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1. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Anju Aggarwal Kwame Nkrumah: A Contemporary African Philosopher
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African philosophy in the twentieth century is largely the work of African intellectuals under the influence of philosophical traditions from the colonial countries. Among them are few names such as Amilcar Cabral, Franz Fanon, Kwame Nkrumah, and Julius Nyerere etc. This paper is an attempt to analyze the politicalphilosophy of Nkrumah, first President of Republic of Ghana in West Africa. The paper argues that from the African political and economic point of view Nkrumah advocated a socialist system created out of the enculturation of African humanist values with the inherited European political culture and social traditions to liberate unite and integrate Ghana and rest of Africa. Following an interdisciplinary approach this paper assesses Nkrumah’s thought both as an individual, intellectual and as a politician. His book ‘Consciencism’ describes the more political than socio-economic approach to class contradictions in African society. In his ‘Handbook of Revolutionary Warfare’ he talked of three objectives i.e. nationalism, pan-Africanism and socialism. He offered the African liberationmovement a strategy of socialist revolution. Nkrumah who had earlier embraced Gandhian non-violence positive action later adopted the Fanonian lines of revolutionary violence recommending the use of universal method i.e. armed struggle to defeat colonialism.. Nkrumah played an important part in spreading the ideas of socialism in Africa. He had a holistic politico-cultural thought that was reflected in many of his speeches and works. Though critics in his thought have found profound contradictions or confusions but none can obscure the main achievements. Remembered as ‘the redeemer’ by the Africans, he provided the charisma they needed for a leading statesman against any form of imperialism.
2. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
António Tomas Ana, Patrício Batsîkama Etonian Jusphilosophy
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The term etonism is from «Etona» that means flag, marks, evidence, and reason in Kikôngo. The variants in Umbûndu: etonolo or etonuilo means, allegations, reasons, indulgence (tolerance). The Nyaneka form is etŏnya: 1) reasons, 2) allegations, 3) indulgence and 5) the justice and the tolerance. Etona is Angolan artist (sculptor/painter). In his sculpture they are morphologically evidenced three treatments in the surface of the matter, namely 1) flat treatment; 2) rude treatment and finally 3) accidental treatment. Each one is a code: #1. The flat treatment indicates well-knowledge; a man of superior class; race or tribe or religion of majority; thought well-organized and structured. In painting, the hot intensity indicates dominance, prosperity, energy, intense desires; #2. The rude treatment reveals an acquired knowledge without academism, self-taught; medium class men; speech out of the scientific perimeters but with certain admissibility; race, tribe or religion of lot of people, but not of majority. In his painting, the neutral intensity marks the balance and inspires recomfort nurtured from two opposed poles (hot and cold); #3. The accidental part of the sculpture indicates some knowledge’s lack (pure empiricism); inferior class; race, tribe, religion of minority. In the painting, the cold intensity is naturally contrary of #1. Etonism is the tolerant reason between #1=I, #2=YOU and #3=HE. All of them form the coherent society that we call WE: the Etonian jusphilosophy that African peoples need for stability of their democracies and finishing their War.
3. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
António Tomas Ana, Patrício Batsîkama Etonism, Philosophy of Tolerant Reason: A Suggestion in Angola After-war
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The term etonism reflects the Angolan ancestral philosophy… Etona in Kikôngo, etonolo or etonuilo in Umbûndu: allegations, reasons, indulgence (tolerance). In Nyaneka form is etŏnya. These significances constitute the essence of the etonism: 1) reasons, 2) allegations, 3) indulgence, 4) evidence that generates the justice and the tolerance. «Who is correct tolerates who is wrong». Also, Etonism identifies 1) racism, 2) tribalism and 3) discrimination as a serious sequel of neo-colonialism, and calls the attention of the Angolan people, using roots of angolanity safeguarding a harmonious society in the future. It suggests the tolerant reason as one of the main form of tranquility in Angola after-war.
4. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Oladele Abiodun Balogun Rethinking the Tasks of African Philosophy in the 21st Century
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The flurry of debate that trailed the existence of African philosophy in the 1960s and 70s and the consequent demise of the controversies in the late 1990s have occasioned a periodiszation shift from traditional African philosophy to contemporary African philosophy. While the scope and nature of predominant issues inthese periods differ considerably, what ought to constitute the basis and shape the direction of discourse in contemporary African philosophy remain controversial. In this regard, this paper argues that rethinking African philosophy should be high on the agenda. It harps that more fundamental to contemporary African philosophy, is the critical need for self-assessment and re-evaluation, which would involve rethinking the nature, direction, scope, method and place of African philosophy. Rethinking African philosophy is a cognitive process of charting a new course of pragmatic reflection on metaphysical, epistemological, ethical, aesthetical, social and political themes in contemporary African philosophy, in order to make relevant philosophical abstraction to practical human problems inthe continent. The case is justifiably made that those African philosophers should make the influence of their speculations spill beyond the confine of academic citadel to the outside world such that will influence the lives of contemporary Africans.
5. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Igwilo Malachy Chidike Philosophy, Praxis and the Challenge of Development in Africa
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This paper focuses on the nature of philosophy and its practices in Africa in the face of development challenges facing the continent. Philosophy in African has been seen as a tool for the search for meaning and a means for assuaging our existential predicaments. But central to the temper of recent philosophy inAfrica is the search for praxis, which somewhat limits philosophy to only a means of assuaging existential predicaments. This quest for praxis is destroying some aspects of philosophy, which are equally important, that is analysis and theorizing. This is a major problem because the philosophy that emerges out of the urgency for praxis, without consideration for analysis and theory, is bereft of that rigorous criticality which arises from a thoroughgoing analysis and theorizing. This paper using the philosophical tools of analysis and criticism is asking for a return to rigorous philosophy through the analysis of concepts and theorizing. This paper submits that it is only through the process of analysis and theorizing that concepts are better understood and then placed at the service of developmentinitiatives in Africa, such that a model of integral development will emerge. A model based on certain considerations for context, culture and history.
6. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Maduabuchi Dukor Feminism in Theistic Humanism: The Question of Gender Discourse in African Philosophy
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An inquiry into the ontology of critical gender consciousness in Africa Philosophy is long over due. “Hitherto a discourse on Gender problems has lost focus because of the tendency to leave out the gaps in culture created by colonial experience, modernity’s assaults and unAfricaness in ontology and essence. It is argued that the fulcrum for a legitimate feminist doctrine is Theistic Humanism, the philosophy of African philosophy that exposes the epistemological and metaphysical basis of the rightful and ethical place of women in the society without injury, injustice and abuse on womanhood. Theistic Humanism as an ontology and cosmology abhors class struggle between husbands and wives, sons and daughters etc. Class struggle between men and women degenerated from the oneness of being ontology and Gender community where husbands and wives were happily married with different complementary social roles for the preservation of society.
7. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Zekeh S. Gbotokuma Pan-Bantuist Globalization and African Development: Will Things Fall Apart Again?
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Historically, the sub-Saharan Africans’ being-in-the-world with other peoples and nations has been characterized by a ‘Black-Out,’ or the exclusion of black Africans from full humanity and the violation of their human rights through slavery, colonization, apartheid, etc. So far globalization looks like another ‘Black-Out’ or recolonization, Westernization, homogenization, the universalization of the particular, and a jungle rather than an opportunity for all. This conception of globalization has resulted in skepticisms about, and fear of the phenomenon. Antiglobalization movements – e.g., the World Social Forum - are the expression of many people’s feelings about globalization. The 21st-century globalization cannot be really global except by being a dynamic synthesis of all peoples’ culturaland economic values. So in this paper I argue that despite the potential benefits of globalization, African peoples – more than anybody else - have good reasons to fear and/ or be skeptical about it. This is due to the negativities and the paradoxical nature of globalization on the one hand; and the African colonial andneocolonial experience, on the other. I propose an alternative to “the savage globalization” or ‘junglobalization.’ I will call it ‘Pan-Bantuist Globalization.’ It is intended to move globalization from Eurocentrism and/or any other negative ethnocentrism to ‘pan-anthropocentrism’ or ‘pan-Bantucentrism,’ thereby creatingconditions for inclusion, equality, brotherhood/sisterhood, and respect for human rights. In other words, Pan-Bantuist Globalization is concerned with democratizing and civilizing the savage globalization through an ethic of globalization, i.e., a global ethics that is based on the golden rule, human rights, ‘Ubuntu’, ‘Maat’, and ‘Yin-Yang’. If acted upon this ethics, noboby – including Africans – will be left behind and things will not fall apart again.
8. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Bekele Gutema Some Reflections on the African University
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Some of the African universities were established just over half a century ago, the overwhelming majority of them coming into being after independence. They came into being largely not on the basis of the desire of the African peoples but rather to serve a purpose related to colonialism. Even when this was not the purpose, the way they were established and organized, i. e. irrelevant curricula biased against the local knowledge and culture and an equally biased faculty made higher education in Africa into a white elephant. Lack of resources and irrelevance of curricula did not enable the African university to play the role that is expected of it. The developments since the 1980s show the dependence of African universities. The so‐called reforms of the World Bank and Co. are meant to reduce African universities to vocational schools. Taking these into account the paper argues that the African university must try to recreate itself by overcoming extraversion and restructuring itself in such a way that it is ready to use universal knowledge without undermining indigenous knowledge.
9. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Workineh Kelbessa African Philosophy of Sex and the HIV/AIDS Epidemic
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The aim of this study is to undertake an in-depth conceptual and ethical analysis of African philosophy of sex and the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Africa by taking the Oromo of Ethiopia as an example. The continent with just 10% of the world’s population is home to over 70% of the world’s HIV/AIDS infection. HIV/AIDS is a social, economic, demographic and moral problem as well as a health care issue. Some scholars hypothesise that the unique nature of African sexuality, sexual promiscuity, the prevalence of other ailments, and the unique nature of the viral subtypes (known as clades) are the major reasons for Africa’s AIDS prevalence. However, there is little substance to their hypotheses. As of today there is no sound explanation for the prevalence of HIV/AIDS in Africa. So far the HIVintervention has largely focused on behaviours, systems and structures which are visible without fully taking into account culture, values, norms and traditions which are invisible but have a strong influence on visible aspects of individual behaviours and societal structures. Thus, this issue requires further research into people’s philosophy of sex and indigenous moral values. This study and the contributions of many scholars have shown that Africans have a diverse spectrum of sexual behaviour ranging from the very restrictive to the permissive. Although some ethnic groups have developed a profound philosophy of ex that can curb the expansion of HIV/AIDS, there have been some sexual and religious norms and expectations in Africa that have contributed to the rapid spread of HIV/AIDS. Social, economical, and political forces have also shaped the HIV/AIDS epidemic. This paper thus suggests that global fight against HIV/AIDS should go beyond a narrow focus on the behavioural and biological, and consider broader structural and underlying factors such as poverty, homelessness, widespread sex work, rural to urban migration, instability, a high rate of unemployment, unequal gender relations, harmful traditional practice and global injustice that have facilitated the spread of HIV/AIDS. African governments should involve the local people and civil society organisations in the fight against HIV/AIDS by using a wide range of participatory methodologies and culturally sensitive advocacy strategies. This study thus suggests that a multi-faceted approach is needed to deal with the challenges of the 21st century and address the HIV/AIDS epidemic in our world. This study relies on literature review, interviews and personal observation.
10. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Gail M. Presbey Secularism and Rationality in Odera Oruka’s Sage Philosophy Project
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Prof. H. Odera Oruka started the sage philosophy project, in which he interviewed wise elders in Kenyan rural areas to show that Africans could philosophize. He intended to create a “national culture” by drawing upon sages from different ethnic groups and he downplayed religious differences, as did Kwame Nkrumah, who had a similar goal of building “national culture” in Ghana. Both projects were secular insofar as they preferred to emphasize rationality and downplay religious belief or “superstition” as backward and needing to be cast off. I deal with one apparent counter-example: at the burial trial for S. M. Otieno, Odera Oruka seemed to defend the traditional Luo belief of spirits. I note, however, that Odera Oruka is evasive and indirect in how he answers the questions and his responses could be due to his wanting to appear connected to his rural compatriots, a value explained by Frantz Fanon in his treatment of the topic of national culture. The paper concludes by alluding to extensive interviews done with the sages from Kenya on topics related to religious beliefs and practices, during which sages subject those beliefs and practices to rational scrutiny.
11. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Daniel Smith The Challenge and Responsibility of Universal Otherness in African Philosophy
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This paper seeks to reflect on the challenges of developing a new graduate program in philosophy at Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. What does it mean to establish a program that both retain a commitment to the universal aspirations of a global discipline while being true to its Ethiopian and African roots. Various prominent philosophers who have addressed such issues on a general level are invoked in order to try and clarify this challenge such as Paulin Hountondji, Michel Foucault, Jurgen Habermas, Henrique Dussel, and Jacques Derrida. In conclusion a general ethos is suggested for how such a philosophical projection into the future might be possible as an indication of the role of philosophy and philosophers in the 21st century.
12. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Flavia Stara John Dewey’s Philosophy and Chinese Culture
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13. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Olúfêmi Táíwò Rethinking Political Philosophy in Modern Africa: a Proposal
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What would happen if, instead of taking an instrumentalist view of the ideas of modern African political thinkers, we consider those ideas as indeed they are, attempts by them to proffer answers to the central questions of political philosophy as those are apprehended in the African context? If we did, we would end upwith a robust, sophisticated discourse properly denominated ‘Modern African Political Philosophy’ in which we recognize, possibly celebrate and, ultimately, assess the quality of answers that African thinkers have provided. The importance of recognizing a body of work under this genre cannot be overemphasized given the many debates, controversies, misrepresentations abroad in accounts of the relationship between Africa and modernity. It is almost as if there is only one way that African thinkers have related to modernity: in antagonism. I argue that one can give an account in political philosophy that shows that the received wisdom is profoundly mistaken. To do so requires that we rethink political philosophy in the modern African context.
articles in french
14. Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 28
Nassira Hedjerassi, Abaly Hodanou L’autorité dans les conceptions éducatives en milieu watsi du Togo: une approche philosophico-sémantique
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La recherche présentée trouve son origine dans la situation de crise générale que traverserait l’autorité au niveau politique, religieux comme éducatif au Togo. Dans le contexte de confrontation de l’éducation dite traditionnelle au modèle éducatif véhiculé par l’école, produit de la colonisation ou de la rencontre avec l’Europe, nous nous proposons d’examiner les conceptions et pratiques de l’autorité dans l’éducation togolaise aujourd’hui. Peut-on parler de crise de l’autorité, dans le même sens que Hannah Arendt pour le contexte etatsunien ? Si oui, pourquoi fait-elle problème ? C’est sous l’angle philosophico-sémantique que cette recherche aborde cette problématique.