Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Culture of Zimbabwe
Culture of Zimbabwe - Zimbabwe has many different cultures which may include beliefs and ceremonies, one of them being Shona. The Shona people have many sculptures and carvings of gods (idols) which are made with the finest materials available.
Traditional arts in Zimbabwe include pottery, basketry, textiles, jewelry, and carving. Among the distinctive qualities are symmetrically patterned woven baskets and stools carved out of a single piece of wood. Shona sculpture in essence has been a fusion of African folkore with European influences. Also, a recurring theme in Zimbabwean art is the metamorphosis of man into beast.
Though the country's art is admired that those that know of its existence, few Zimbabwean artists have managed to gain a world audience, to name two, world-famous Zimbabwean sculptors Nesbert Mukomberanwa and Locardia Ndandarika.
Fourty to fifty percent of Zimbabweans attend Christian churches. However like most former European colonies, Christianity is often mixed with traditional beliefs. Besides Christianity, the Mwari cult is the most practiced non-Christian religion which involves ancestor worship and spiritual intercession. Mwari is an unknown supreme being that communicates with humans though a cave dwelling oracle known as the Voice of Mwari.
English is the official language of Zimbabwe though about two percent consider it their native language, mainly the white and Coloured (mixed race) minorities. The rest of the population speak Bantu languages like Shona (76%) and Sindebele (18%). English is spoken primarily in the urban areas and little in the rural.
Like in many African countries, a majority of Zimbabweans depend on staple foods, the most popular, sadza, is a white maize porridge also known in South Africa as mielies. The flour used to make sadza can be made into several other flour foods which are eaten all across Africa, the most common being ugali as it is known in Kenya. Sadza would be likely to be served at breakfast and ugali at supper. Meat is also eaten but not as often. Usually, during a holiday like Christmas, for example, a goat may be slaughtered and roasted; this is called nyama choma. White Zimbabweans, like white South Africans, enjoy having a barbecue or braai, which will often include mielies.
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