Advertisement

The Debate on Ethnophilosophy Between Hountondji and His Contemporary Critics

  • Franziska DübgenEmail author
  • Stefan Skupien
Chapter
Part of the Global Political Thinkers book series (GPT)

Abstract

Hountondji’s contemporaries reacted to his critique of ethnophilosophy and his vision of how African philosophy should be properly done and fostered a vibrant discussion on the methods, scope, and standing of philosophy in the African context. The chapter resumes the main elements of this debate, including the topic of who philosophises (the individual or a collective), of the question of orality versus textuality of philosophical praxis, the nature of science, and the role of popular knowledge in academia. The chapter concludes by considering the ambivalent character of ethnophilosophy in the time of its emergence and in contemporary scholarship.

Keywords

African philosophy Ethnophilosophy Collective reasoning Orality Popular knowledge 

References

  1. [AP]: Hountondji, P. J. (1996). African Philosophy: Myth and Reality (2nd ed.). Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.Google Scholar
  2. [SfM]: Hountondji, P. J. (2002). The Struggle for Meaning: Reflections on Philosophy, Culture and Democracy in Africa. Athens, OH: Ohio University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Apter, A. (1992). ‘Que Faire?’ Reconsidering Inventions of Africa. Critical Inquiry, 19(1), 87–104.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bodunrin, P. (1981). The Question of African Philosophy. Philosophy, 56(216), 161–179.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Diagne, S. B. (2016). The Ink of the Scholar. Dakar: Codesria.Google Scholar
  6. Eboussi-Boulaga, F. (1968). La Bantou problématique. Présence Africaine, 66, 4–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Griaule, M. (1965). Conversations with Ogotemmeli: An Introduction to Dogon Religious Ideas. London: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  8. Gyekye, K. (1987). An Essay on African Philosophical Thought: The Akan Conceptual Scheme. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.Google Scholar
  9. Hountondji, P. J. (1980). Sur la ’philosophie africaine’. Critique de l’ethnophilosophie. Yaoundé: Edition CLE.Google Scholar
  10. Hountondji, P. J. (1989). Occidentalism, Elitism: Answers to Two Critiques. Quest: Philosophical Discussions, 3(2), 3–30.Google Scholar
  11. Hountondji, P. J. (1990). Scientific Dependence in Africa Today. Research in African Literatures, 21(3), 5–15.Google Scholar
  12. Hountondji, P. J. (1994). Les savoirs endogènes. Pistes pour une recherche. Dakar: Codresia.Google Scholar
  13. Hountondji, P. J. (1996). African Philosophy: Myth and Reality (2nd ed.). Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.Google Scholar
  14. Ikuenobe, P. (1997). The Parochial Universalist Conception of ‘Philosophy’ and ‘African Philosophy’. Philosophy East and West, 47(2), 189–210.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Janz, B. (2010). The Folds in Paulin Hountondji’s ‘African Philosophy. Myth and Reality’. Philosophical Papers, 39(1), 117–134.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Kasandra, A. (2018). Contemporary African Social and Political Philosophy: Trends, Debates and Challenges. London and New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  17. Keita, L. (1981). The Debate Continues: A Reply to Olabiyi Yai’s ‘Misère de la philosophie spéculative’. Présence Africaine, 120, 35–45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Koffi, N. (1980 [1976]). L’impensé de Towa et de Hountondji. In C. Summer (Ed.), African Philosophy. La philosophy africaine (pp. 165–188). Addis-Ababa: Chamber Printing House.Google Scholar
  19. Mangena, F. (2014). In Defense of Ethno-Philosophy: A Brief Response to Kanu’s Eclecticism. Filosofia Theoretica: Journal of African Philosophy, Culture and Religions, 3(1), 96–107.Google Scholar
  20. Mudimbe, V. Y. (1985). African Gnosis Philosophy and the Order of Knowledge: An Introduction. African Studies Review, 28(2–3), 149–233.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Mudimbe, V. E. (1988). The Invention of Africa: Gnosis, Philosophy, and the Order of Knowledge. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.Google Scholar
  22. Nkulu-N’Sengha, M. (2017). Bantu Philosophy. Available at: https://www.britannica.com/topic/Bantu-philosophy. Published June 23, 2017. Accessed 14 August 2018.
  23. Oruka, H. O. (1990). Sage Philosophy: Indigenous Thinkers and Modern Debate on African Philosophy. Amsterdam: Brill.Google Scholar
  24. Owomoyela, O. (1987). Africa and the Imperative of Philosophy: A Skeptical Consideration. African Studies Review, 30(1), 79–100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Sesanti, S. (2016). Africanising the Philosophy Curriculum Through Teaching African Culture Modules: An African Renaissance Act. South African Journal of Philosophy, 35(4), 429–443.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Towa, M. (1971). Essai sur la problématique dans l’Afrique actuelle. Yaoundé: Edition CLE.Google Scholar
  27. Yai, O. B. (1977). Theory and Practice in African Philosophy: The Poverty of Speculative Philosophy. Second Order, 6(2), 3–20.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of MünsterMünsterGermany
  2. 2.WZB Berlin Social Science CenterBerlinGermany

Personalised recommendations