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Abstract

This chapter deals with the history of the sociolinguistic position of English in Ghana which is realized in the distinct new variety: Ghanaian EnglishGhanaian English (GhaE) and in its sub-categories: Ghanaian Pidgin EnglishGhanaian Pidgin English (GhaPEGhanaian Pidgin English) and Student PidginStudent Pidgin (Ghana) (SP). It is argued that these are mainly urban-driven. The statistics on the spread and competence of English and the repercussions of the linguisticlinguistics imbalance in the country as English is in contact and in competition with the over 50 local languages are considered. The attitude to and the dominance of English in the education system and the implications of these are also discussed. GhaE’s distinct phonology, lexical features and its structural tendencies are discussed. As GhaE moves ever further from the dominantdominant culture center the chapter speculates on the sociolinguistic implications of this shift and on whether a distinct sociolectal divide is being created.

In: Philosophical Foundations of the African Humanities through Postcolonial Perspectives
In: Philosophical Foundations of the African Humanities through Postcolonial Perspectives

Abstract

So far in the twenty-first century, those African universitiesuniversities, African that have achieved world-class status have done so at great expense: the cost is their preparedness to produce graduates who are ill-equipped and unmotivated to consider the impact of their work upon the quality of human life, unable to assess universalized recipes for progress inherited from an age when the benefits of scientific reasoning were presumed to be coextensive with the expansion of Anglo-European culture and interests. I explore the ambiguous role of the Internet, automated intelligence and digitalization of information in regimenting the process of knowledge productionknowledge production to serve a narrowly focused multinational elite business class. I demonstrate that research cartels and governmental-industrial-educational conglomerates perpetuate global ignorance about two thirds of the world’s populations. I explore how Africa-based intellectuals, located on the periphery of digital highways, are not cyber-entrapped and thereby enjoy an epistemic advantage for assessing the overall impact of science-for-profit upon the human family and the bio-sphere.

In: Philosophical Foundations of the African Humanities through Postcolonial Perspectives

Abstract

In this chapter I look at dancedance as a basis for the scholarly study of the human conditionhuman condition and as a main focus in African humanities research. I do so based on my experiences as a Ghanaian choreographerchoreography whose dance productions have catered to large audiences on national occasions and in the global arena. Dance productions make use of the core values, themes and concerns of contemporary society in order to express the underlying shared dimension of spiritual and moral values, to build upon cultural memory and identity. My choreographedchoreography performances draw on traditional forces of indigenous harmony and on forms of artistic expression in Ghanaian dance. They also integrate and juxtapose the varied ethnic traditions of our postcolonialpostcolonialism context. As I explore how I strive in my work to portray the struggles of inner postcolonialpostcolonialism cities, I also examine the payoffs of using dance theatretheatre as a medium for public educationeducation, behavioral transformation, and nation building.

In: Philosophical Foundations of the African Humanities through Postcolonial Perspectives

Abstract

Drawing on a social constructionist perspective to written scholarly communication, this chapter argues that training in academic writingacademic writing for students in higher educationeducation, university especially in second language contexts should go beyond emphasis on grammatical correctness and paragraphing strategies, and also focus on the rhetorical character of academic discourseacademic discourse together with the mastery of its communicative protocols. Using the University of Ghana as a reference point, the essay reviews a selection of accounts showing Ghanaian graduate students’ awareness of the protocols that govern academic discourses in scholarly writing. In consideration of their unique educational and socio-cultural circumstances, the chapter proposes strategies, from the pedagogical and institutional standpoints, aimed at increasing students’ awareness of the relevant communicative practicescommunicative practices that engender credibility and promote accountability.

In: Philosophical Foundations of the African Humanities through Postcolonial Perspectives

Abstract

Many Africans who became aware of their own musical traditions in the colonialcolonialism period and in the post-independence period of the cultural awakening did not undertake serious systematic research. They chose to recollect what theyethnomusicology already knew (e.g., about compositional models of music) or used such African materials as they could find to illustrate some theoretical issues or procedures in the Western tradition that they believed to have universal validity. Others turned to the pedagogical approach, developing courses of study by relying on secondary sources rather than their own original research. Knowledge shared through these approaches may have helped to combat prejudices held against African arts by some of their own colleagues and the Western world. It may also have provided a dimension of the arts that could be missing from the work of the scholar who treats music, for example, as a social or cultural fact, or as an object of formal analysis, and not as an art. However, a better approach is one based on a creative vision, anchored in consciousness of identity, and engaged in systematic documentation, classification and critical evaluation of cultural heritage in a manner that facilitates easy access to the materials and their dissemination.

In: Philosophical Foundations of the African Humanities through Postcolonial Perspectives

Abstract

The chapter examines four twentieth-century Ghanaian neo-traditional musicmusic, neotraditional, in Ghana genres (GaGa language, Akan, Dagomba, and EweEwe) that are rural/communal performance traditions but have integrated elements of urban popular music. As a result, they reflect and articulate both ethnic identity and socio-politicalpolitis processes related to contemporary city life. It is thus inappropriate to apply to these neo-traditional genres older eurocentriceurocentrism ‘modernizationmodernization’ models that advocate just one form of developmental change: westernizationwesternization. Rather, the four music styles demonstrate ‘multiple modernitiesmultiple modernities’ that reflect the unique character of their particular ethnic communities; they emerged in the context of urban-rural feedback, in line with more recent developmental theories; and their performers are not passive recipients of change emanating from the ‘centre’, but ‘cultural brokers’ who actively select elements of commercial popular performance suitable for their communal music-making. These genres thus provide a test case for the newer ‘liberation’ and ‘glocalizationglocalization’ developmental theories that focus on how people on the ‘periphery’ adapt imported Western norms and technologies to their own indigenous folkways and national culture.

In: Philosophical Foundations of the African Humanities through Postcolonial Perspectives
In: Philosophical Foundations of the African Humanities through Postcolonial Perspectives

Abstract

Five decades since Independence, the investigation and analysis of African identity is no longer the dominion of foreign educators. In consequence identity endures as a properly galvanizing focus for all humanities disciplines across the African continent. A comparison of Ghanaian and Nigerian seminal scholarly works reveals glaring discrepancies between the realities of African religious identity and images promulgated by British colonialcolonialism experts which are sustained to this day. African classicists and theologians are obliged to correct erroneous contrasts between ancient Greek doctrine, ChristianityChristianity, and traditional Akan beliefs about divinity and personhood. Likewise, in sociology and anthropologyanthropology the foreign gaze perpetuates misimpressions of African community. Wiredu concludes with a valuable digest of his seminal insights into the contrast between politicalpolitis consensusconsensus as normative agreement, and politicalpolitis consensus as a collective decision to produce policy that embraces conflicting ideals. Thus he highlights important contrasts between indigenous African systems of democraticdemocracy governance, and modern pretensions of civic participation through multiparty electoral politicspolitics.

In: Philosophical Foundations of the African Humanities through Postcolonial Perspectives
In: Philosophical Foundations of the African Humanities through Postcolonial Perspectives