Essence and Role of Africa’s Musical Arts Creations in Human Resource Development: An Educational Perspective

Prof. Sichalwe M. Kasanda


When music and musical arts are created, from an educational view point, it is for the purpose of contributing to the development of human resources, rather than for the sake of merely offering entertainment.  In this regard, the paper endeavours to unravel the role of music and musical arts in general, taking into account what unites Africa rather than what divides it.

Further, the paper examines the relationship between music and musical arts on one hand and, on the other, the socio-cultural contexts of their production, notably socialization, schooling and education.  The central theme of the presentation revolves around interrogation of the core business of Africa’s artistic musicality and how the latter harmonizes with the global initiatives, for which the issues of inclusiveness, exclusiveness and diversity are brought forth to bear.

Also of critical importance to the paper is the question of appreciating a common platform of understanding Africa’s musical and artistic reality as they pertain to implicit and explicit knowledge acquisition, production and development.

Accordingly, the presentation justifies the value of entertainment but not as linked to the monopoly of dance floor musical arts.  Rather, as connected to spiritual and moral-ethical upbringing, intellectual and aesthetical development, character building, identity affirmation and skilling of the citizenry.

The paper, in the final analysis, ends with a number of questions for debate and for further research.  For example: How have musical arts in Africa evolved (nature, structure and functions) from pre-independence to post-independence 21st century? To what extent is musical arts education contributing to moulding a new African learner and leader?  What are the expectations? What should possibly be the (espoused) operational relationship between Musical Arts and Education on one hand and, on the other, engineering science, technology, humanities, social sciences, language and communication and business studies?