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61. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 4 > Issue: 1
Jonathan O. Chimakonam Editorial
62. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 4 > Issue: 2
Conversation
63. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 4 > Issue: 2
Jonathan O. Chimakonam Editorial
64. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 4 > Issue: 2
David A. Oyedola Appiah on Race and Identity in The Illusions of Race: A Rejoinder
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Whether Appiah’s concession in [The Illusions of Race, 1992] that there are no races can stand vis-a-vis Masolo’s submission in “African Philosophy and thePostcolonial: some Misleading Abstractions about Identity” (1997) that identity is impossible, it is worthy to note that much of what is entailed in human societiestend toward the exaltation and protection of self-interest. Self-interest, as it is related to particular or individual entities, to a great extent, presupposes theontology of different races and identities. Paul Taylor in “Appiah’s Uncompleted Argument: W.E.B. Du Bois and the Reality of Race,” to begin with, asserts thatraces and identity struggles are real entities as individuals’: where this can be said to aid and abet racial differences. Though, there are those who lend credenceto Appiah’s and Masolo’s explications like Hountondji and Gyekye; however, it is noteworthy that philosophers like Du Bois, Nkrumah, Fanon, Mandela,Senghor, Hallen and Cabral who, in one way or the other, lend credence to Taylor’s claim, could not have said so without taking into consideration, the colonial and anthropological experiences which has, in one way or the other, has affected Africa and Africans. Despite the latter, certain flaws like (i) the failure toacknowledge the utility and global importance of human race or family, and (ii) the failure to recognize the distinctiveness of each existing race, tribe or ethnicities in a diverse political, religious, and culture-biased world, are inherent in Taylor’s, Appiah’s and Masolo’s views coupled with those who lend credence to their views. In this study, nevertheless, it is conceded that it is not enough, as a derivative of Appiah’s skepticism about race and identity, to gesture at racial andidentity concerns while using logical incoherence, globality, methodological separatism and cosmopolitan traits to undermine the relevance of identity whichis the soul of the postcolonial quest for a distinct African race or black (African) philosophy.
65. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 4 > Issue: 2
Olatunji A. Oyeshile Modernity, Islam and an African Culture
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The human quest for the meaning of life is an unending one marked by undulating landscapes. In order to confront the flux of experience generated by this quest for meaning, the human embraces science, morality, politics and religion. Religion is said to provide the basis for transcendental values which give humans succour after the physical and material struggles have ended. At the same time, religion also uses the observable social world as the starting point for the embrace of transcendental values. In this essay, an attempt is made to examine the interconnectedness of modernity (which has its basis in the social world), Islam (which provides the human with transcendental values) and an African culture (which serves as a nexus of modernity and Islam). The essay is basically an exercise in analysis whereby the readers are made to draw some compelling inferences.
66. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 4 > Issue: 2
Cyril-Mary Pius Olatunji A Philosophical Critique of Ignocentric Search for Political Messiah in Nigeria
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Many of the philosophers of African politics who have argued that the political challenges of Nigeria, and of Africa as a whole are as a result of the impunity andcorruption of post-independence Nigeria leaders also give the impression that the people of Nigeria are mere innocent victims because in their arguments all the ills of the Nigerian state exist only because the country have not experienced or discovered an honest and capable political leader. The scholars argue to the effect that all that Nigeria can do is simply to hope for the ascendance of a Messiah, who being an honest, capable and patriotic leader will on his own volition become committed to the cause of reversing the situation in order to turn around all the ills of the nation. Employing the examples of two prominent scholars of African politics (Chinua Achebe and Larry Diamond) the paper employs the epistemological rigor of analysis and logic to examine and make a critique of the underlying assumptions of the scholars and identifies the theoretical flaws of believing that political representatives are substantively political leaders, that Nigerians are helpless victims who on their own are incapable of reversing the situation and that Nigeria should hope for a political saviour who will turn around all the social and political ills of Nigeria on his own accord.
67. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 4 > Issue: 2
Christian C. Emedolu From Magic to African Experimental Science: Toward a New Paradigm
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This paper assumes that there is a distinction between empirical and non-empirical science. It also assumes that empirical science has two complementary parts, namely, theorization and experimentation. The paper focuses strictly on the experimental aspect of science. It is a call for reformation in African experimental science. Following a deep historical understanding of the revolution that brought about experimental philosophy (as modern empirical science was called up to the time of Newton) this paper admits that magic was the mother, not just the “bastard sister” of empirical science. It uncovers the fact that magic added the dimension of experimentation to science. This paper somewhat maintains that most of the ideas presented by some African scholars contain vestiges of the magical tradition in them. Even though this might not be a flaw by any reasonable standard, the paper still argues that there is a genuine need to separate magic from science, if we ever crave for any form of material/physical progress in Africa. I insist that the thrust of the call for paradigm shift in this paper is centered basically on experimentation. The issue of theoretical entities was introduced only to the extent such entities enhance experimental realism in the practice of African science. Of course, reformation can equally take place at the level of scientific theorization, but that is strictly beyond the scope of this paper. The fact is that those who are versed on the issues of experimentation should begin to get more focused on that aspect; and those who are given to theorization should settle with the formulation of well-structured theories. Time has indeed come for us to properly streamline our thoughts and make progress in the direction of African experimental science. In making this clarion call, we adopted a combined approach of hermeneutics and analysis.
68. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 4 > Issue: 2
Augustine Atabor Postmodernism and Objectivity in the Social Sciences: A re-dress of Nweke's understanding of Atabor
69. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 4 > Issue: 2
Victor C. A. Nweke David Oyedola and the Imperative to Disambiguate the term “African Philosopher”: A Conversation from the standpoint of The Conversational School of Philosophy (CSP)
70. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 4 > Issue: 2
Mesembe I. Edet The Limitations of Bernard Matolino’s “Limited Communitarianism”: Continuing the Conversations on Personhood in African Philosophy
71. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Oseni Taiwo Afisi Is African Science True Science? Reflections on the Methods of African Science
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The general character of science and the methodology it employs are in specific terms referred to as observation and experimentation. These two ethodologiesreflect how science differs from other systematic modes of inquiries. This description characterises, strictly, ‘Western science’ and it is contrasted with the indigenous mode of enquiry that has come under the name, ‘African science’. In contemporary scholarship, ‘African science’ is being condemned to the level of the mysticoreligious or supernaturalist worldview. ‘African science’ is said to be purely esoteric, personal, and devoid of elements of objectivity and rigorous theorization. In this paper, I re-examine this recondite issue by further reflecting and strengthening some of the ideas put forward by some African scholars to affirm that there is a distinct method of ‘African science’ that can be termed scientific. In defending a pluralist thesis toward knowledge, scientific inclusive, this paper posits that there exist varieties of inquiry beyond what has been developed in the ‘West’ which can still be justifiably termed scientific. In addition to pluralism, it argues further that the social character of science, which makes it a part of social and cultural traditions, qualifiedly justifies ‘African science’ as a true science. I will employ the newly formulated conversational method endorsed by the Conversational School of Philosophy (CSP) in this inquiry.
72. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Innocent I. Asouzu Fidelity to Western Metaphysics: A Challenge to Authentic African Existence
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In this paper, I tried to show how Western attitude to reality can be traced to the divisive exclusivist type of mind-set behind Aristotle’s conception of the world. Igesture toward some of the severest consequences of approaching the world with such a mind-set, and how such has complicated matters in some of the major debates in African philosophy. By recourse to ibuanyidanda or complementary philosophy, the author explores ways of addressing some of the challenges approaches of this kind present in view of resolving issues that have relevance for authentic existence.
73. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Jonathan O. Chimakonam Editorial
74. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Aribiah David ATTOE An Essay Concerning the Foundational Myth of Ethnophilosophy
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Ethnophilosophy, although glorified by some African philosophers, remains a problem in our undertakings in African philosophy. In its infancy, the problemrevolved around the call for a total decolonization of African thought and philosophy, which eventually led to the proliferation of a vast array of mostly descriptive literature about the cultural views and practices of the African, sold to us as not only philosophy but genuine African philosophy. In more recent times, due tothe growing development of African philosophy, this drive towards descrciption is gradually waning and from its dying flames, a new and more subtle problem hasarisen. This problem lays in the call by most African philosophers, to make philosophy done in Africa to be more African in nature, the methodology and/orlogic of African philosophy becomes a narrow discourse which is based on the dogma of descriptive story telling of ethnophilosophy. This is the problem which this essay seeks to address. Thus I shall in this essay, expose the myth of ethnophilosophy and thereafter suggest that African philosophy builds its foundation on criticality rather than ethnophilosophy. As an addendum to this, it is also suggested here that the narrow nature of the false descriptive methodology of mainstream African philosophy (which is based on the more subtle implications of ethnophilosophy) be at the very least, de-emphasised. I shall employ conversationalism as the method of my inquiry.
75. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Adeolu Oluwaseyi Oyekan Reparation, Slavery and Political Realism: The Challenge of Contemporary African Leadership
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In spite of some revisionist attempts to rationalise slavery as just another form of trade between interested parties, there is an overwhelming conviction that itrepresented an age of man’s highest inhumanity to fellow man. Accordingly, calls have been loud and persistent as to the need for reparation which though will never compensate for actual loss, nevertheless has the possibility of symbolising penitence and serve as cushion for some of the debilitating damages done. This paper examines the moral basis of the call for reparation. In agreeing with the moral validity of the claims, the paper probes further in a realistic manner and argue that African states in their present situation cannot make a serious case for reparation. The paper argues further that for African states to position themselves for genuine reparation struggles in this age of political realism, urgent steps must be taken to ensure the useful and productive deployment of available resources in Africa and remove the continent from its appendage status with the west. The paper concludes that only when African states are able to break the cycle of poverty and underdevelopment, freeing themselves from external manipulations can a credible and rewarding case for reparation be made.
76. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Victor C. A. Nweke Questioning the Validity, Veracity and Viability of the Case for “Cogno- Normative (Complementary) Epistemology”: A Conversation withChimakonam
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In this short conversation, I will engage Jonathan Chimakonam’s essay entitled “The knowledge Question in African Philosophy: A Case for Cogno-Normative(Complementary) Epistemology” published as the chapter four of [Atuolu Omalu: Some Unanswered Questions in Contemporary African Philosophy]. I will identifythe major submissions of the essay and engage them critically with the aim of opening new vistas of thought. My method will be conversationalim.
77. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Mesembe Ita Edet Innocent Onyewuenyi’s “Philosophical Re-Appraisal of the African Belief in Reincarnation”: A Conversational Study
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Reincarnation has received substantial treatment in African philosophy. The dominant view of African scholars and researchers on the subject is that it is a beliefthat prevails in African culture. The task of this paper is to revisit Innocent Onyewuenyi’s “philosophical reappraisal” of this African belief. Onyewuenyi’s position is that the African communion with ancestors and their influence on theirl living descendant’s has been incorrectly labeled “reincarnation” by Western anthropologists. But whereas Onyewuenyi portrays the problem as being one of semantics, I shall in this paper argue that the challenge of explaining African cultural phenomenon is one of hermeneutics. The question is a question of hermeneutics, because its focus is not on whether ancestors are metaphysical entities, but rather on what they mean within African existence. The paper adopts the conversational method of African philosophy endorsed by the Conversational School of Philosophy. It aims to show how conversationalism as a procedure of philosophical discourse plays out within the context of its specific canons. In the final analysis the paper promotes the thesis that there is not a belief in reincarnation in African culture strictly speaking, but a belief in the regeneration of life. For the African, life is not cyclical, it is rather eternal.
78. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Bolatito A. Lanre-Abass, Matthew E. Oguh Xenophobia and its Implications for Social Order in Africa
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Xenophobia, a form of discrimination practiced in countries, particularly in South Africa, is one of the major challenges confronting the modern day society. This paper examines xenophobia as a menace showing at the same time that this discriminatory practice bifurcates societies by creating a dichotomy amidst the various occupants of the society, thereby giving room for “otherness” rather than “orderliness”. The paper also highlights the philosophical implications of this societal bifurcation, particularly to the human community. Seeking a plausible way of addressing this challenge, the paper concludes by emphasizing the relevance of the value of tolerance in curbing xenophobia.
79. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Olusola Victor Olanipekun Morality, Justice and the Challenge of Execution of Witches in Africa
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The question whether justice can be completely detached from morality seems to be relevant to the discussion of the issues that surround the execution of witches in Africa. In spite the widespread belief in witchcraft in African societies, it is apparent that part of the West as well as the Judeo-Christian traditions also support this view. However, this does not remove the fact that, there are thousands of individuals who are still sceptical about such belief. This paper agrees with the view of those who believe the existence of witchcraft. Thus, despite the fact that many scholars have written on the existence of witchcraft in Africa, little or no attention has been paid to the question of moral implications of executing witches in Africa. An attempt to fill this gap facilitates an investigation into the nexus between morality and social justice. The fundamental problem now is, is it morally right to kill? Should witches be killed? If witches should be executed, are there moral and legal bases for such killing? How should we account for the question of sanctity of human life? In this paper, effort shall be made to answer these fundamental questions. The methods employed in this research are critical analysis, philosophical argumentation and conceptual clarification.
80. Filosofia Theoretica: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Joseph N. Agbo A Monumental contribution to the Genre of African Philosophy, A review of [Existence and Consolation: Reinventing Ontology, Gnosis and Values in African Philosophy]