By Bode Duran
Alaafin of Oyo Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi 111 has said globalisation of cultural heritage has negative impacts on the nation’s culture as European adventurers undermined cultural heritage of peoples around the globe through colonisation, imperialism and globalisation.
“Cultural imperialism left the colonised in a state of cultural disorientation, which is vulnerable to cultural invasion. The most important far-reaching effect of cultural globalisation is the commer-cialisation of culture. Production distribution and consumption of cultural goods and services have become commodities along with the essentials of life. Music, food, clothes, fashion, art, sports images, etc are now sold in the market, imported and exported,” he said.
According to him, commercialisatiion of culture has a disturbing impact on the people of Nigeria. “For example, what was once an element of Nigeria’s cultural way of life has become a product, rather than something unique, which they have made to suit their specific needs and circumstances? Nigerian markets are increasingly bombarded with new images, new music, new clothes and new values.
“The impact is that the familiar and the old artefacts are being discarded. The fact is that these will be lost simply because they are not valued by global markets. This undermining of the peoples existing values and cultures has a corrosive impact on the sense of who we are, what we want and what we respect. The cumulative effect is a crisis of cultural confidence, combined with economic uncertainty and crime which global integration often brings, he added.
Today’s societies, the paramount ruler noted, are multi-culture in themselves, which encompass a multitude of varying ways of life and lifestyle, adding that most people are shaped by more than a single culture, which is brought about by globalisation.
He said: “In Nigeria due to the impact of globalisation on cultural norms, socialisation processes and values are affected. For instance some parents are no longer frowning at what the youths put on. The traditional pattern of subordinating when greeting an elder has changed to “hi”. Today, the use foreign language, English, has always been an important aspect of official language in Nigeria.
“Though there is high rate of illiteracy in the rural population, the use of our local languages has its limitations. Many elite families would like their children to learn English language better than their local language. Today, Nigerians use and read books written in foreign language faster and more fluently than those written in local languages. In Nigeria, cultural globalisation has impacted on the number of Movies produced by Nigeria Nollywood. Movies produced in English are much more than those performed and produced in Yoruba and other Nigerian languages”.
On the way forward Alaafinsuggested that the only remedy in ensuring cultural stability is for the agents of change (government) to repackage and re-inculcate absolute values through the use of libraries, mass media, and advanced information technologies to counter negative changes that are emerging today.
”Therefore very few human communities will neither want to reject technological changes or globalisation, nor will they want to return to the traditional pattern of community organisation especially now that they have evolved new pattern to suit their immediate needs”.
To him, ‘there is the need for the legal protection of the intangible cultural heritage, Government must revive traditional and popular forms of a people’s expression, incorporate programmes relating to traditional cultures, heritage and folklore in education curricular at all levels.’
Government, Oba Adeyemi said, should develop legislative protection for culture, heritage museums, archives, and libraries in the country.