Profiling a Cross-Cultural Mixed Gender Traditional Playhouse Game in Zimbabwe

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Gundani, M.P.D, Chivuna, O, Dube, A

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Published: 24 February 2021 | Article Type :


This paper is aimed at documentation of a common cross-cultural playhouse traditional game for children in  Zimbabwe. The main objectives of the research were to: identify the similarities in the playhouse traditional  game across-cultures; discuss possible causes of these similarities in the game; establish the origins and  originators of the game; highlight the social functions, purposes and values of the game and make  recommendations on how the game can be preserved for posterity. A qualitative, descriptive, participatory  research method through demonstrations, open and structured interviews and documentary analysis were  used for data collection. Although there are several possible causes of the similarities in the game it is  impossible to only attribute particular causes to the similarities, but just to say the cause of similarities  could be attributed to all or some of the causes of similarities identified. The presentation is based on a  common playhouse traditional game of four selected ethnic cultures in Zimbabwe, namely Kalanga,  Ndebele, Shona and Tonga. The selection of the game in the four ethnic cultures of Zimbabwe is purposive,  because not much comparative documentation has been done on the traditional games of Africa and  Zimbabwe in particular, on the basis of ethnic commonality and popularity. The foursome approach to  documentation of this traditional game has been considered as a unique, diverse nomenclature approach in  documenting common and similar games in the history of traditional games documentation and profiling in  Zimbabwe. Whilst names and naming in African cultures is indicative of their spiritual historic, social,  economic, political, and evolutionary experiences, most traditional games in Africa and World over have  similar and general functions and purposes. The presentation is formatted as a profile of the same game in  the four selected cultures concentrating mainly on the number of participants, description, instructions or  rules of the game, purposes, functions and values of the game. A brief historical back ground of the origins  and geographical locations of the ethnic groups will help in establishing the linkages between the cultures  opening up a window for viewing the game’s similarities and differences.

Keywords: Profiling, Cross-cultural, Mixed gender, Traditional playhouse game, Intangible Cultural  Heritage, Zimbabwe.

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Gundani, M.P.D, Chivuna, O, Dube, A. (2021-02-24). "Profiling a Cross-Cultural Mixed Gender Traditional Playhouse Game in Zimbabwe." *Volume 3*, 1, 19-29