Creativity is lacking in students of today – Sutherland-Addy
Ghana’s educational institutions should not be avenues for students to pass their examinations rather places where people must be creative through serious research to make them analysts and thinkers needed for nation building.
Mrs Esi Sutherland-Addy of the Institute of African Studies, who said this on Monday, indicated that “We (educational authorities) should be stringent to let people think about issues and problems themselves.
“…the potential of creativity to perform as an impetus for a modern nationhood cannot be taken for granted,” Mrs Sutherland-Addy said delivering a paper at the 9th Faculty of Arts Colloquium of the University of Ghana, Legon on the topic: Musing on Creativity as the Spark for Modern Nationhood.”
The two-day Colloquium is being organized under the theme: “Creating in Diversity: Exploring our Difference for Nationhood”.
Mrs Sutherland-Addy argued that the creative spirit of Ghana’s early writers and artists such as Ephraim Amu, Afua Sutherland, the Ayi Kwei Armah and the likes seemed to be lost and so far away on the youth of today.
“…thinking and acting creatively are librating forms of cultural identity and that as creativity can be invoked in all spheres of human activity it is essential spark for holistic and balanced nationhood,” she said.
According to her, the very emergence of Ghana was structured on nationhood, which people like Casely Hayford, Marcus Garvey and Kwame Nkrumah stood for during the nationalist struggle and the Pan African movement that reflected in their journalistic and creative writings at the time.
Mrs Suntherland-Addy said creativity emerges truly only in a receptive space where it was validated and cultivated and that the contribution that knowledge made should include creativity.
She said promoting cultural diversities helped to realize development gains and that Ghana needed to develop its culture into a set of marketable good.
Using the Adinkrahene symbol to illustrate Ghana’s cultural diversity and the transition from pre-colonial to post colonial, she said while all the three Adinkrahene circles were interrelated, each was a complete circle on itself. “We belonged to a bundle of life,” she said.
Drawing some lessons from Ubuntu, she said, the people of Ubuntu “speak their own language yet appreciated each other and do not compete” and added that in our everyday conversations, Ghanaians rarely speak their own language without interspersing it with words or phrases of some other languages.
The Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Professor Ernest Aryettey in a brief remark, also underscored the creativity of the arts in nation building and promised to expedite action on on-going infrastructural projects for the Faculty of Arts.