Decolonization of Knowledge Production for Africa’s Transformation and Development
Sub-theme: African Philosophy and Theorizing Africa
The calls for the decolonisation of Knowledge production is one that is increasingly being heard in discussions that focus on curriculum content transformation on the African continent. This resounds with the realisation that development outcomes are championed at the level of the knowledge production process and that failing to significantly contribute at the level of the knowledge generation process is tantamount to forfeiting the possibility of influencing the outcomes. Whereas educational systems all across the continent are still mostly based upon the colonial models, there are also too few Africans making inputs at the level of theorisation that eventually informs developmental models and outcomes. Of the few who contribute at the knowledge generation level, their inputs are often mediated by the predominantly western models and paradigms consistent with the centres of knowledge in the northern hemisphere were some of the leading African thinkers are trained. This creates a vacuum for the generation of decolonized Afrocentric knowledge production which can probably best be championed at the level of African knowledge centres and institutions of higher learning. The call for decolonisation is the ultimate call for freedom. Without the decolonisation of knowledge, Africans may feel their liberation is inchoate and their efforts to shed Western dominance all come to naught. Over the years’ various African leaders including Steve Biko wrote about the need to decolonise knowledge. The call for decolonisation is largely being equated with the search for an African identity that looks critically at Western hegemony. Biko sought the black people to understand their origins; to understand black history and affirm black identity. These are all embedded in the struggle to decolonise and search for African values and identities. The contributors to this panel should submit papers that define what Africa and the African diaspora, their strategic partners and scholars in African Studies require for a society devoid of colonialism and ready for a renewed Africa. Papers could focus on what needs to be done to revisit and update our understanding around the philosophies and discussions on Pan Africanism and decolonisation. Submissions could also focus on the relevance and significance of notions like the African renaissance and the role that needs to be played by various actors including African governments, churches, universities, schools, cultural organisations, development partners and other stakeholders in ensuring the production of decolonized Afrocentric knowledge that would advance the continent’s development and position it as a key global player into the future. Please email your paper title, abstract (250 words), current affiliation and contact info to Gabila Nubong (North West University, South Africa) at [email protected] and Akosua Adomako Ampofo (University of Ghana) at [email protected] as soon as possible.