If the data is associated with collective memory, one should be aware of that. Instructional Resources and aik no longer is the library primarily a depository of books, nor the librarian mainly a caretaker and custodian. The profession is in a stage of great transformation. According to carol kearney, the librarian of old is being transformed into a curriculum planner, and a media specialist, significant in the use of a wide range of resources such as computer generated programs, and a wide range of internet derived resources, including virtual museums. Audiotapes retain their appeal, and, so do more conventional resources. Given the importance of Oral Tradition, both in research methodology, and in information gathering, the audio tape probably remains the most important resource of all.
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The most relevant kind of poetry for indigenous knowledge research, of the kind emphasized in this paper, seems to be praise poems, poetic invocations for traditional healing, and poetry expressing deep thought and philosophy. To tap the resources associated with akan Oral Tradition, one must understand and identify the various specialists associated with the enterprise, such as minstrels, masters of ceremony, royal drummers, royal horn blowers, spokesmen of the king, the funerary priests of the king, the king's carrier. There are important ground rules for researchers into indigenous knowledge systems who utilize oral Tradition. At a preliminary stage, researchers must be fully sensitive to the status of the provider of information, his or her stake in the system and the various versions of the traditional explanation given. Preliminary questions should be asked about the ethnic identity of the group or community associated with the orally shared information. There should be a clear understanding of whether or not the orally transmitted information is myth, legend, proverb, chant, praise song or of unidentified or unidentifiable origin. The researcher should determine whether the information has relevance for researching genealogy, traditions of origin, migration patterns, students settlement patterns, biography, spiritual and religious trends, medical techniques, food processing, textile, building, botanical or other methodologies, general lifestyle or otherwise. Particular attention must be placed on time- specific references such as natural disasters, eclipses or contemporaneous events. Ambivalent concepts must be identified and so, too, distortions, if any, in the translation process. Gender, racial or private biases must be recognized, and so, too, the extent to which such biases are associated with the community, the presenter or the translator of the oral document. The nature of transmission of the document is significant because court historians tend to interpret differently from unofficial griots or institutions such as specialized training schools.
For the other its basis is social. Oral Tradition and aik the most significant information gathering exercise for aik is Oral Tradition, namely, the collective testimonies and recollections of the past, inherited from earlier generations, and transmitted in various forms of verbal testimonies. Orally transmitted information inherited from past generations may be shared in both structured and unstructured contexts. It constitutes a major resource and has been classified by many different scholars. Vansina's thoughtful classification is still handy. His five categories of Oral Tradition include formulae embedded in slogans, ceremonial or spiritually derived language, poetry, leadership lists of reigning monarchs, narratives or tales and commentaries. Narratives may be historical, instructive, artistic or personal and commentaries legal or non-legal. Needless to say, that 27 types of Yoruba poetry have been identified by one researcher, including poetry for wedding ceremonies, for relaxation and entertainment, for funerals of well known personalities, and poetry for the 'orisa' of wisdom, lined ifa.
There is a greater range of methodological experimentation and more willingness to utilize student centered resources. This model also aims at developing the mind and the intellect, in shredder the context of rigorous intellectual activity, and community-oriented research. Its implications for indigenous knowledge are manifested in affective, cognitive and methodological approaches, including a more experimental use of instructional resources. There is a keen awareness that knowledge production is socially derived, and that relations of domination and oppression could affect content. Evaluation in the context of this approach is not associated with objective tests, and the like, but rather, with measuring attitudes and social consciousness, and, as pointed out by susan toohey, this is sometimes negotiable through dialogue. For the first approach, aik may be structured along the lines of conventional disciplines. In the second, a more decidedly problem -oriented approach is undertaken. The concept of praxis is a prominent item on the agenda, and so, too, are community - based projects. For the first model, the structure of knowledge is logical.
In this case, both teacher and student may be hostages to text. At its best, however, the student emerges informed, although not necessarily critically aware of societal improprieties, and prevailing power relations. In the case of the more critically engaged model, however, the focus is socially oriented. Students are encouraged and trained to challenge existing relations of power and domination in terms of a transformative epistemology. Awareness of societal ills at local and global levels preoccupies discourse, and, the curriculum is viewed as an instrument of empowerment. Consciousness raising, and so, too, the development of social awareness, become part of the mission of the curriculum and curriculum planning. With this model, the use of the library media center is extensive. Learning and teaching strategies are decisively student centered.
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The curriculum and aik whether one views the curriculum as an academic plan, a map, or a sequence of steps, the reality is that theoretically speaking there are various models to choose from. We shall discuss two of these and reflect on the implications for teaching and learning strategies, content, evaluation and anticipated outcomes, with respect to Africa's. The two selected models, models 'a' and 'b' do not constitute all possible approaches to the curriculum, but they seem to be amongst the most dominant. The first model implies that knowledge consists of an independent body of facts that can be assimilated and transmitted through essay a good teacher, and, by means of thorough coverage of specific textbooks. Students are effectively assessed by occasional exams, that may be objective tests, or essays. This particular model is generally teacher- centered, and the instructor is a major actor in the learning process.
The content is generally logically arranged in a sequence of units. Educational content may be identified with specific disciplines in this teacher- centered, and subject- based model. It is quite feasible, though, to have variations of the model, which utilize student, centered learning strategies, within the context of core areas of study. Use of the library media center may be relatively restricted, in this approach, given the emphasis on one or two textbooks, identified by the teacher as exemplary. To teach aik in this classroom environment entails the discovery of one or two outstanding texts which would have incorporated identified core areas. At its worst, the textbooks, if eurocentric, place the entire enterprise at risk - through insinuation, ridicule and negative representations aimed at perpetuating eurocentric superiority and triumphalism.
Built into those models were negative and unwholesome presuppositions about race, gender and segregationist policies, and discriminatory modes of allocation of space, resources and infrastructure prevailed. Export- oriented growth, monoculture, and outward-bound programs for the export of first stage mineral and agricultural extraction, were the dominant trends in most parts of the continent. The survival of the informal sector took place against the odds. Its survival is a testimony to the strong capacity for resilience and growth, of aik, which invariably persists, not only at the level of material culture and the natural environment, but, also, in fields such as business management, banking, and hospitality or service. Jeffrey fadiman points out in 'south Africa's Black market' (Fadiman,2000) that African business methods include a people- centered approach, which places people above the product. In a reversal of western business strategy, personal relationships precede product presentation.
He identifies indigenous management strategies that are the result of indigenous commercial value systems, and ethics 'refined' over several millennia. Fadiman's text is geared for the business traveler from the west, but it is an excellent springboard for in-depth research into ik, at the level of management and business administration. The entrenchment within the curriculum and the educational milieu of structures for the critical evaluation, understanding, and revitalization of aik, must necessarily be an important challenge for 21st century policy makers and educators. The end result could be the consolidation of self-sustaining networks of local researchers, democratically engaged in research, and compatible with community values, aspirations and goals. It could also establish a pathway towards the consolidation of democratic forms of knowledge production, if done within the framework of openness, and empathetic critical research. Research that matters in this context would also include discussions about intellectual property rights and the nature of compensation for indigenous knowledge workers and experts. At the moment, institutional science is taught in the context of a eurocentric paradigm that carries along with it, disdain, disrespect and arrogance. It is hoped that respect, humility and openness would be some of the values permeating the new curriculum.
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Tapping into the intellectual resources associated with ik is not only cost effective but also relevant and indispensable, for environmentally and ecologically sensitive activity. It is at the level of economic sustainability, self-reliance, and cost effectiveness, however, that aik continues to prove its viability and strength. The most vibrant sectors of African economies, at this present time, are the informal sectors, sometimes referred to as the second economy. In some cases over 50 of total economic growth takes place in this arena of small-scale producers, manufacturers and bankers. Specialists and technical operatives include metallurgists, textile manufacturers and food processors. The interesting issue here is that many of the agents and agencies associated with the second economy, tap into the accumulated skills and expertise, and indigenous knowledge systems, from traditional Africa. The fact is that Africa in the 20th century was afflicted by 2 major externally derived economic models of exploitation, namely, the colonial model of exploitation and neo-colonial models aimed at recolonization. The economic and epistemological or knowledge oriented revelation aspects of those models were aimed at exploitation and mal-development.
There are numerous other theoretical and methodological puzzles, most of which would best be resolved in structured discussions within an institutional framework, in the context of a planned curriculum and formalized discourse. European philosophers of science from Popper to lakatos, and Kuhn to feyerabend have spent an inordinate amount of time discussing the nature of rationality, objectivity and problem solving in mainstream science. We need to do the same for aik, rejecting, accepting, modifying or adapting relevant conceptual baggage in the field, and creating entirely new constructs of analysis for understanding the phenomenon, where necessary. The need for the inclusion of aik in the curriculum goes beyond the above issue, however, no matter how significant the latter objective may. There are psychological, intellectual, and economic reasons, which basically stem from the mode of evolution of the historical process in the continent, as well as the structures of intellectual dominance and dependence associated with colonial and postcolonial hierarchies and power elites. We have elsewhere identified several strategies of disinformation embedded in eurocentric, colonial and post-colonial education, including the selective omission of non- european achievements, inventions and technologies; the distortion of data; surreptitious naming; and several other strategies of colonization and recolonization. The recognition and appreciation of iks is a source of healing of therapeutic import, in the context of unhealthy imbalances, distortion, trivialization and neglect, as inflicted synthesis by eurocentric education and governance.
and over dependence on demographic stability and morality. The community is a source of strength for ik in terms of the discovery process and knowledge production. For methodological pluralists such as paul feyerabend, by implication, ik is science because it functions. For some 'unified theorists' who believe in the concept of a single science, ik may probably be construed as scientific in the light of some of the common features associated with the enterprise. One perspective suggests that ik should be integrated into the mainstream whilst another implies that ik is science - separate from the mainstream, but equal. African Indigenous Knowledge systems (aik goals and Outcomes. Resolving theoretical and conceptual issues about the identity of African. Indigenous Knowledge systems (AIK) is in fact one of the many challenges confronting African philosophers, historians, anthropologists and educators.
Terri Whitney, professor of English, north Shore community college, and Project Director. There are intersections between mainstream science and. At the core of mainstream science is the desire to negotiate nature, through sequential processes such as hypothesis formulation, experiment and prediction. The process of discovery may daddy be intuitive, accidental, conjectural or inspirational but outcomes are generally predictable and repeatable, although some scholars argue that the general thrust of mainstream science, is to explain regularity, and to deliberately exclude the unique and intractable. Knowledge production, in mainstream science, includes phases of experimentation through trial and error or otherwise. But there are some areas of non-convergence as well between ik and discovery and experimentation and the mode of transmission and sharing is often collective rather than individualistic. Embedded in the products and services associated with ik are proprietary systems which are often more flexible and negotiable than its western counterpart in some cases and non-existent in others. The engine of growth and sustenance is neither the market nor the profit mainstream science. Ik seems to be relatively less transferable than conventional science, given its holistic socio-cultural and even spiritual dimensions.
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This Website was funded in may of 2000 by a three-year grant from the. National, endowment for the writing humanities and is a collaborative effort. North Shore community college in Danvers, massachusetts, and three salem, massachusetts museums with important Hawthorne collections: The, peabody Essex Museum, the, house of the seven Gables Historic Site, and the, salem Maritime national Historic Site. Also, the sections on The custom house chapter. The Scarlet Letter, the architecture of the salem Custom house, and some parts of the life and Times section were funded in 1999 by a one-year grant from the. Community college humanities Association. Dedication, enter site, this site is dedicated to two people who helped me draft the project proposal and without whose guidance and support I probably would never have had the energy to re-submit the proposal when it was not funded by neh the first year. Salem State college who offered invaluable suggestions for the project proposal and whose work on Hawthorne is featured on this site thanks to his wife, marilyn Salleck, and my late husband, Professor Dan Popp from North Shore community college, who died during the first year.