; the drum, regional staple foods, and liquor, it is arguably one of the most significant African cultural artefacts and critical drivers of&nbsp; African economies. However, due to this now cultural item’s aesthetic and fabric quality challenges, there is a real risk of it losing its iconic status and&nbsp; falling by the wayside not so many years in future – and that will be regrettable. To meet this threat, Chitenje’s central social and economic&nbsp; place merit it as an area worth investing in win-win partnerships among African fine artists and designers, the African continent, and its cultural,&nbsp; political, and economic partners China.</p> Damazio Mfune-Mwanjakwa Copyright (c) https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225833 Mon, 30 May 2022 00:00:00 +0000 Umunthu as an Undergirding Philosophy of Education for Malawi: Lessons from Confucianism https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225834 <p>This paper is a comparative analysis of an African indigenous philosophy of Umunthu and China’s Confucianism to propagate for the setting of&nbsp; Umunthu as an undergirding philosophy of Education in Malawi. The study is placed within the Reconstructionist Theory. This theory propagates for&nbsp; integrating traditional culture with demands of modernisation, thereby demonstrating the relevance of indigenous knowledge in the modern&nbsp; Malawian society. The study employs a historical narrative approach to capture the context of colonial education and its influence on the philosophy&nbsp; of education in post-independence Africa. The study also utilises a comparative and evaluative design of the philosophy of education in&nbsp; contemporary Malawi and relates it to the existence of Confucianism in Chinese and other East Asian education systems for millennia. This&nbsp; demonstrates the potential of a South-South engagement in indigenous knowledge production between China and Malawi.</p> Beaton Galafa Copyright (c) https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225834 Mon, 30 May 2022 00:00:00 +0000 The Book of Changes: Understanding China from Traditional Chinese Philosophy and History https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225835 <p>Confucianism, Buddhism and Taoism are the main characteristics of Chinese traditional thoughts and philosophies. However, <em>The Book of Changes,</em> also called Yi Jing or Zhou Yi, had been the original Chinese thought system earlier than Confucianism, Buddhism and Taoism. It can be precisely&nbsp; traced back to at least 3,000 years ago. <em>The Book of Changes</em> has profoundly influenced Chinese philosophy, thought and culture. Taoism originated&nbsp; from <em>The Book of Changes</em>, and Confucianism derives important ideological values from it. Although not the author of this thought&nbsp; system, Confucius studied <em>The Book of Changes</em> and made essential contributions to develop it. This paper discusses the development history of&nbsp; <em>The Book of Changes</em> thought and some of its key concepts. The paper also discusses the history and religious attitudes of the Chinese people.&nbsp; These are the essentials to understanding China and its culture.</p> You Yonghong Copyright (c) https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225835 Mon, 30 May 2022 00:00:00 +0000 A Comparative Study of Malawian and Chinese Policies on Girls’ Education https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225837 <p>This study aims to analyse and compare education laws and policies instituted by Malawi and Chinese governments towards addressing issues&nbsp; affecting girls education. The study utilises document analysis. The following documents were analysed; the Malawi Growth and Strategy papers, I,&nbsp; II and III, the Malawi National Gender Policy, the Malawi National Education Policy, and the National Education Sector Plan (2008-2017). In addition,&nbsp; the following policy documents were analysed: The Education Law of the PRC (1995), the Compulsory Education Law of the PRC (1986/2006), the&nbsp; Teachers’ Law of the PRC (1994), the China’s National Plan for the Medium- and Long-Term Education Reform (2010-2020), and the 2015 White&nbsp; Paper on Gender Equality and Women Development in China. Results of the study indicate that in both countries, both long-term and short-term&nbsp; policies have included provisions aimed at improving girls’ education. The study proposes that learning from the PRC, the Malawi government&nbsp; should make education compulsory in the Education Law. In addition, there is a need to sensitise all education stakeholders of the critical policies&nbsp; and laws governing education in Malawi.&nbsp;</p> Jim Chatambalala Copyright (c) https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225837 Mon, 30 May 2022 00:00:00 +0000 Framing the China-Malawi Story: A Content Analysis of Stories Published by Nation Publications in Malawi https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225838 <p>Since China and Malawi established diplomatic ties in 2008, China-Malawi bilateral relations feature regularly and prominently in the Malawian media. The local media have shown interest from the controversy surrounding how Malawi dumped Taiwan in favour of China to how the two countries are currently conducting their diplomatic relations. This study seeks to analyse how and why one of Malawi’s leading media houses, the privateowned Nation Publications Limited (NPL), reports the China-Malawi story. Two hundred twenty-one reports on China-Malawi bilateral relations in news stories, features, and opinion articles were collected from four NPL news platforms, namely The Nation, Weekend Nation, Nationon Sunday and Nation Online. Each media report was examined thoroughly using content analysis to examine how NPL employs the five popular media frames of conflict, attribution of responsibility, morality, economic and human interest when the media house reports the bilateral relations between Malawi and China. The findings show that NPL mainly uses the economic frame while morality is the least used. The results&nbsp; further reveal that NPL frames the China-Malawi story to promote a meaningful win-win scenario between Malawi and China.</p> Temwani Mgunda Copyright (c) https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225838 Mon, 30 May 2022 00:00:00 +0000 ‘Nudity’ as a Strategy of Cultural Preservation among Ingoma Dancers of Mzimba District https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225839 <p>Nativists worldwide cry over the past that has been overtaken by the fast-changing world. In the middle of cultural diversity brought by&nbsp; lobalisation, some cultural adherents encourage ‘nudity’ as one of the strategies for decolonising the minds of the indigenous people because nativism involves&nbsp; “return to the indigenous practices and cultural forms as they existed in the pre-colonial societies” (Ashcroft et al., 2000 159). Although some pro-&nbsp; modernists think that ‘nudity’ relegates humanity to carnivals, beasts or cannibals, some cultural enthusiasts have maintained their traditional&nbsp; attire, especially cultural events. For example, one of the cultural events in Malawi involves Ingoma, a Ngoni warrior dance. This paper argues for&nbsp; the importance of traditional attire and ‘nudity’ in the service of identity formation and preservation of culture. Using Bakhtin’s idea of the&nbsp; carnivalesque, the paper argues that the carnival culture presented through the ‘nudity’ of Ingoma dancers is employed as a celebration of&nbsp; liberation from colonial culture.&nbsp;</p> Albert Mtungambera Harawa Copyright (c) https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225839 Mon, 30 May 2022 00:00:00 +0000 Throwing away the Bathwater and Saving the Baby: Chinua Achebe’s Okonkwo and Qu Yuan of the Dragon-Boat Festival https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225840 <p>This paper compares two cultural personages, namely Okonkwo in Chinua Achebe’s defining book entitled Things Fall Apart, and Qu Yuan (or Chu Yuan), a character at the centre of the Duanwu Festival (the Dragon Boat Festival). An analysis of both characters shows them to be consummate&nbsp; patriots but who are let down by the larger community of their time. Using a comparative anthropological approach drawn from John Mbiti’s adumbration of an “African” worldview, explicitly referring to African attitudes towards suicide, and Sing Lee and Arthur Kleinman’s views regarding suicide as sometimes legitimate resistance in Chinese culture, the paper looks at their similarities and differences. On the one hand, the paper&nbsp; argues that an unqualified celebration of Qu Yuan could be problematic for some sections of African audiences. On the other hand, a sweeping&nbsp;&nbsp; condemnation of Okonkwo on account of his suicide amounts to throwing away the baby together with the bathwater.</p> Damazio Mfune-Mwanjakwa Copyright (c) https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jh/article/view/225840 Mon, 30 May 2022 00:00:00 +0000