African philosophy

African philosophy is the philosophical discourse produced by indigenous Africans and their descendants, including African/Americans. African philosophy presents a wide range of topics similar to its Eastern and Western counterparts. African philosophers may be found in the various academic fields of philosophy, such as metaphysics, epistemology, moral philosophy, and political philosophy. One particular subject that many African philosophers have written about is that on the subject of freedom and what it means to be free or to experience wholeness.[1] Philosophy in Africa has a rich and varied history, some of which has been lost over time.[2] One of the earliest known African philosophers was Ptahhotep, an ancient Egyptian philosopher. In the early and mid-twentieth century, anti-colonial movements had a tremendous effect on the development of a distinct African political philosophy that had resonance on both the continent and in the African diaspora. One well-known example of the economic philosophical works emerging from this period was the African socialist philosophy of Ujamaa propounded in Tanzania and other parts of Southeast Africa. These African political and economic philosophical developments also had a notable impact on the anti-colonial movements of many non-African peoples around the world.

Souleymane Bachir Diagne-Strasbourg-Septembre 2018 (1)
Senegalese philosopher Souleymane Bachir Diagne


There is some debate in defining the ethnophilosophical parameters of African philosophy and identifying what differentiates it from other philosophical traditions. One of the implicit assumptions of ethnophilosophy is that a specific culture can have a philosophy that is not applicable and accessible to all peoples and cultures in the world., In A Discourse on African Philosophy: A New Perspective on Ubuntu and Transitional Justice in South Africa, Christian B. N. Gade argues that the ethnophilosophical approach to African philosophy as a static group property is highly problematic. His research on ubuntu presents an alternative collective discourse on African philosophy that takes differences, historical developments, and social contexts seriously. According to Edwin Etieyibo and Jonathon O. Chimakonam in their article “African Philosophy: Past, Present, and Future”, historical context plays an important role in African philosophy. History provides the framework in which we can inspect philosophical problems. In terms of African philosophy, one must look at the whole picture through the lens of African history.  “There are no facts without history." [3]

African philosophy can be formally defined as a critical thinking by Africans on their experiences of reality. Nigerian born Philosopher K.C. Anyanwu defined African philosophy as "that which concerns itself with the way in which African people of the past and present make sense of their destiny and of the world in which they live. [4]

Nigerian philosopher Joseph I. Omoregbe broadly defines a philosopher as one who attempts to understand the world's phenomena, the purpose of human existence, the nature of the world, and the place of human beings in that world. This form of natural philosophy is identifiable in Africa even before individual African philosophers can be distinguished in the sources.[5] Like Western philosophy, African philosophy contemplates the perceptions of time, personhood, space and other subjects.



North Africa

In North Africa, arguably central to the development of the ancient Egyptian philosophical tradition of Egypt and Sudan was the conception of "ma'at", which roughly translated refers to "justice", "truth", or simply "that which is right". One of the earliest works of political philosophy was The Maxims of Ptahhotep, which were taught to Egyptian schoolboys for centuries.

Ancient Egyptian philosophers also made important contributions to Hellenistic philosophy and Christian philosophy. In the Hellenistic tradition, the influential philosophical school of Neoplatonism was founded by the Egyptian philosopher Plotinus in the 3rd century CE.

West Africa

The most prominent of West Africa's pre-modern philosophical traditions has been identified as that of the Yoruba philosophical tradition and the distinctive worldview that emerged from it over the thousands of years of its development. Philosophical concepts such as Omoluabi were integral to this system, and the totality of its elements are contained in what is known amongst the Yoruba as the Itan. The cosmologies and philosophies of the Akan, Dogon. Serer and Dahomey were also significant.

In pre-colonial Senegambia (Gambia and Senegal in particular), the 17th-century philosopher Kocc Barma Fall stood out as one of the renown philosophers in Senegambian history. His proverbs are still recited by Senegalese and Gambians alike, including in Senegambian popular culture - for example in Ousmane Sembene's films such as Guelwaar[4][5] Other notable philosophical thinkers include the Gambian historian Alieu Ebrima Cham Joof, and the Malian ethnologist Amadou Hampâté Bâ.

Horn of Africa

In the Horn of Africa, there are a number of sources documenting the development of a distinct Ethiopian philosophy from the first millennium onwards. Among the most notable examples from this tradition emerge from the work of the 17th-century philosopher Zera Yacob, and that of his disciples. Yacob in his writings discusses religion, morality, and existence. He comes to the belief that every person will believe their faith to be the right one and that all men are created equal.[6]

Southern Africa

In Southern Africa and Southeast Africa the development of a distinctive Bantu philosophy addressing the nature of existence, the cosmos and humankind's relation to the world following the Bantu migration has had the most significant impact on the philosophical developments of the said regions, with the development of the philosophy of Ubuntu as one notable example emerging from this worldview.

Central Africa

Many Central African philosophical traditions before the Bantu migration into southern Central Africa have been identified as a uniting characteristic of many Nilotic and Sudanic peoples, ultimately giving rise to the distinctive worldviews identified in the conceptions of time, the creation of the world, human nature, and the proper relationship between mankind and nature prevalent in Dinka mythology, Maasai mythology and similar traditions.

African Diaspora

Some pre-Modern African diasporic philosophical traditions have also been identified, mostly produced by descendants of Africans in Europe and the Americas. One notable pre-modern diasporic African philosopher was Anthony William Amo, who was taken as a slave from Awukenu in what is now Ghana, and was brought up and educated in Europe where he gained doctorates in medicine and philosophy, and subsequently became a professor of philosophy at the universities of Halle Halle and Jena in Germany.


Kenyan philosopher Henry Odera Oruka has distinguished what he calls four trends in modern African philosophy: ethnophilosophy, philosophical sagacity, nationalistic–ideological philosophy, and professional philosophy.[7] In fact it would be more realistic to call them candidates for the position of African philosophy, with the understanding that more than one of them might fit the bill. (Oruka later added two additional categories: literary/artistic philosophy, such as the work of literary figures such as Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o, Wole Soyinka, Chinua Achebe, Okot p'Bitek, and Taban Lo Liyong, and hermeneutic philosophy, the analysis of African languages in order to find philosophical content.) In the African diaspora, American philosopher Maulana Karenga has also been notable in presenting varied definitions for understanding modern African philosophy, especially as it relates to its earliest sources.

Ethnophilosophy and philosophical sagacity

Ethnophilosophy has been used to record the beliefs found in African cultures. Such an approach treats African philosophy as consisting in a set of shared beliefs, values, categories, and assumptions that are implicit in the language, practices, and beliefs of African cultures; in short, the uniquely African worldview. As such, it is seen as an item of communal property rather than an activity for the individual.

One proponent of this form, Placide Tempels, argued in Bantu Philosophy that the metaphysical categories of the Bantu people are reflected in their linguistic categories. According to this view, African philosophy can be best understood as springing from the fundamental assumptions about reality reflected in the languages of Africa.

Another example of this sort of approach is the work of E. J. Algoa of the University of Port Harcourt in Nigeria, who argues for the existence of an African philosophy of history stemming from traditional proverbs from the Niger Delta in his paper "An African Philosophy of History in the Oral Tradition." Algoa argues that in African philosophy, age is seen as an important factor in gaining wisdom and interpreting the past. In support of this view, he cites proverbs such as "More days, more wisdom", and "What an old man sees seated, a youth does not see standing." Truth is seen as eternal and unchanging ("Truth never rots"), but people are subject to error ("Even a four-legged horse stumbles and falls"). It is dangerous to judge by appearances ("A large eye does not mean keen vision"), but first-hand observation can be trusted ("He who sees does not err"). The past is not seen as fundamentally different from the present, but all history is contemporary history ("A storyteller does not tell of a different season"). The future remains beyond knowledge ("Even a bird with a long neck cannot see the future"). Nevertheless, it is said, "God will outlive eternity." History is seen as vitally important ("One ignorant of his origin is nonhuman"), and historians (known as "sons of the soil") are highly revered ("The son of the soil has the python's keen eyes"). However, these arguments must be taken with a grain of cultural relativism, as the span of culture in Africa is incredibly vast, with patriarchies, matriarchies, monotheists and traditional religionists among the population, and as such the attitudes of groups of the Niger Delta cannot be construed to the whole of Africa.

Another more controversial application of this approach is embodied in the concept of Negritude. Leopold Senghor, a proponent of Negritude, argued that the distinctly African approach to reality is based on emotion rather than logic, works itself out in participation rather than analysis, and manifests itself through the arts rather than the sciences. Cheikh Anta Diop and Mubabinge Bilolo, on the other hand, while agreeing that African culture is unique, challenged the view of Africans as essentially emotional and artistic, arguing that Egypt was an African culture whose achievements in science, mathematics, architecture, and philosophy were pre-eminent. This philosophy may also be maligned as overly reductionist due to the obvious scientific and scholarly triumphs of not only ancient Egypt, but also Nubia, Meroe, as well as the great library of Timbuktu, the extensive trade networks and kingdoms of North Africa, West Africa, Central Africa, the Horn of Africa and Great Zimbabwe and the other major empires of Southern, Southeast and Central Africa.

Critics of this approach argue that the actual philosophical work in producing a coherent philosophical position is being done by the academic philosopher (such as Algoa), and that the sayings of the same culture can be selected from and organised in many different ways in order to produce very different, often contradictory systems of thought.

Philosophical sagacity is a sort of individualist version of ethnophilosophy, in which one records the beliefs of certain special members of a community. The premise here is that, although most societies demand some degree of conformity of belief and behaviour from their members, a certain few of those members reach a particularly high level of knowledge and understanding of their cultures' worldviews; such people are sages. In some cases, the sage goes beyond mere knowledge and understanding to reflection and questioning—these become the targets of philosophical sagacity.

Critics of this approach note that not all reflection and questioning is philosophical; besides, if African philosophy were to be defined purely in terms of philosophic sagacity, then the thoughts of the sages could not be African philosophy, for they did not record them from other sages. Also, on this view the only difference between non-African anthropology or ethnology and African philosophy seems to be the nationality of the researcher.

Critics argue further that the problem with both ethnophilosophy and philosophical sagacity is that there is surely an important distinction between philosophy and the history of ideas, although other philosophers consider the two topics to be remarkably similar.[8] The argument is that no matter how interesting the beliefs of a people such as the Akan or the Yoruba may be to the philosopher, they remain beliefs, not philosophy. To call them philosophy is to use a secondary sense of that term, such as in "my philosophy is live and let live.

Professional philosophy

Professional philosophy is usually identified as that produced by African philosophers trained in the Western philosophical tradition, that embraces a universal view of the methods and concerns of philosophy.[7] Those philosophers identified in this category often explicitly reject the assumptions of ethnophilosophy and adopt a universalist worldview of philosophy that requires all philosophy to be accessible and applicable to all peoples and cultures in the world[7] This is even if the specific philosophical questions prioritized by individual national or regional philosophies may differ.[7] Some African philosophers classified in this category are Paulin Hountondji, Peter Bodunrin, Kwasi Wiredu, Tsenay Serequeberhan, Marcien Towa and Lansana Keita.[7]

Nationalist and ideological philosophy

Nationalist and ideological philosophy might be considered a special case of philosophic sagacity, in which not sages but ideologues are the subjects. Alternatively, it has been considered as a subcategory of professional political philosophy. In either case, the same sort of problem arises with retaining a distinction between ideology and philosophy, and also between sets of ideas and a special way of reasoning. Examples include African socialism, Nkrumaism, Harambee and Authenticite

African ethics

Although Africa is extremely diverse, there appear to be some shared moral ideas across many ethnic groups.[9] In a number of African cultures, ethics is centered on a person's character, and saying "he has no morals" translates as something like "he has no character".[9] A person's character reflects the accumulation of her deeds and her habits of conduct; hence, it can be changed over a person's life.[9] In some African cultures, "personhood" refers to an adult human who exhibits moral virtues, and one who behaves badly is not considered a person, even if he is considered a human.[9]

While many traditional African societies are highly religious, their religions are not revealed, and hence, ethics does not center around divine commands.[9] Instead, ethics is humanistic and utilitarian: it focuses on improving social functioning and human flourishing.[9] On the other hand, social welfare is not a mere aggregate of individual welfare; rather, there is a collective "social good" embodying values that everyone wants, like peace and stability.[9] In general, African ethics is social or collectivistic rather than individualistic and united in ideology.[9] Cooperation and altruism are considered crucial.[9] African ethics places more weight on duties of prosocial behaviour than on rights per se, in contrast to most of Western ethics.[9]

Africana philosophy

Africana philosophy is the work of philosophers of African descent and others whose work deals with the subject matter of the African diaspora.

Africana philosophy includes the philosophical ideas, arguments and theories of particular concern to people of African descent. Some of the topics explored by Africana philosophy include: pre-Socratic African philosophy and modern day debates discussing the early history of Western philosophy, post-colonial writing in Africa and the Americas, black resistance to oppression, black existentialism in the United States, and the meaning of "blackness" in the modern world.

List of African philosophers

This is a list of notable philosophers who theorize in the African tradition, as well as philosophers from the continent of Africa.

South African

See also

  • African philosophers

Notes and references

  1. ^ Mucale, Ergimino Pedro (Fall 2015). "The Libertarian Paradigm in Ngoenha: A Contribution to the African Philosophy". Philosophia Africana. 17: 45–54.
  2. ^ BBC (2010-01-13), Neglected African History - Lost Kingdoms of Africa Nubia - BBC4 Highlight, retrieved 2019-03-13
  3. ^ Etieyibo, Edwin; Chimakonam, Jonathan (Fall 2015). "African Philosophy: Past, Present, and Future". Philosophia Africana.
  4. ^ Ware, Rudolph T., The Walking Qurʼan: Islamic Education, Embodied Knowledge, and History in West Africa, UNC Press Books (2014), p. 101, ISBN 9781469614311 [1]
  5. ^ Murphy, David, Sembene: Imagining Alternatives in Film & Fiction. James Currey Publishers (200), p. 63, ISBN 978-0-85255-555-2
  6. ^ Sumner, Claude (1994). Ethiopian Philosophy.
  7. ^ a b c d e Samuel Oluoch Imbo, An Introduction to African Philosophy (1998), pp. 38-39,
  8. ^ "OVERVIEW AFRICAN PHILOSOPHY", p. 172, One Hundred Philosophers, Peter J. King, Zebra, 2006
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Gyekye, Kwame (9 Sep 2010). "African Ethics". The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Fall 2011 Edition. Retrieved 7 October 2014.
  10. ^ Okere, Theophilus. African Philosophy: A Historico-Hermeneutical Investigation of the Conditions of its Possibility. Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1983.

Further reading

External links

African aesthetic

While the African continent is vast and its peoples diverse, certain standards of beauty and correctness in artistic expression and physical appearance are held in common among various African societies. Taken collectively, these values and standards have been characterised as comprising a generally accepted African aesthetic.

Africana philosophy

Africana philosophy is the work of philosophers of African descent and others whose work deals with the subject matter of the African diaspora.Africana philosophy includes the philosophical ideas, arguments and theories of particular concern to people of African descent. Some of the topics explored by Africana philosophy include pre-Socratic African philosophy and modern-day debates discussing the early history of Western philosophy, post-colonial writing in Africa and the Americas, black resistance to oppression, black existentialism in the United States, and the meaning of "blackness" in the modern world.Lucius Outlaw writes:

"Africana philosophy" is very much a heuristic notion—that is, one that suggests orientations for philosophical endeavors by professional philosophers and other intellectuals devoted to matters pertinent to African and African-descended persons and peoples.

Professional philosophers in the areas of ethics, social philosophy, political philosophy, philosophy of biology, semantics, critical race theory, and postcolonialism are currently exploring Africana philosophy. The American Philosophical Association has 10,000 members in North America. It is estimated that only 100 of its members in North America are of African descent.Lewis Gordon writes:

Africana philosophy is a species of Africana thought, which involves the theoretical questions raised by critical engagements with ideas in Africana cultures and their hybrid, mixed, or creolized forms worldwide. Since there was no reason for the people of the African continent to have considered themselves African until that identity was imposed upon them through conquest and colonization in the modern era... this area of thought also refers to the unique set of questions raised by the emergence of "Africans" and their diaspora here designated by the term "Africana"... Africana philosophy refers to the philosophical dimensions of this area of thought.

Claude Sumner

Father Claude Sumner, SJ was a Canadian professor of philosophy who worked at Addis Ababa University from 1953. He was best known for his work on Ethiopian philosophy, and in particular for introducing the philosophers Zera Yacob and Walda Heywat to the English-speaking world.

Sumner died on June 24, 2012, in Montreal, Canada, at the age of 92.

Emmanuel Chukwudi Eze

Emmanuel Chukwudi Eze (18 January 1963 – 30 December 2007) was a Nigerian-born American philosopher. Eze was a specialist in postcolonial philosophy. He wrote as well as edited influential postcolonial histories of philosophy in Africa, Europe, and the Americas. Influences in his own work include Paulin Hountondji, Richard Rorty, David Hume, and Immanuel Kant.

Eze was most recently Associate Professor of Philosophy at DePaul University, where he also edited the journal Philosophia Africana [1]. He died on December 30, 2007 in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania after a short illness.

Ethiopian philosophy

Ethiopian philosophy is the philosophical corpus of the territories of present-day Ethiopia and Eritrea. Besides via oral tradition, it was preserved early in written form through Ge'ez manuscripts. This philosophy occupies a unique position within African philosophy.


Ethnophilosophy is the study of indigenous philosophical systems. The implicit concept is that a specific culture can have a philosophy that is not applicable and accessible to all peoples and cultures in the world; however, this concept is disputed by traditional philosophers. An example of ethnophilosophy is African philosophy.


Harambee is a Kenyan tradition of community self-help events, e.g. fundraising or development activities. Harambee literally means "all pull together" in Swahili, and is also the official motto of Kenya and appears on its coat of arms.

Harambee events may range from informal affairs lasting a few hours, in which invitations are spread by word of mouth, to formal, multi-day events advertised in newspapers. These events have long been important in parts of East Africa, as ways to build and maintain communities.

Henry Odera Oruka

Henry Odera Oruka (1 June 1944, Nyanza Province – 9 December 1995, Nairobi) was a Kenyan philosopher who is best known for "Sage Philosophy". It was a project started in the 1970s in an attempt to preserve the knowledge of the indigenous thinkers in traditional African communities.

John Olubi Sodipo

John Olubi Sodipo (October 15, 1935–December 4, 1999), was a Nigerian philosopher.

Educated at Remo Secondary School, Sagamu, 1948–53, the University of Ibadan, 1956–1960, and at the Durham University, England, 1961–1964,

Sodipo lectured in philosophy at the University of Lagos from 1966,

and taught at the Obafemi Awolowo University from 1968 to 1982, where he became the first professor in African philosophy and served as First Head of Department of Philosophy.

He became the first Vice Chancellor for the Ogun State University when it opened in 1982.

Sodipo was editor of Second Order: An African Journal of Philosophy.

Journal on African Philosophy

The Journal on African Philosophy is an electronic journal sponsored by the International Society for African Philosophy and Studies and published by Africa Resource Center.


Kwanzaa () is a celebration held in the United States and in other nations of the African diaspora in the Americas and lasts a week. The celebration honors African heritage in African-American culture and is observed from December 26 to January 1, culminating in a feast and gift-giving. Kwanzaa has seven core principles (Nguzo Saba). It was created by Maulana Karenga and was first celebrated in 1966–67.

Kwasi Wiredu

Kwasi Wiredu (born 3 October 1931) is an African philosopher.


Négritude is a framework of critique and literary theory, developed mainly by francophone intellectuals, writers, and politicians of the African diaspora during the 1930s, aimed at raising and cultivating "Black consciousness" across Africa and its diaspora. Négritude was founded by Martinican poet Aimé Césaire, Léopold Sédar Senghor (the first President of Senegal), and Léon Damas of French Guiana. Négritude intellectuals disavowed colonialism, and argued for the importance of a Pan-African sense of being among people of African descent worldwide. The intellectuals employed Marxist political philosophy, in the Black radical tradition. The writers drew heavily on a surrealist literary style, and some say they were also influenced somewhat by the Surrealist stylistics, and in their work often explored the experience of diasporic being, asserting ones' self and identity, and ideas of home, home-going and belonging. Césaire's novel 'Notebook of a Return to My Native Land' is perhaps the most notable of Négritudist work.

Négritude inspired the birth of many movements across the Afro-Diasporic world, including Afro-Surrealism, Creolite in the Caribbean, and Black is beautiful in the United States. Frantz Fanon often made reference to Négritude in his writing.

Ori (Yoruba)

Ori (known as Orí in Latin America) is an Orisha metaphysical concept.

Ori, literally meaning "head," refers to one's spiritual intuition and destiny. It is the reflective spark of human consciousness embedded into the human essence, and therefore is often personified as an Orisha in its own right. It is believed that human beings are able to heal themselves both spiritually and physically by working with the Orishas to achieve a balanced character, or iwa-pele. When one has a balanced character, one obtains an alignment with one's Ori or divine self.

It is also believed that Ori be worshiped like Orisha. When things are not going right, Ori should be consulted. And to make things right Ori should be appeased. This is because whatever one becomes or whatever happens in one's life is as destined by Ori.


Pan-Africanism is a worldwide movement that aims to encourage and strengthen bonds of solidarity between all indigenous and diasporan ethnic groups of sub-Saharan African descent. Based on a common fate going back to the Atlantic slave trade, the movement extends beyond continental Africans with a substantial support base among the African diaspora in the Caribbean, Latin America, the United States and Canada[1]. It is based on the belief that unity is vital to economic, social, and political progress and aims to "unify and uplift" people of sub-Saharan African descent. The ideology asserts that the fate of all sub-Saharan African people and countries are intertwined. At its core Pan-Africanism is a belief that “Sub-Saharan African people, both on the continent and in the diaspora; share not merely a common history, but a common destiny".The Organization of African Unity (now the African Union) was established in 1963 to safeguard the sovereignty and territorial integrity of its Member States and to promote global relations within the framework of the United Nations. The African Union Commission has its seat in Addis Ababa and the Pan-African Parliament has its seat in Johannesburg and Midrand.

Paulin J. Hountondji

Paulin Hountondji (born 11 April 1942 in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire) is a Beninese philosopher, politician and academic. Since the 1970s he has taught at the Université Nationale du Bénin in Cotonou, where he is Professor of Philosophy. In the early 1990s he briefly served as Minister of Education and Minister for Culture and Communications in the Government of Benin.


Philosophy (from Greek φιλοσοφία, philosophia, literally "love of wisdom") is the study of general and fundamental questions about existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. Such questions are often posed as problems to be studied or resolved. The term was probably coined by Pythagoras (c. 570 – 495 BCE). Philosophical methods include questioning, critical discussion, rational argument, and systematic presentation. Classic philosophical questions include: Is it possible to know anything and to prove it? What is most real? Philosophers also pose more practical and concrete questions such as: Is there a best way to live? Is it better to be just or unjust (if one can get away with it)? Do humans have free will?Historically, "philosophy" encompassed any body of knowledge. From the time of Ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle to the 19th century, "natural philosophy" encompassed astronomy, medicine, and physics. For example, Newton's 1687 Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy later became classified as a book of physics. In the 19th century, the growth of modern research universities led academic philosophy and other disciplines to professionalize and specialize. In the modern era, some investigations that were traditionally part of philosophy became separate academic disciplines, including psychology, sociology, linguistics, and economics.

Other investigations closely related to art, science, politics, or other pursuits remained part of philosophy. For example, is beauty objective or subjective? Are there many scientific methods or just one? Is political utopia a hopeful dream or hopeless fantasy? Major sub-fields of academic philosophy include metaphysics ("concerned with the fundamental nature of reality and being"), epistemology (about the "nature and grounds of knowledge [and]...its limits and validity"), ethics, aesthetics, political philosophy, logic and philosophy of science.

Ubuntu philosophy

Ubuntu (Zulu pronunciation: [ùɓúntʼù]) is a Nguni Bantu term meaning "humanity". It is often translated as "I am because we are," or "humanity towards others", but is often used in a more philosophical sense to mean "the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity".In Southern Africa, it has come to be used as a term for a kind of humanist philosophy, ethic, or ideology, also known as Ubuntuism propagated in the Africanisation (transition to majority rule) process of these countries during the 1980s and 1990s.

Since the transition to democracy in South Africa with the Nelson Mandela presidency in 1994, the term has become more widely known outside of Southern Africa, notably popularised to English-language readers through the ubuntu theology of Desmond Tutu. Tutu was the chairman of the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), and many have argued that ubuntu was a formative influence on the TRC.


Ujamaa ('familyhood' in Swahili) was the concept that formed the basis of Julius Nyerere's social and economic development policies in Tanzania after it gained independence from Britain in 1961.

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