The Classical African Concept of Maat and Human Communication

  • Molefi Kete Asante


I arrive at this task of writing a chapter for Kehbuma Langmia’s project completely dumbfounded by the turn of events in the history of both African and American communication and the nature and level of discourse about what passes for news, for instance, and what is fake news. There is a crisis in the field of communication but it is brought on by a moral crisis deeply rooted in much of the Western world’s devotion to an ideology of domination (Schiller, Communication and Cultural Domination. New York: Taylor and Francis, 1975). I am convinced that the communication crisis in the West, begun in the United States with an imposition of cultural power, will continue to have serious implications for the African world. The reverberations will be at several levels such as ontological, axiological, ethical, and existential in the field of communication. What will be necessary is a return or a re-memory of the nature of African communication within the context of tradition, community, and values. This is why I am proposing a Maatic theory of communication grounded in the ancient classical African idea of ethics (Karenga, Maat: The Moral Ideal in Ancient Egypt. New York: Routledge, 2003; Asante, The African Pyramids of Knowledge. New York: Universal Write, 2016).


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Molefi Kete Asante
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Africology and African American StudiesTemple UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA

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