Society and Culture

The significant of time in Igbo culture

Due to the absence of records in writing in traditional Africa , individual African thinkers effort to reflect on the phenomena of time and space were not effectively preserved.

Consequently, one observes that the products of such philosophical reflections on time have become in the ages, part of the traditional African culture.
The individual authors remain unknown; yet, it goes without saying that these views must have been the fruits of deep and sustained philosophical reflections by some gifted individual African thinkers in the past though now unknown to us. This scenario has reduced traditional African articulation of time to “community thoughts”.

THE IGBO OF NIGERIA
The Igbo are an ethnic group located in the South-Eastern part of Nigeria in West Africa . Igbo land extends to parts of the Mid-Western and Niger Delta areas of Nigeria . It covers the present Abia, Anambra, Enugu , Imo, the Eastern part of Delta State , and the Northern part of Rivers State .
Linguistically, the Igbo belong to the Kwa group of West Africa . With an estimated population of about fourteen million, the Igbo formed the third largest ethnic group in Nigeria . They live mainly in rural agricultural villages. However, teachers, traders, and other professionals; though receptive to foreign cultures, they find it difficult to jettison their tradition.

THE IGBO CONCEPT OF TIME
Time is reckoned by the Igbo in non-abstract terms. The traditional Igbo does not talk of half past three in the afternoon; rather, he talks of when civil servants dismiss from work. One is said to have been born at the end of the Nigeria-Biafra war rather than on January 15, 1970 . That is to say, time is peopled with events related to the movements of the sun and the moon, or in relation to important events in the lives of individuals or groups of individuals.

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