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1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Culture entails the way of life of people culture is the total way of life of a people, culture can also be defined as the identity through which a particular set of people are identified. Every society, no matter how civilized or uncivilized has its totality and way of life. This pattern or way of life is carried on from one generation to another. It is technically and naturally impacted on to the young one’s through various channels of communication Of which one of the outstanding is the electronic media which is the radio and television. Which ever way the electronic media which is the radio intends to pass the messages, it is important to know that it is through the media which is the radio that the targeted audience can be reached.
Communication according to Nsude and nwosu et al (2006: 266) is the art through which pieces of information are related form one person to an other in the process of interaction.” Eziechine (1999:11) say’s that communication involves the exchange of information and ideas. In the words of jayaweera (1991:17) communication is “An interactive process through which persons or group of people relate to each other, share information, experiences, culture and lots more. Nwuneli (1985:187) see’s communication as “The sharing of experience, which may involve two or more people” From the above definitions it is clear that communication means basically to share information ideas, Opinions, feelings and experiences between people. For communication to get to its targeted audience it must be passed through a channel which is the radio.
The media is a compound of many things rolled into one however, the media is divided into two parts the broadcast and the print media. But one thing that remains common is the mention of the world “media” it brings about something related to news entertainment, information, cultural transmission. According to O’Shaughnessy (1999 .4) the mass media are technologically developed and economically profitable forms of human communication, held in public or private ownership which can transmit information, ideas, entertainment across time and space to a diverse group of people. Therefore, through the broadcast media which is the radio crucial roles are played in education members of the society educating and enlightening the people on the need to uphold their culture.
Lasswell (1948) said that the foremost functions of the media which is the radio in any society is to provide surveillance of the environment disclosing threats and opportunity affecting the valued parts position of the community and component part within it, a reasonable media such as the radio should therefore be used to position the citizen in a way they would see the importance of their culture, there by fighting towards promoting this culture of theirs. The Radio is believed to have the capacity which can cut through the barriers of illiteracy and is the overall development of the society. This perspective has been accepted by different authorities in miscommunication, from the long-standing traditional change this suggests that the radio is relevant in power distribution and watching over the extent at which the power is negatively or positively being impacted on the people. The mass media are significant part of the society mostly in this modern day where and when communication, information, technology has made the world a global village. To this effect a diverse and heterogenous group of people are dependent. Upon the regular contact with the radio for education, information, entertainment, opinions, ideas sensitization mobilization, integration among others, which are is one way or the other connected to our attempt to define who and what are. The Radio transmits ideas information to the targeted audience, this shows that they are responsible for most adjustments in the behavioral patterns of the people in the society. Sometimes these adjustments take the target audience unawares and they find themselves trapped in the manifestation of the acquired behavior for instance “African youths who are faced with the relegation of African values to the background” (Odetola and Ademola 1985). Whichever way it is considered, the radio has used in this research work tends to show how they affect the lives of the people in promoting culture. The generally learned and shared ways of doing things that are peculiar to our society come under the shield of culture and this culture is transmitted from one generation to another.
This research work intends to examine the role of the radio in propagating culture in Nigeria, It aims at finding out whether the radio as a channel of the mass media recognize their obligations to the society, especially in the area of culture. Due to the fact that the culture of the people is supposed to be their identity and it is gradually fading away all because we African’s ignore our culture and prefer that of the westerners This research intends to touch a certain rural area to know the extent at which the media (Radio) carry out their roles in promoting culture in Nigeria.
It focuses on Gbagir, a typical rural autonomous community in Bayelsa state precisely. It considers the type of food they eat the way they dance the music and their traditional attire et.c. Imperatively research has it that the mode of dressing amongst our youths boys and girls even the married women and men are nothing to write home about. Because of their quest to look good women and youths in Our society male or female dress half naked all in the name of fashion and trend. One would find a young man with braided hair like that of a lady. Some of these young men go as far as putting on ear-rings drawing tattoos on various parts of their body, wearing their trousers down known popularly as sagging. The traditional and local music of the people has been replaced with that of the westerners which is known as hip hop, rock and roll, which were introduced by the white men today our young boys and girls can no longer compete with their fellow boys and girls from the neighboring villages in traditional and cultural dances, All because of the domination of the western ways.
Language which is supposed to be the vehicle through which our culture is passed on from one generation to another has been overridden by the westerner’s way of life where children can no long longer speak their language parents in various families nowadays teach their children English language instead of their native language. While in schools pupils are forbidden to speak any language which is not English language. In tertiary institutions under graduate prefer to study foreign languages while those that are studying indigenous languages are looked down upon. All these and more are caused due to the negligence of our culture by us African’s (Nigerians). The question is put forward this way. Who contributes to the construction maintenance sustenance of culture? Culture is built maintained uplifted, and sustained through communication via the radio because cultural power and promotion resides in communication. It is based on these established facts that the role of the radio in propagating culture in Nigeria. A case study of Gbagir the south of Bayelsa state can be studied and analyzed Since the effective coverage of the Gbagir peoples culture will contribute to the growth and development of the area, there is no need to determine the roles played by the radio in doing this.
Gbagir is the area of study of this research work it is in the south-south region of Bayelsa state. History has it that before the Emergence of the white (westerners) into African traditional way of life Gbagir shares boundary with neighbours like foropa, Alaibiri, sagbama etc. The people of Gbagir are basically fisher men. Here a man’s. Social status is measured by the number of boats he has. The Gbagir’s engage in activities like fishing, farming, hunting, carving, weaving, they also engage themselves in government and public services. Gbagir is a polytheistic village with the roles of the gods clearly defined, this makes it easy to know which god to consult in times of need. The gods include Tamuno, Egbesu, Ayiba etc.
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