Zimbabwean Culture

Other Considerations

  • Drinking alcohol is frowned upon in Zimbabwe. Few people drink socially, and those who do are often considered ‘drunkards’ even if they do not drink excessively. This differs significantly from the Australian drinking culture.
  • HIV/AIDS has seriously affected families in Zimbabwe. Whole generations of parents have passed away in some communities, meaning there are many orphans being raised by their grandmothers.
  • It is common for people to pay casual car guards a tip while they run errands. These people stop parking inspectors from ticketing the car.
  • Pets are rarely allowed indoors in Zimbabwean homes. Therefore, if you have a pet and you are inviting a Zimbabwean to your house, inform them in advance about the pet.
  • Homosexual activity is illegal in Zimbabwe and strongly stigmatized. The LGBTQI+ community may face conservative attitudes.
  • Some Shona and Ndebele groups practise permanent body modification to show a particular lineage, identity or social class. Scarification (nyora) and piercing (kuboora or ringindi) are common.
  • There is a language called Chilapalapa that is a fusion of Bantu, Afrikaans and English languages. It was developed for African workers and colonial bosses to communicate and is not appropriate to use. It implies a hierarchical colonial relationship.
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