World Music Center Distinguished Scholar Series
Transformative Pedagogy in South African
Tertiary Education Contexts
Lecture by Dr. Patricia A. Opondo
Senior Lecturer in African Music and Dance
University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Decolonizing education to foster a more inclusive and culturally relevant learning environment in African contexts. The presentation explores the integration of indigenous epistemologies and pedagogies into the transmission process, aiming to enhance the authenticity and effectiveness of the educational experience. To acknowledge and value diverse ways of knowing and learning, as well as the significance of creating inclusive learning environments that reflect students' cultural identities in South African contexts, where indigenous cultures contribute to the vibrant tapestry of music and dance. By addressing the unique context of South Africa, the presentation provides insights that can inform pedagogical practices in other multicultural and post-colonial educational settings. This work contributes to the growing discourse on transformative pedagogy by specifically addressing the case of African Music and Dance education in South Africa; it provides insights and recommendations for educators, policymakers, and curriculum developers seeking to enhance tertiary education's relevance and cultural sensitivity.
Dr. Patricia A. Opondo is a Senior Lecturer in African Music and Dance at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. She is also the Director of the African Music Project and Curator of the African Cultural Calabash festival. Artistic Director of Ikusasa Lethu – African Music and Dance performing ensemble. She has served on the International Council on Traditional Music Executive Board and as Chair of the ICTM Study Group on African Musics (SGAM). She was instrumental in the University of KwaZulu-Natal hosting the 40th ICTM World Conference and the 1st ICTM SGAM symposium. She was appointed to the South African Ministerial Committee for the National Indigenous Music Project to formulate a national strategy and plan for the collection, preservation, and promotion of indigenous music of South Africa with the ultimate objective to re-engineer the National Sound Film and Video Archives. She has served on the editorial board of the African Music Journal and MUZIKI: Journal of Music Research in Africa.