Throughout the history of the post-colonial era there has been an increasing call for utilizing and generating African solutions to meet the challenges and development in Africa, as opposed to blueprints of Western development solutions. A belief in African solutions implies a belief in ones own peoples’ knowledge and abilities, ultimately manifested in a strong identity.
In this thesis I use Basil Bernstein's theories of educational knowledge and non-school everyday community knowledge, and vertical and horizontal discourses to show how African cultural knowledge is included in educational practice in Zambia, yet excluded from the definition of the purpose of education.
The purpose of this study has been to look at how different stakeholders’ perceive and value the knowledge disseminated in school and the knowledge disseminated in the community. Further it is to investigate how these perceptions of knowledge create spaces or constraints for the utilization of community knowledge in formal education and African solutions in development.
The study took place in two different locations in Eastern Province, Zambia, where one urban and one rural school/community were selected. A significant method in deriving adequate answers has been to compare the two cases.
The study concludes that some globalized ideological ideas, especially neo-liberalism, is disseminated through national policies, government officials, teachers and parents, constraining the utilization of community knowledge. Community knowledge is not deliberately excluded, but is constrained by not being included in a definition of the purpose of education.