Advertisement

Reclaiming “Development” Through Indigenity and Indigenous Knowledge

  • George J Sefa Dei
Chapter
Part of the Explorations of Educational Purpose book series (EXEP, volume 9)

Abstract

This chapter focuses on the possibilities of “Indigenous knowledge” from an anti-colonial stance in the pursuit of “African development”. The learning objective is to utilize a Ghanaian case study of how local cultural knowledge can be helpful in countering imposed or dominant notions of “development” and “social progress”. The chapter considers how Indigenous systems of knowledge are relevant for the promotion of genuine, African-centred development, one that responds to the needs, concerns, and aspirations of peoples of African descent. In fact, we need a critical theoretical lens to imagine and construct viable development options for Africa. By broaching Indigenous and local cultural knowledges and their relevance for African development, local ways of knowing are crucial and relevant to implementing effective social change.

Keywords

Development African development Indigeneity Indigenous knowledge Ghana Case study Social progress African-centred development Critical theory Effective social change 

References

  1. Abrahams, R. (1967) On Proverb Collecting and Proverb Collection. Proverbium, 8, 181–184.Google Scholar
  2. Abrahams, R. (1968a) A Rhetoric of Everyday Life: Traditional Conversational Genres. Southern Folklore Quarterly, 32, 44–59.Google Scholar
  3. Abrahams, R. (1968b) Introductory Remarks in a Rhetorical Theory of Folklore. Journal of American Folklore, 81, 143–158.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Abrahams, R. (1972) Proverbs and Proverbial Expression. In Dorson, R. (Ed.) Folklore and Folklife (pp. 117–127). Chicago: Chicago University Press.Google Scholar
  5. Abubakre, R. D. and Reichmuth, S. (1997) Arabic Writing Between Global and Local Culture: Scholars and Poets in Yorubaland. Research in African Literatures, 28(3), 183–209.Google Scholar
  6. Achebe, C. (1996) Things Fall Apart. Oxford; Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann Educational.Google Scholar
  7. Agrawal, A. (1995) Dismantling the Divide Between Indigenous and Scientific Knowledge. Development and Change, 26, 413–439.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Armah, A. K. (1969) The Beautiful Ones Are Not Yet Born. New York: Collier Books.Google Scholar
  9. Bascom, W. (1965) The Forms of Folklore: Prose Narratives. Journal of American Folklore, 78(307), 3–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Battiste, M. A. and Henderson, J. Y. (Eds) (2000) Protecting Indigenous Knowledge and Heritage: A Global Challenge. Saskatoon: Purich.Google Scholar
  11. Boateng, F. (1990) African Traditional Education: A Tool for Intergenerational Communication. In Asante, M. K. and Asante, K. W. (Eds.) African Culture: The Rhythms of Unity (pp. 109–122). Trenton: African World Press.Google Scholar
  12. Castellano, M. B. (2000) Updating Aboriginal Traditions of Knowledge. In Dei, G. J. S., Hall Budd L, and D. Goldin Rosenberg, B. (Eds.) Indigenous Knowledges in Global Contexts: MulTiple Readings of Our World (pp. 21–36). Toronto: University of Toronto Press.Google Scholar
  13. Chamberlain, T. (2003) If This is Your Land, Where Are Yoru Stories?: Finding Common Ground. Toronto: Alfred A. Knopf Canada.Google Scholar
  14. Christie, M. (2006) Transdisciplinary Research and Aboriginal Knowledge. The Australian Journal of Indigenous Education, 35, 78–89.Google Scholar
  15. De Certeau, M. (1984) The Practice of Everyday Life. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  16. De Graft-Johnson, K. E. (1977). “Fictive Thinking and Social Development”. Unpublished paper, Department of Sociology, University of Ghana, Legon.Google Scholar
  17. Dei, G. J. S. (1996) Anti-Racism Education: Theory and Practice. Halifax, Nova Scotia: Fernwood Publishing.Google Scholar
  18. Dei, G. J. S. (2000) Rethinking the Role of Indigenous Knowledges in the Academy. International Journal of Inclusive Education, 4(2), 111–132.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Dorson, R. (Ed.) (1972) Folklore and Folklife. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  20. Eastman, C. A. and Nerburn, K. (Eds.) (1993) The Soul of an Indian and Other Writings from Ohiyesa (The Classic Wisdom Collection). New York: New World Library.Google Scholar
  21. Firth, R. (1926) Proverbs in the Native Life with Particular Reference to Those of the Maori. Folklore, 32.Google Scholar
  22. Hill Jr., Norbert S. (Ed.) (1999) Words of Power: Voices from Indian America. New York: Fulcrum Publishing.Google Scholar
  23. Holmes, L. (1996) Elders’ Knowledge and the ancestry of experience in Hawaii. (Unpublished Ph.D thesis at the University of Toronto/OISE, Department of Sociology and Equity Studies).Google Scholar
  24. Johnson, B. (1993) Ojibway Tales. Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press.Google Scholar
  25. Johnson, B. (2003) Ojibway Heritage. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart.Google Scholar
  26. Kalu, O. U. (1991) Gender Ideology in Igbo Religion: The Changing Religious Role of Women in Igboland. Africa/Istituto Italo-Africano,, 46(2), 184–202.Google Scholar
  27. Kudadjie, J. N. (1996). Ga and Dangme Proverbs: For Preaching and Teaching. Accra: Asempa Publishers. Retrieved on March 29, 2009. http://www.crvp.org/book/Series02/II-5/chapter_iii.htm
  28. Ogede, O. S. (1993) The Role of the Igede Poet Micah Ichegbeh’s “Adiyah” Songs in the Political and Moral Education of his Local Audiences. African Languages and Cultures, 6(1), 49–68.Google Scholar
  29. Opoku, K. A. (1975) Speak to the Winds: Proverbs from Africa. New York: Northrop: Lee & Shepard Co.Google Scholar
  30. Opoku, K. A. (1997) Hearing and Keeping: Akan Proverbs. Accra: Asempa Publishers.Google Scholar
  31. Pachocinshi, R. (1996). Proverbs of Africa: Human Nature in the Nigerian Oral Tradition: An Exposition and Analysis of 2,600 Proverbs from 64 Peoples’. Continuum International Publishing. Online: http://www.paragonhouse.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=23_46&products_id=155 http://www.paragonhouse.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=23_46&products_id=155
  32. Stiffarm, L. A. (Ed.) (1998) As We See … Aboriginal Pedagogy. Saskatoon: University Extension Press. Saskatoon: University of Saskatchewan.Google Scholar
  33. Taylor, A. (1934) Problems in the Study of Proverbs. Journal of American Folklore, 47, 1–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Wolfgang, M. and Dundas, A. (1981) The Wisdom of Many: Essays on the Proverb. New York: Garland Publishing.Google Scholar
  35. wa Thiong’o, N. (1965) The River Between. London: Heinemann.Google Scholar
  36. wa Thiong’o, N. (1986) Decolonizing the Mind: The Politics of Language in African Literature. London: James Currey.Google Scholar
  37. Yankah, K. (1989) The Proverb in the Content of Akan Rhetoric: A Theory Proverb Praxis. Bern, Frankfurt au Main: Peter Lang.Google Scholar
  38. Yankah, K. (1995) Speaking for the Chief: Okyeame and the Politics of Akan Oratory. Bloomington & Indianapolis: Indiana University Press.Google Scholar
  39. Younging, G. (2007). Traditional Knowledge in the International Framework. Paper presented at the Annual conference on: Indigenous Knowledge and Indigenous Science. Australia Indigenous Studies Association, Sydney, Australia, July 11–14, 2007.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Toronto, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE)TorontoCanada

Personalised recommendations