culture

Bata Drums

Tun ke ke tun ke! 

Sound familiar?

Maybe not when spelt out, but several Nigerians recognise the sound of a double membrane talking drum when heard.

Yoruba people have made great contributions to art, culture, and even spirituality, not just in Africa but also across the globe. People of Yoruba heritage are known for holding various traditions and practices, and one of them is their use of the double membrane talking drum, known as the Bata drum. The lively and engaging beats of Bata drums prompt listeners to move according to the rhythm. The sounds are exciting, stimulating, and just extraordinary!

"Is Our Notion of Education Correct?"

There appears to be a double standard cast on indigenous languages in relation to being “educated” in the Nigerian society. If one can read and write in English, but not in Yoruba or an indigenous language, one is considered as ‘educated’. The reverse is however not the case. If one can read and write in Yoruba or an indigenous language in Nigeria but cannot read and write in English, irrespective of possessing the similar levels of knowledge or attaining the same educational qualifications, one is considered inferior, illiterate and uneducated. Is this ideal however valid?

Gelede Masks

Some say that the Gelede tradition stemmed from some decisions made by Yemoja – the Orisa (deity) who is considered to be the mother of all Orisas, and the goddess of the Ogun Rivers and all water. Yemoja is said to have made an appeal to the Ifa oracle to help her resolve the difficulties she was having with conception. Through Ifa consultation, Yemoja was advised to participate in a sacrificial ceremony in which she would place wooden artefacts on her head and dance. As a result of the ritual, Yemoja became pregnant and birthed a male child who came to be known as ‘Efe’. She later birthed a female child who came to be known as ‘Gelede’.