Traditional Stories in Sierra Leone: What Role for Librarians?


INTRODUCTION Stories are as vintage as language, as vintage because the earliest societies. A few of the earliest memories even continue to exist: the ones informed in pictorial shape on partitions of give way Lascaux, in France or withinside the Mpongweni Mountains in Lesotho. And others have come right all the way down to us withinside the international‘s myths and folklore to which we’ve get entry to at the revealed age.

Storytelling is older than printing, older than writing, and the primary memories to be set down on paper, papyrus or parchment have been now no longer the paintings of these authors however statistics of the oral traditions of beyond centuries. In Sierra Leone as it’s miles in maximum African nations storytelling is an essential a part of the usa‘s lifestyles despite the fact that oral traditions have very in large part yielded to the written phrase. We analyze as we stay whilst we’re youngsters, younger humans and adults. Learning isn’t always restrained to the study room alone: Hindi Kahani like stories in hindi is most popular trend on Youtube.

it could take region anywhere. Moral values and social norms, ideals and codes ought to be transmitted from technology to the subsequent, whether or not changed or now no longer. Informal getting to know settings are applicable and is probably dominant even nowadays while greater formalized and precise establishments have in part taken over. While Sierra Leoneans defend themselves in opposition to their beyond each educationist and librarians see loads in storytelling that might be used as basis to orient and broaden the younger withinside the college system.

There are many warning signs that a tremendous richness of conventional pedagogy in admire to the principles, contents, strategies and institutional preparations existed and nevertheless exist in Sierra Leone. Story tellers, their memories and songs, proverbs and riddles are nevertheless vital belongings and topics for indigenous getting to know and training. Oral traditions do now no longer handiest byskip the mores and requirements of a society. They got down to give an explanation for the sector and behavior of the humans in it.

Oral traditions provide money owed of ways the sector commenced and those advent myths are element additionally of the Holy Books of all of the international‘s lengthyhooked up religions along with Christianity and Islam. Also defined in allegorical phrases is all human behaviour wherein correct does now no longer constantly conquer evil. Stories which do now no longer depend upon literature in flip do now no longer depend upon literacy.

They can attain all the network and their interactive great is itself energy, for it allows the capabilities of memories in social training, what Leeson (1985) called “passing at the usa‘s shared knowledge and values to the subsequent technology.” Sadly there may be a lacking hyperlink in Sierra Leone as college going youngsters are nicely familiar with the memories of Great Britain, america of America, Canada and Italy to quote some examples however recognise little or no approximately their conventional memories.

STORYTELLING IN SIERRA LEONE Sierra Leone incorporates sixteen (16) ethnic businesses. The biggest of those is the Mende observed withinside the Southern and Eastern Provinces. Next to them in variety is the Temne withinside the North. The 0.33 biggest institution is the Limba, additionally withinside the Northern Province, observed with the aid of using the Kono withinside the Eastern Province.

There’s additionally the Koranko withinside the North in addition to the Yalunka, Loko, Soso, Madingo and Fula. On the coast, North and South are the Bullom and Sherbro observed with the aid of using the a great deal smaller businesses of Krim, Vai and Gola, with the Kissi in addition inland withinside the Eastern Province. The Western Area, consisting of Freetown, is greater jumbled together population, however is essentially the house of the Creole institution. In most of these ethnic businesses, storytelling is not unusualplace as a part of their subculture. Ogutu and Roscoe (1974) had this to mention approximately storytelling in Africa: “The continent has its very own fiction traditions; it has the way of life of storytelling, narrated orally… the medium via which Africa down the centuries has bared its soul, taught its humans and entertained itself” (pp. 43-44).

Traditional memories in Sierra Leone are perceived as embodiment of the ideals, customs, rituals and systems of society that want to be maintained. Stories perform inside society to insure conformity to the everyday cultural norms of continuity from technology to technology via their position in training and the quantity to which they reflect subculture. Most conventional storytellers declare to derive their artwork via dreams, spirits, and apprenticeship to expert storytellers; others declare to accumulate the artwork at once from God whilst a few say they paid to accumulate it. Storytellers own the subsequent features: • Fluency withinside the neighborhood language and mastery of a extensive variety of vocabulary for all tiers of audiences;

• Creativity and cappotential to set up rapport with their audiences;

• Knowledge in their audiences and their wishes;

• Familiarity with and cap potential to consult their subculture and surroundings to liven up their memories and lead them to attraction to their target target market;

• Good reminiscence of correct retention and narration of a big corpus of material; and

• Candour. The contents of conventional memories may be grouped into:

• Myths-memories tinted with religion, superstition and conventional ideals specially approximately the origins of mankind and phenomena;

• Legends-memories approximately ancient occasions and remarkable humans along with struggle are heroes, splendid medicinal drug guys and migration;

• Fiction-imaginary testimonies labeled into allegory, fables, delusion and parables. These may be in addition categorized with the aid of using social characteristic or group namely:

• Political memoriesmemories approximately management and the connection among leaders and their topics;

• Tribe memoriesthose display the systems, households and groups i.e. marriage and genealogies;

• Religion and deities-memories approximately advent and phenomena along with demise and rain;

• Moral virtues-memories supposed to deride such vices as pride, greed, thievery, murder, dishonesty, foolishness and shortage of insight;

• Economics-memories that address paintings, borrowing and lending, industriousness and laziness.

Characters in common conventional Sierra Leonean memories variety from humans to animals, stones, trees, plants, deities, spirits and birds. These characters are symbolic: Bra rabbit- trickery; tortoise-knowledge; elephant-nobility; vulture-patience; lion-bravery and strength; sparrow, parrot and crow-intelligence; dove-correct fortune; spider-cunning. Stories are informed in simple terms for night entertainments. Sometimes storytelling classes may be any time of the day with audiences in non-public verandahs, ‘courtroom docket barries’ or different public locations. However, the conventional placing in which twenty to 40 humans take a seat down collectively round a kerosene lamp or hearthplace at night time after a day’s paintings is accomplished and meals has been cooked and eaten. Storytellers also are invited to cultural social capabilities along with weddings, burials, mystery society celebrations and crowning ceremonies.

Tobacco is frequently furnished for with out smoking storytelling thoughts will now no longer flow. Stories go along with songs; a track begins offevolved off a tale; an vital line in a tale makes up a brand new tale; a proverb ends a tale; a track withinside the center of a tale is used to awaken listeners or to put together for the approaching climax. Very frequently songs do invite participation, and listeners emerge as lively supporters of a chorus, clapping their hands, accomplishing to lies and jokes of the tale teller, who in flip solutions the feedback frequently with every other tale. Songs are subsidized with the aid of using the thrashing of conventional musical contraptions like ‘kaylain’, ‘sira’ ‘seigureh’ and ‘sangba’ (neighborhood drum) to feature rhythm.

Story telling target target market is commonly lively. It catalyses the narratives with the aid of using spontaneous exclamations, inquiries to the narrator, echoing of the narrator’s voice, and becoming a member of withinside the making a song of choruses. For most of these to take region area is maintained. The target target market is made to chortle and exclaim however with out jeopardizing the continuation of the narration.

SOCIAL FUNCTIONS OF TRADITIONAL STORIES Foremost is socialization. The telling and listening of memories is a social hobby that brings humans collectively to percentage in inventive and innovative affair.

The event is supposed to entertain in order that humans ought to overlook the drudgery of day by day lifestyles. People are transplanted to a international of make-belief. As the narration is going via the nuances of recreating the fictitious international the target target market is carried alongside like passengers on a flight. The entertainment derived is facilitated with the aid of using the social company of the target target market. The surroundings is usually casual with out a coercion or harassment; absolutely each person is on same footing irrespective of gender and age. Participants have a risk to relate and listen. The scenario underscores the price of social cooperation.

The area inherent withinside the narration is unavoidably converted to spheres of lifestyles. Participants discover ways to admire others, admire non-public variations in capabilities and temperament and have the ability to narrate in a not unusualplace hobby. Mental stimulation is derived from storytelling. Stories are informed and acquired via the ear. The call for they region at the narrator is to recollect the tale and inform it for a probable retelling in destiny. This is ideal education for the reminiscence. One must be responsive to get the necessities of a tale and assimilate it into repertoire.

Thus the thoughts ought to be very lively to deal with the brand new know-how or sorts of what’s already acknowledged. As nicely as education of reminiscence the narratives sharpen important appreciation. One has to inquest the message of the narrative and evaluates the occasions related. Stories aren’t simply informed for his or her very own sake however have vital portions of social training to impart. The allegories of occasions and characters mirror on human lifestyles and are a supply of getting to know. In the characters of memories the target target market will see laziness, sages, cowards, agitators and the conceited to quote however some examples. Stories provide suggestions as to a way to react to them.

The narratives provide hints on what’s cherishable. In different phrases they are seeking to alternate lifestyles. Stories are cultural statistics. The subculture of a humans is the totality in their approaches of lifestyles which encompass religion, ideals, customs, practices, music, literature, attitudes, and philosophy. By being didactic memories gift to humans the philosophical essence of the society. The contents of oral traditions epitomize the rules of that institution.

The testimonies of religion, advent and supernatural provide the spiritual foundations of that institution. Biographies and ancient testimonies gift the mundane landmarks in what’s the society nowadays. Through the conventional heroes, humans admire what the society admires. INCLUSION OF TRADITIONAL STORIES IN THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM Stories are wealthy in way of life and a treasured historical past which might be the usa‘s supply of oral literature. Storytelling is like records:

it exhibits the beyond, educates the existing and throws lighting fixtures at the destiny. Stories contact the soul of society and jolt them into an focus in their condition. In Sierra Leone but those treasures of oral way of life are in hazard of being disdained, forgotten and buried. By selling the gathering and book of those oral reassets of data college librarians will now no longer handiest make contributions to a profitable revival of hobby in a hitherto omitted subject however will make sure that posterity will derive most advantages from such an endeavour. Sierra Leone is, in political parlance, a fantastically new kingdom following a decade-lengthy civil strugglefare (1991-2001). Recording memories and consisting of those withinside the college curriculum ought to discover answers to the usa‘s troubles of non-integration. Just because the usa‘s National Dance Troupe through the years advanced right into a own circle of relatives countrywide ensemble so will recording conventional memories gift a much less heterogeneous foundation and anticipate a virtually countrywide and homogenous character.

Traditional memories educate ethical classes not unusualplace to all of the ethnic businesses in Sierra Leone. Sir Winston Wilson as soon as found that the in addition lower back we investigate the beyond, the greater into the destiny we will see. Recording conventional memories ought to assist Sierra Leoneans to appearance lower back to their beyond with the intention to seeing into their destiny. Besides, colleges along public libraries are the maximum famous locations to inform memories to youngsters. The sort of target target market determines the type of tale to be informed. For example youngsters from a long time 3 to 5 experience memories approximately animals and approximately youngsters themselves. While college-age youngsters move in for lengthy memories.

Junior High School students like myths and epics. They are interested in heroes and experience journey and romance. The proper to study one’s very own international is an crucial a part of the proper to analyze. Stories and songs are the media via which Sierra Leoneans had been to byskip to their youngsters the traditions, customs, subculture and oral records in their society. Indigenous literature but is vital to save you the literate individual from turning into alienated from his very own subculture and way of life. It strengthens the appreciation of one’s very own cultural values and cultural identification in a unexpectedly converting surroundings. In Sierra Leone in which for a long term training has been primarily based totally on books that relate to different cultures that is very vital. Like anywhere else withinside the international the notice of humans‘s cultural historical past is likewise a prerequisite for the continuity, concord and development in their society.

Over and above all of the wealthy oral traditions of Sierra Leoneans with their one-of-a-kind languages can without problems wander away with the propagation of contemporary-day way of conversation, if now no longer preserved. ROLE OF LIBRARIES Libraries are the gatekeepers to the sector of data and know-how. Kinnell (1992) opined that Good libraries empower. Using their sources can unfetter our imagination, reveal hitherto unrealized worlds; sell know-how; set off pleasure; make us chortle; insights; task our misconceptions; assuage fears; prick our judgment of right and wrong; impact our sensibilities; and offer expert refreshment. “What we analyze from correct books and different sources emerge as a part of us”(p.5). Libraries are the impartial grounds on which the man or woman baby may also develop via unbiased and unhindered discovery. They are locations to analyze and exercise data capabilities. Libraries offer reassets of data for younger humans, allowing them to find out and use the energy of get entry to that data capabilities can convey withinside the society of nowadays and that of tomorrow.

Amonoo and Azubuike (2003) opined that libraries are catalysts for human development as they useful resource the improvement and transmission of know-how and subculture, and foster civic focus in aid of democracy. Libraries keep and sell cultural historical past and diversity, and foster mutual expertise and admire for cultures and peoples.

For Johnson (2013) “correct college and university libraries can beautify the instructional enjoy, inspire analyzing and fostering the important wondering that scholars would require to continue to exist and prosper in an more and more more complicated society”(p.295). An benefit that libraries experience is that they’re centrally located inside groups. As such they’re nicely located to meet a position as cultural facilities. They are herbal locations for the promoting of literature consisting of poetry, drama, prose and storytelling.

They additionally provide venue for visible arts and music. In addition they’re cultural facilities withinside the proper feel of the phrase, highlighting neighborhood subculture and capable of spotlight the subculture of youngsters representing the numerous businesses in the network. Le Roux (2005) averred that the college library is not anything much less than the judgment of right and wrong of the curriculum. Schools libraries offer applicable and up to date substances and offerings for coaching workforce and students to aid the curriculum.

Implicitly the gathering so advanced need to be one which displays now no longer handiest the acknowledged wishes of customers however additionally predicted wishes of potential instructors and students. By providing their customers with a consultant series of kid’s literature libraries ought to stimulate instructors and students alike to broaden resourceful use of storytelling substances that might be surpassed directly to students in next years. Provision and promoting of offerings presupposes a know-how and expertise of the sector inside which youngsters stay on a global, countrywide and basis. Children can derive from libraries entertainment of tale enjoy, of language, and of related artwork. The sources of the library may also foster know-how of a much broader international and an expertise of different humans with reference to behavior, subculture, or conditions (Johnson,2013).

Children can advantage self-know-how via regarding conditions, occasions and characters. Libraries can offer for kid’s data wishes. Good offerings may also assist to engender self assurance in the purchase of vocabulary, speech and language. Libraries offer possibilities for shared enjoy among adults and youngsters. Central to the philosophy of library provision for younger humans is to aid formal and casual training. School libraries are conversation facilities. They represent an excellent way of disseminating / know-how. Their reason is to facilitate get entry to to the purchasers they serve to the gear of know-how to help their cultural and expert improvement (Wehmeyer, 2005).

Ultimately this characteristic is related to the highbrow improvement of students and their attitudes in the direction of conditions of all kinds, ethical, highbrow, social, sensible and recreational. ESSENTIAL TASKS FOR LIBRARIANS Traditional memories are elements of peoples’ indigenous know-how structures and thinking about their social capabilities in society there may be each want for those to be preserved. The truth withinside the foremost is that a great deal of the artwork of storytelling is owned with the aid of using adults maximum of whom are developing vintage and dying. And in Africa as an example while an vintage individual dies it’s miles believed that a library is burnt. This is in which college librarians need to are available in to play a vital position.

Traditional storytelling is an inexplicable phenomenon of Sierra Leonean lifestyles and is vital for destiny improvement. Already steps had been undertaken with the aid of using a few agencies like Partners in Adult Education (PEA), the Department of History and African Studies and the Division of Extra-Mural Studies (DEMS) at Fourah Bay College to document a few conventional memories, songs, proverbs and riddles for destiny use. School librarians need to be a part of those efforts with the aid of using recording conventional memories the use of traditional data and conversation technology along with telecommunications (cell phones), computers, microfiche, and audiovisual technology( e.g. cassette recorders, slides, video tapes, tape recorders and CD-ROMs) to document, repackage and disseminate memories for his or her supposed audiences. Given the significance of internet era in data collecting and dissemination librarians also can document memories in internet OPACs in order that instructors, students, and researchers can study one-of-a-kind memories in addition to biographies of famend tale tellers withinside the usa (Kochtanek and Mathews, 2002).

Further college librarians need to be transcribing and publishing memories into booklets and anthologies to be used in colleges. Such efforts will make contributions to the modest inventory of written substances withinside the usa to be had for colleges, youths or even adults. Translating conventional memories into numerous languages will make contributions to intercultural expertise withinside the usa. Through those efforts the usa‘s cultures might emerge as the content material of getting to know or even the shape with the aid of using taking it from its roots. As conventional memories and songs are dwelling in positive contexts rudiments of those may be provided in photographs: village lifestyles, arts and crafts, landscapes, peoples and journey routes. Central in most of these efforts might be photographs of tale tellers and their audiences, dancers and artists.

The visible impressions created with the aid of using pics will in addition improve kid’s expertise and hobby in college. Story telling classes need to now no longer handiest be filmed / videoed however librarians need to collect biographies of storytellers to be used in colleges. Such strides will enhance kid’s know-how of the numerous ethnic businesses withinside the usa and will move a protracted manner in decreasing illiteracy. In college librarians need to recommend for expanded slots for storytelling at the time table.

They need to additionally foyer for the advent of conventional storytelling as much as Junior Secondary School stage as elements of Literature. Children need to be introduced to the library for unique storytelling classes so they couldn’t overlook their subculture. Parents and Storytellers need to be invited to relate memories in college for the advantage of youngsters. Such efforts want collaboration with difficulty instructors who higher recognize the wishes of students and the curriculum.

School librarians need to additionally keep hyperlinks with public libraries and close by colleges of their areas. Children need to be taken on go to to public libraries inside their localities in which storytelling classes may be held. In most of these actions college librarians need to own full-size know-how of storytelling suitable for the various wishes and tiers of students of their respective colleges. Links need to additionally be made with tertiary establishments and agencies engaged in grownup literacy which might be already concerned in conventional storytelling sports as a part of their curricula. Lecturers and animators may be invited to highschool to speak to youngsters approximately the significance of conventional storytelling or even inform memories for the advantage of students and instructors. There are network radios stations everywhere in the usa and colleges should buy air time to maintain discussions on storytelling.

If feasible storytellers need to be invited to such talks to be both interviewed or inform memories. In truth the countrywide broadcaster, the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Cooperation (SLBC) ought to play a main position on this path with the aid of using growing at the least a fit in its weekly applications for storytelling. The college librarians, to be effective, want to be capable of “sell” the artwork of storytelling withinside the equal manner different competition for youngsters “sell” their wares. They need to prepare Book Weeks with storytelling classes covered withinside the sports to be finished in such Weeks. During such classes storytellers and determine may be invited to inform memories to youngsters. Teachers, mother and father and older students need to be recommended to jot down and study memories to the more youthful ones.

They need to additionally display videos or slides/musical variations of famend conventional memories. CONCLUSION A nicely used college library promotes getting to know, increases success and complements studentsnon-public and social improvement. It is an asset to the college, each in phrases of bodily sources and the broader sources all through the college it’s going to harness for the advantage of its customers (The Library Association (1998). Invariably, conventional memories have surpassed from the historical to modern generations with the aid of using phrase of mouth. They have survived the take a look at of time due to the universality in their messages throughout time and boundaries.

Thus Sierra Leoneans nevertheless discover conventional memories applicable and adoptable to their reviews nowadays. As time passes on conventional memories nevertheless ought to be surpassed right all the way down to their descendants. Noticeably this need to now no longer be completely via the oral phrase. Literacy and different elements of contemporary-day lifestyles are available in to useful resource the upkeep and in addition transmission of conventional memories. And that is in which college librarians need to are available in. Through compilation of anthologies, recording memories into audio tapes, CD ROMs, and cinema movies and advent of networks to quote however some examples, college librarians might be capable of create a greater everlasting document of this treasured asset for destiny use.

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