If we are to promote our rich cultural heritage, then the most logical thing to do is to preserve both the tangible and intangible cultural heritage in writing...consequently literature. Literature survives the test of time and is always apprehended. The main stakeholder in the preservation of culture is the community.
The tangible cultural heritage includes places and monuments, while intangible cultural heritage comprises of our history, rituals, songs, language, poetry, craftsmanship, and other social ceremonies.
Although we are more of an oral society, promotion of literature should be emphasized in this generation. The people who tell us stories about our forefathers or ancient times are passing on due to old age. But one has to ask, who is going to narrate to the coming generations the beauty of the Rwandan culture?
I’m not quite sure if it’s compulsory in schools for a child to read a whole book then try to review it for a whole term. I think this should be part of the schools curriculum in Rwanda most especially if we are to promote the reading culture and preserve literature.
Charlie “Tremendous” Jones stated that “You’re the same today as you’ll be in five years except for the people you meet and the books you read.”
The above statement reflects the essence of reading and the power it has on one’s life. It was disheartening when I looked through the African writer’s list and I discovered Rwanda has a few established and recognized writers
Books are the windows of the past therefore if we are to pass on the norms, traditions and values of the Rwandan cultural heritage, let us put it in writing. Word has it that a writer lives for several generations; a great example is William Shakespeare, an English poet and playwright, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world’s pre-eminent dramatist. He was born April 23, 1564 and died April 23, 1616, but we still reminisce about his work up till this day.
Even with the upcoming technological advancement, literature survives although it just changes form.