It has always been bothersome to notice that majority of the younger
folks can no longer speak their native tongue properly (if at all).

Gone are the days when children (and adults) were proud of their
language and would even garnish their conversion with rich proverbial

When you observe children conversing these days, they usually converse
in English (even when among peers from the same ethnic group).

Clearly, the parents (and teachers, teachers are parents too) are not
helping matters.


Children being like clay in the hands of a potter, it is whatever
they observe , that they emulate.

It is the kind of food, language, dressing, music, religious doctrines
etc that the parents and neighbors bombard them with that they
assimilate into their life and run with.

Go to children’s school parties, children birthdays and observe the
genre of music, the dressing, hairdo… everything shrieks of foreign

Dressing in the full traditional regalia is mostly, nowadays, reserved
for marriages, burials and similar.

This post was actually inspired when it was noticed that all the
dresses spread on a clothesline (to dry) by a nubile twenty something
did not contain a single traditional dress! Not one, in close to
hundred pieces was a native dress!


Observe how those that attempt to speak their native language struggle
to express themselves and even interject their native words with
English ones. It would be funny if not because it is such a tragedy.

When we observe the Chinese and some other cultures, we easily observe
how they have carefully preserved their heritage.


But, in these climes, practically every facet of our lives has been
adulterated, and in fact being threatened with extinction.

Perhaps it is time to sit back and reexamine our stance to all things
foreign and see whether killing off our culture on the altar of
modernity, inanity and sophistication is worth our while and would
serve us well in the long run.

What makes a man or woman, Yoruba, Hausa, Ibo, or whatever other ethnicity?

If your dressing, language, food, what you drink and almost everything
else does not reflect your motherland, where then is your identity?

Food thought, and it is hoped you are all able to think coherently in
your native language?


  1. December 17, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    So true. Unfortunately we parents are to blame. We don’t speak our language with our children and we don’t encourage our dressing mode. If asked how many of us take our children along when we travel to the village or our hometown’ then answer will surprise everyone.

    Its a real shame.

    This is an indictment to all of us. Guilty as charged. But are we going to start making the necessary changes?

  2. Noni
    December 17, 2014 at 6:15 pm

    I kind of agree and don’t agree. Like DD I think the fault lies mostly with the parents not encouraging their children to speak their native tongue. As someone who is already bilingual, we don’t consider the disadvantage we are giving our children by being monolingual.

    Did you know it is easier to learn a third language when you’re already bilingual? But it’s also a generational thing. When most of us had a parent who didn’t speak English, we had to know how to speak our native language. I have a colleague who speaks fluent Urdu along with her husband, but their children don’t. Why? Both parents speak English fluently but their respective mothers aren’t fluent in English.

    As for clothes I honestly see nothing wrong when a person chooses not to wear traditional clothes. Their choice. Clothing doesn’t define me but I guess in a society where people judge you by appearances it may have credibility in some circles. Thankfully we have numerous options as to what we wear. So long as we’re comfortable with our choices, no shaking.

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