PLS 1502- AFRICAN PHILOSOPHY OCT/NOV
PLS 1502- AFRICAN PHILOSOPHY OCT/NOV SECTION A 1.1 Identify 3 sources for the term Africa as discussed in Study unit 1. (6) The Mediterranean provided a platform for cultural interaction between and among the Romans and the Greeks..That was to be known as North Africa. This was the platform for cultural interaction between and among the Romans and Greeks, the peoples of North Africa and the Arabs. This cultural interaction in the Mediterranean cultural space that the name Africa imaged. Secondly, it was in terms of the interaction and relations between the Greeks and the Romans on the one hand and the people of North Africa on the other. Thus it is clear that the name Africa is a description of the Greek and roman experiences of the continent’s climate. Lastly the term Africa speaks more of the west European historical experience with the people of the continent and much less of these people’s experience of their own self understanding. In other words, the history of Africa is mainly the history of the story of the peoples of the continent about themselves. 1.2 THE GREAT SHORT-COMINGS OF THE ETHNO-PHILOSOPHY IS THAT IT DERIVED NOT FROM THE CRITICAL BUT THE UNCRITICAL PART OF AFRICAN TRADITION (OROKA,2002 50). RELATING TO THE ABOVE QUOTE, CRITICALLY DISCUSS H. ODERA ORUKA’S FIRST TREND i.e. ETHNO-PHILOSOPHY WHICH HE EXAMINES IN HIS ARTICLE ‘FOUR TRENDS IN CURRENT PHILOSOPHY’ (2002) (12) Oruka’s classification comes from the English –speaking side and does not represent Francophone African philosophy in his classification. The four-fold classification is as follows, (1) ethno philosophy (ideas of philosophers who try to reconstruct a traditional Bantu or indigenous world view. (2) Sage philosophy (ideas of African sages on selected philosophical issues) (3) nationalist ideological philosophers (ideas of politicians on the social, cultural and economic reconstruction of African countries in a post-colonial era and (4) professional philosophy (ideas of professionally trained students and teachers of philosophy in Africa. Downloaded by Lee-Ann Smith () lOMoARcPSD| Oruka’s shortcomings are dealt with in an abstract way..He does not give examples and thus does not classify specific philosophers. This leads to a further problem, of who belongs to which category. For instance ‘negritude’ looks as if it belongs under ethno philosophy, but Senghor can be seen as a professional philosopher. The category of professional philosopher may thus be questioned because it is a different kind of category from the others and too hospitable. Different approaches are put there in spite of radical differences. According to Oruka, there is no radical difference between European and African philosophy – philosophy remains, irrespective of where it is being practiced. This is off course not an acceptable view. Oruka distinguishes between philosophy and what he sees as quasi-philosophy. They think that ethno philosophers can present to the discourse of African philosophy both interesting and useful material on which to draw for analysis of the traditional and cultural manifestation of African existence. They indirectly suggest that the ethno philosophy category should have had the more positive label of cultural philosophy. Furthermore at the time that this article was written originally, sage philosophy was not much of a trend.