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Zambia Culture

by Vishal Kumar

Zambia Culture is a unique amalgamation of the cultural traits, traditions and customs of the numerous tribes, who have made Zambia their homeland. Ethnic diversity is the hallmark feature of…

Zambia Culture is a unique amalgamation of the cultural traits, traditions and customs of the numerous tribes, who have made Zambia their homeland.

Ethnic diversity is the hallmark feature of Zambian culture. Zambia, now boasts of people with seventy various ethnic origins.

The land now regarded as Zambia has witnessed several phases of migration. The culture of Zambia, as it has developed, has gradually incorporated the key skills and way of life of these migratory people, to form a coherent whole. The cultural heritage of Zambia is an embodiment of the distinctiveness of each tribe inhabiting the land, yet coalescing to form a unity.

The pre-colonial, colonial and post colonial history of Zambia narrates the process of the formation of Zambia culture. The pre colonial period marked the influx of the tribes while the colonial phase saw these people of varying ethnicities bonding together driven by commercial interests. Another very important influence on the development of Zambia culture was westernization. Never the less, the people of Zambia have always worked towards arriving at a healthy balance between modern value system and traditional value system.

The diversity in Zambian culture is reflected through the cultural forms like music, dance, food, religion, customs and crafts. Drum is an integral part of Zambian music and dance and is a must in all major celebrations. Basket making is Zambia is a popular handicraft and Zambian baskets have earned a global reputation. Zambian customs that accompany important events in life, bring alive the culture of Zambia.

Last but not the least, it is the people of Zambia and their amicable nature, warmth and simplicity that further enhance the beauty of Zambia culture.

Zambia Recipes are represented by traditional and authentic dishes of Zambia, which are relatively homogeneous. Zambia Recipes are sometime eclectic in nature.


It is one of the special Dishes of Zambia, which is prepared with tuber (a form of small potato) cooked in peanut powder and other spices like baking soda, salt and cayenne pepper is a popular dish in Zambia. This recipe is often consumed with Nshima meal.


It is one of the Traditional Recipes of Zambia. It is a local delicacy, which is prepared with hominy and dried beans.
Zambia famous people come from many different factions of the Zambian national life. Whether they are footballers, politicians, authors or musicians, Zambia famous people essentially identify themselves with a Zambian national heritage.

Famous people of Zambia are mostly from politics because Zambia has in its recent past achieved lot through its political freedom. The impact of these political leaders on the national life and on the national mindset have been enormous. Many of the dead politicians, even the living ones are idolized by their country men as the nations warrior heroes. The first president of the country Kenneth Kaunda, holding office from 1964 to 1991 and Levy Mwanawasa president since 2001 to the present times are such leaders with widespread hero worship.

From time immemorial people have visited Zambia for exploring and prospecting for its cheap but efficient labor, and natural resources such as copper, oil, diamonds and gold. Among them are the irrepressible David Livingstone, Cecil Rhodes and Dan Crawford.

Zambia Language is represented by 73 dialects of the country, though English is the official language of Zambia. English,the official Zambia Language is the chief medium of communication in Zambia.

Zambia Language

  • Bemba is the bantu language, spoken by the Bemba people and 18 other cultural groups of Zambia. This Zambia language is also called as Cibemba, Chiwemba and Ichibemba.
  • Lunda, is a Bantu language spoken in Zambia, which is also called Chilunda. 2.6% of Zambians can communicate in this dialect.
  • Tonga is a Bantu dialect spoken by the Tonga people of Southern and Western provinces of Zambia. Tonga along with Lozi, Bemba and Nyanja is the major Language of Zambia.
  • Kaonde, is spoken by more then 350,000 people in Zambia. 3% of Zambians are estimated to be native Kaonde speakers.
  • The process of urbanization leads to dramatic alteration of indigenous Zambia Language due to assimilation with other languages.

Zambia Music boasts of its rich heritage, which is broadly classified as traditional, popular and Christian music of Zambia. Zambia Music is vivid and energetic in nature.

Zambian Popular Music

Popular music of Zambia was the represented by Broadcasting Service of Zambia and associated bands such as Lusaka Radio Band. Congolese rumba predominated Zambian radio. This form of Zambia Music came into existence when Zambian musicians instead of using their folk roots attempted to became pop stars. There was a serious decline in evolution of Zambian popular music in 1990s due to the collapse of entire music industry of Zambia because of economic problems.

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