This book is a philosophical inquiry into indigenous African legal ethics, asking what is African about African legal ethics? Taking us beyond a geographical understanding of Africa, the author argues for an African legal ethics that is distinct from non-African African legal ethics which are rooted in Euro-Western constructions. De-silencing African voices on African legal ethics this book decolonizes the prevailing wisdom on legal ethics and broadens our understanding of how law in Africa bears on ethics in Africa or, conversely, (...) on how ethics bears on law in Africa. This book will be of interest to scholars of African philosophy, philosophy of law, and legal ethics. (shrink)
This is an introductory book on African legal philosophy. The book claims that African legal philosophy exists and is intelligible in the context of African culture, just as every other legal philosophy has its cultural foundation. What law is, how it is thought, how it is interpreted, and how it is applied takes place with thing the parameters of African culture. At a time when the imposition of Western culture on Africans has to be reckoned with, African legal philosophy is, (...) in part, a response to this imposition. It ought to have a liberating effect. (shrink)
The history of the human world has reached a stage where no philosophical community can any longer philosophize in isolation from other philosophical communities. The African philosophical community is not an exception and neither is any other philosophical community. There is a widespread notion in the West that philosophy originated in Greece and found its way throughout Europe, from where it migrated to Africa. This book argues that Philosophy did not migrate to African from anywhere but that it is radically (...) native to all communities. The chapters cover the erasure of African philosophy, African philosophical departures, the threat that Christianity has posed to African philosophy, African legal philosophy, African musical aesthetics and connections with classical philosophy. Arguing that the landscape of philosophy has a place not only for Africans but also for all human beings and that African philosophers are among the architects of this landscape, this book is an important read for scholars and students of African philosophy. (shrink)
Contains studies that investigate the manner in which historical colonializing projects rested upon globalizing meta-narratives: theodicies and economic justifications. This title also includes case studies of specific interfacing sites: Singapore, South Africa, and Micronesia.
The thesis of incommensurability concerns the interrelation between subjective culture and objective culture through which the constitutive agency of chaos (incommensurability) emerges. The objectivations/products, the constituents of objective culture, carry their own Being, and this Being transcends the original subjective expressivities/intentions. The constitutive agency of this incommensurable interrelation becomes apparent in an age of globalization where its effects become global, bringing about dangerous socio-political volatilities. To illustrate, global warming has been neither the expressive intention of subjective culture nor a constituent (...) of energy per se as an objectivated product in the context of objective culture. It emerges in the interrelation, an unforeseen incommensurability, a chaos in the culture of energy that threatens the globe/world in various ways. Incommensurability, the cultural form of chaos, is recognized as dramatically foiling human instrumental rationality, spoiling its hubris or belief in its own progress. The doctrine of incommensurability shows that we can not know what we are doing while we are doing it, for the empirical manifestations of chaos are only knowable after the fact and its effects are unpredictable. This book of essays is divided into two parts: the first dealing with contemporary themes in subjective culture and the second with those in objective culture. A few of the pressing topics treated in this volume are: abstracted information of a computer-based society versus locally-based, grounded knowledge, abstracted neo-liberal economics versus place-grounded economics, the geo-politics of peak oil, and the intensification of natural disasters as a consequence of global warming reveal the tenuous character of the contemporary world. (shrink)
How do you connect the discipline of anthropology to both philosophy and geography? What about history, sociology, and other applied and theoretical forms of knowledge? In Earth Ways: Framing Geographical Meanings, Gary Backhaus and John Murungi challenge contributors to find the organizing component, or "framings," that enables them to bridge their own work to philosophy and geography. What emerges are truly creative contributions to interdisciplinary thought.
The contributors to this volume address global, regional, and local landscapes, cosmopolitan and indigenous cultures, and human and more-than-human ecology as they work to reveal place-specific tensional dynamics. This unusual book, which covers a wide-ranging array of topics, coheres into a work that will be a valuable reference for scholars of geography and the philosophy of place.
The study of landscape and place has become an increasingly fertile realm of inquiry in the humanities and social sciences. In this new book of essays, selected from presentations at the first annual meeting of the Society for Philosophy and Geography, scholars investigate the experiences and meanings that inscribe urban and suburban landscapes. Gary Backhaus and John Murungi bring philosophy and geography into a dialogue with a host of other disciplines to explore a fundamental dialectic: while our collective and personal (...) activity modifies the landscape, in turn, the landscape modifies human identities, and social and environmental relations. Whether proposing a peripatetic politics, conducting a sociological analysis of building security systems, or critically examining the formation of New York City's municipal parks, each essay sheds distinctive light on this fascinating and engaging aspect of contemporary environmental studies. (shrink)
African Philosophical Adventures calls for a recognition and affirmation of African philosophy as an adventure. This understanding fosters and cultivates inquisitive open-mindedness and is animated by wonder.
The illumination of African philosophy offered in this volume leads to the illumination of philosophy in general. Illuminating arises as an essential task of philosophy, whether African or not. What is illuminated is not already there, but is constituted at the moment of illumination. This book invites the reader to participate in the illuminating work of philosophy and necessarily, thereby, to contribute to his or her own self-constituting self-illumination. Although the focus is on African philosophy, the book also bridges the (...) gap between African philosophy and other branches. Today more than ever, a bridging philosophy is called for, and this book helps to meet that need. This book poses philosophical questions such as who is an African and what Africa is, and seeks philosophical answers. In doing so, it contributes to the ongoing discourse on African philosophy. It addresses such issues as the African grounding of philosophy, the difference between African and Black philosophy, the African body, African art as expressed in and by Chiwara, the plight of African trees as the plight of Africans, and the symbolic meaning of Robben Island. (shrink)
A Japanese rock garden is open to visitors, speaking to each in a language he or she can understand. As such, it is a site of languages—that is, a site that is open to the languages of each and every visitor. Thus, it is also a site that may be said to speak the language of each and every visitor. To speak to each visitor in his or her own language, it also may be said to carry the potential to (...) speak any of these languages. As such, it is a place of memory. It is also a place pregnant with unborn languages. It, in itself, serves as its own midwife, giving birth to any of these languages. To visit a Japanese rock garden is to bring this possibility to fruition. To be visited is to visit the visitor. It cannot be visited without it visiting the visitor. The visitor already harbors the possibility of being visited by it, a possibility that is born during the visit. What I discuss in this paper is the possibilities associated with a phenomenological visit to a Japanese rock garden. Here, at this garden, phenomenology is conceived, midwifed, and birthed. It is also preserved here. A phenomenological visitor to such a place finds himself or herself already ahead of himself or herself, yet, at the same time, not ahead of himself or herself. Therefore, this chapter constitutes a discussion of the paradoxical nature of such a visit and the paradoxical nature of the garden, itself. One discovers that, in visiting, one is visited. Moreover, the garden turns out to be one of self-discovery. What is gardened in this garden is the gardening of self, a self that is at home in not being at home, a paradoxical mode of being. (shrink)
This book explores the lived experience of being at home as well as being homeless. Being at home or not is typically a matter of being at a place or not, where such a place is carved out of space and designated as such. It is a place that is both empirical and trans-empirical. When one is at home or not at home, one typically has in mind an inhabited place. To inhabit or not to inhabit it is to find (...) oneself in a place that has an affective presence or absence. In either case, affectivity points to a lived place where lived experience is constituted and displayed. Thus, in this context, affectivity becomes more than the subject of empirical psychology. If psychology were to have access, it would be in the context of phenomenological or existential psychology – a psychology that has its roots in the sensible world and, hence, a psychology that expresses an aesthetic dimension. Each of the contributors in this book extends an invitation to the readers to participate in constituting, extending, and sharing with others the sense of either being at home or of being homeless. This book appeals to students, researchers as well as general interest readers. (shrink)
The world of aesthetics is, itself, inextricable from the world as a whole. Indeed, as this book argues, it is among its essential features, and an invaluable key to its appreciation. Thus, to venture into the uncharted world of aesthetics is also to venture into this larger world, a world that might be called the "cosmos" or the "universe". At the same time, to venture into this uncharted realm is to also blaze a trail to the self. This trail would, (...) itself, be paradoxical, as it would end where it begins and begins where it ends. In this light, it may also be said that the uncharted world of aesthetics is the uncharted world of the self. This book provides insights into how works about aesthetics are also works reflective of the self, as well as works with endless possibilities of being. (shrink)
This volume presents the concept of Ecoscape as spatial interrelations, or spatially patterned processes, that are constitutive of an environment_an ecosystem. Contributors investigate environmental issues concerning the human impact on geohistory, food distribution, genetically modified biota, waste management, scientific mapping, and the rethinking of human identity.