From early sage philosophers to Senghor of Senegal and Biko of South Africa, African thinking has challenged the way we think. As we enter a new millenium, the perspectives provided in this volume offer wise and refreshing alternatives to problems of self and society, culture, aesthetics, metaphysics and religion. Out of Africa always something new, and in these pages contemporary problems of cross-cultural cognition and post-coloniality are not only addressed, but also enacted. The reader witnesses the collision and the coalescence (...) of cultures in the writings of philosophers from Africa. The authors are South African academics involved in the teaching and development of courses in African Philosophy in South Africa, Malawi and Botswana. Most are also associated with the Research Unit for African Philosophy, established at the University of South Africa in 1994, which has initiated programmes and activities that have gained support from African philosophers from all over the continent. (shrink)
Theorizing Black Feminisms outlines some of the crucial debates going on among Black feminists today. In doing so it brings together a collection of some of the most exciting work by Black women scholars. The book encompasses a wide range of diverse subjects and refuses to be limited by notions of disciplinary boundaries or divisions between theory and practice. Theorizing Black Feminisms combines essays on literature, sociology, history, political science, anthropology, and art. As such it will be vital reading for (...) anyone--activist, student, artist or scholar--interested in exploring the multidisciplinary possibilities for Black feminism. Most importantly, each essay in the volume begins with the assumption that Black women are not simply victims of various oppressions. Rather, they are visionary and pragmatic agents of change. Contributors: Evelyn Barbee, University of Wisconsin; Rose Brewer, University of Minnesota; Cheryl Clarke, Rutgers University; Johnnetta Cole, Spelman College; Cindy Courville, Occidental College; Beverly Guy-Sheftall, Spelman College; Marilyn Little, University of Wisconsin; Nellie McKay, University of Wisconsin; O'molara Ogundipe, Rutgers University; Christine Obbo, Wayne State University; Loretta Ross, Center for Democratic Renewal, Atlanta. (shrink)
Reparations is an idea whose time has come. From civilian victims of war in Iraq and South America to descendents of slaves in the US to citizens of colonized nations in Africa and south Asia to indigenous peoples around the world--these groups and their advocates are increasingly arguing for the importance of addressing historical injustices that have long been either ignored or denied. This volume contributes to these debates by focusing the attention of a group of highly distinguished international experts (...) on the ways that reparations claims figure in contemporary political and social justice movements. Four broad types of reparations claims are examined, those involving indigenous peoples, the legacy of slavery in the United States, victims of war and conflict, and colonialism. In each instance, scholars and activists argue about the character of the injustice for which reparations are owed, why it is important to take these demands seriously, and what form redress should take. The aim is not consensus but to exhibit better the complexity of the issues involved--a goal which the interdisciplinary nature of the volume furthers--as well as the importance of taking seriously both conceptual issues and the actual politics of reparations. (shrink)
The eminent Ghanaian philosopher Kwasi Wiredu confronts the paradox that while Western cultures recoil from claims of universality, previously colonized peoples, seeking to redefine their identities, insist on cultural particularities.
The intellectual history of the last quarter of this century has been marked by the growing influence of Africana thought--an area of philosophy that focuses on issues raised by the struggle over ideas in African cultures and their hybrid forms in Europe, the Americas, and the Caribbean. Existentia Africana is an engaging and highly readable introduction to the field of Africana philosophy and will help to define this rapidly growing field. Lewis R. Gordon clearly explains Africana existential thought to a (...) general audience, covering a wide range of both classic and contemporary thinkers--from Douglass and DuBois to Fanon, Davis and Zack. (shrink)
An invaluable introduction to this dynamic and growing area of study, Imbo's book synthesizes the ideas of key African philosophers into an accessible narrative. By making cross-disciplinary and transnational connections, Imbo stakes out an important place for Africanphilosophy.
What can philosophy contribute to African culture? What can it draw from it? Could there be a truly African philosophy that goes beyond traditional folk thought? Kwasi Wiredu tries in these essays to define and demonstrate a role for contemporary African philosophers which is distinctive but by no means parochial. He shows how they can assimilate the advances of analytical philosophy and apply them to the general social and intellectual changes associated with 'modernisation' and the transition to new national identities. (...) But we see too how they can exploit traditional resources and test the assumptions of Western philosophy against the intimations of their own language and culture. The volume as a whole presents some of the best non-technical work of a distinguished African philosopher, of importance equally to professional philosophers and to those with a more general interest in contemporary African thought and culture. (shrink)
This book traces the theory of violence from nineteenth-century symmetrical warfare through today's warfare of electronics and unbalanced numbers. Surveying such luminaries as Walter Benjamin, Frantz Fanon, Hannah Arendt, Paul Virilio, and Jacques Derrida, Avelar also offers a discussion of theories of torture and confession, the work of Roman Polanski and Borges, and a meditation on the rise of the novel in Colombia.
In the last two decades the idea of African Philosophy has undergone significant change and scrutiny. Some critics have maintained that the idea of a system of philosophical thought tied to African traditions is incoherent. In African Philosophy Lee Brown has collected new essays by top scholars in the field that in various ways respond to these criticisms and defend the notion of African Philosophy. The essays address both epistemological and metaphysical issues that are specific to the traditional conceptual languages (...) of sub-Saharan Africa. The primary focus of the collection is on traditional African conceptions of topics like mind, person, personal identity, truth, knowledge, understanding, objectivity, destiny, free will, causation, and reality. The contributors--who include Leke Adeofe, Kwame Anthony Appiah, Lee Brown, Segun Gbadegesin, D.A. Masolo, Albert Mosley, Ifeanyi Menkiti, and Kwasi Wiredu--incorporate concerns from various African philosophical traditions, including Akan, Azande, Bokis, Igno, Luo, and Yoruba. African Philosophy ultimately tries to bring a more rigorous conception of African philosophy into fruitful contact with Western philosophical concerns, specifically in the philosophies of psychology, mind, science, and language, as well as in metaphysics and epistemology. It will appeal to both scholars and students. (shrink)
Kwame Gyekye offers a philosophical interpretation and critical analysis of the African cultural experience in modern times. Critically employing Western political and philosophical concepts to clear, comparative advantage, Gyekye addresses a wide range of concrete problems afflicting postcolonial African states, such as ethnicity and nation-building, the relationship of tradition to modernity, the nature of political authority and political legitimation, political corruption, and the threat to traditional moral and social values, practices, and institutions in the wake of rapid social change.
Understanding African Philosophy serves as a critical guide to some of the most important issues in modern African philosophy. Richard Bell introduces readers to the complexity of Africa, the legacy of colonialism, the challenges of post independence Africa, and other recent developments in African Philosophy. Chapters discuss the value of African oral and written texts for philosophy, concepts of "negritude," "African socialism," and "race," as well as current discussions in international development ethics connected to poverty and human suffering. Two chapters (...) are focused on moral issues related to community, justice, and civic responsibility. Bell's sensitivity to and engagement with the complications of cross-cultural understandings help non-African readers connect with African culture and thought. (shrink)
Hermeneutics is a crucial but neglected perspective in Africanphilosophy. Here, Tsenay Serequeberhan engages post-colonial African literature and the ideas of the African liberation struggle with critically-used insights from the European philosophical tradition. Continuing the work of Theophilus Okere and Okonda Okolo, this book attempts to overcome the debate between ethnophilosophy and professional philosophy, demonstrating that the promise of Africanphilosophy lies with the critical development of the African hermeneutical perspective.
Author note: Naomi Zack is Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy at the State University of New York at Albany. She herself is of mixed race: Jewish, African American, and Native American.
This book demonstrates how the indigenous wisdom contained in African proverbs and folktales can be used to enhance modern life. The timeless wisdom enriches the understanding of self-development and positive influence, contributing towards the much-needed, cross-cultural dialogue among individuals, organizations, and societies in this increasingly diversified world.
Focusing on the barriers between social work intervention in education and government funded programs that impact African American students, this book approaches these issues from a child-centered perspective. Interviews with ten African American students were conducted to discuss their perspectives on education, family life, and social work intervention.
When abolitionists Thomas Clarkson and Ottobah Cugoano published their essays on slavery in the late eighteenth century, they became key participants in one of the most important human rights campaigns in history. British abolitionism sought to expose the realities of transatlantic slavery in addition to asking politicians to help dehumanized Africans in the New World, and this edition brings together two major essays of the 1780s that were influential in the spread of the early abolitionist movement: Clarkson's An Essay on (...) the Slavery and Commerce of the Human Species and Cugoano's Thoughts and Sentiments on the Evil and Wicked Traffic of the Slavery and Commerce of the Human Species. A critical introduction and extensive historical appendices on British and American slavery and abolitionism, featuring contemporary arguments for and against slavery, are also included. (shrink)
In this timely book, Eddie S. Glaude Jr., one of our nation’s rising young African American intellectuals, makes an impassioned plea for black America to address its social problems by recourse to experience and with an eye set on the promise and potential of the future, rather than the fixed ideas and categories of the past. Central to Glaude’s mission is a rehabilitation of philosopher John Dewey, whose ideas, he argues, can be fruitfully applied to a renewal of African American (...) politics. According to Glaude, Dewey’s pragmatism, when attentive to the darker dimensions of life—or what we often speak of as the blues—can address many of the conceptual problems that plague contemporary African American discourse. How blacks think about themselves, how they imagine their own history, and how they conceive of their own actions can be rendered in ways that escape bad ways of thinking that assume a tendentious political unity among African Americans simply because they are black, or that short-circuit imaginative responses to problems confronting actual black people. Drawing deeply on black religious thought and literature, In a Shade of Blue seeks to dislodge such crude and simplistic thinking, and replace it with a deeper understanding of and appreciation for black life in all its variety and intricacy. Only when black political leaders acknowledge such complexity, Glaude argues, can the real-life sufferings of many African Americans be remedied. Heady, inspirational, and brimming with practical wisdom, In a Shade of Blue is a remarkable work of political commentary on a scale rarely seen today. To follow its trajectory is to learn how African Americans arrived at this critical moment in their history and to envision where they might head in the twenty-first century. (shrink)
Introduction to the study of African Christian ethics -- Foundations of contemporary African ethics -- Foundations of Western ethics -- Foundations of Christian ethics -- Foundations of African Christian ethics -- Applying African Christian ethics -- Church and state -- War and violence -- Strikes -- Poverty -- Corruption -- Fund-raising -- Procreation and infertility -- Reproductive technologies -- Contraception -- Polygamy -- Domestic violence -- Divorce and remarriage -- Widows and orphans -- Rape -- Incest -- Prostitution and sex (...) trafficking -- Female circumcision -- Homosexuality -- HIV/AIDS -- Abortion -- Euthanasia and infanticide -- Strikes and medical services -- Drug and alcohol abuse -- Witchcraft. (shrink)