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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:'Our People Father, They Haven't Learned Yet': Music and Postcolonial Identities in Zimbabwe, 1980-2000
Author:Chikowero, Moses
Periodical:Journal of Southern African Studies
Geographic term:Zimbabwe
cultural policy
History and Exploration
Architecture and the Arts
Politics and Government
Economics and Trade
Abstract:Zimbabwean musicians have continued to struggle to earn a living and respect decades after ushering in the country's independence in song and dance in 1980. What they perceived as the root of their problem - an obstinate neocolonial cultural disposition deeply etched at the heart of the national ethos - is the subject of this article. Employing the currency of cultural nationalism, the musicians indicted the independence State's failure to appreciate the cultural and economic importance of the country's music. Similarly, they decried what they saw as a wider crisis of national consciousness among Zimbabweans, of which their own predicament as musicians was only one symptom. The article discusses the government's classification of musical instruments as luxury items, State patronage of musicians, the role of (oligopolistic) record companies, broadcasting policy, and radio and the struggle over popular music. It argues that ill-conceived music policy, or lack of it, not only seriously affected the development of indigenous music in Zimbabwe, but also set the stage for the playing out of bruising battles over the meanings of that music. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract, edited]