Between Rhetoric and Reality
330 Pages
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Between Rhetoric and Reality


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330 Pages


Since time immemorial, indigenous peoples around the world have developed knowledge systems to ensure their continued survival in their respective territories. These knowledge systems have always been dynamic such that they could meet new challenges. Yet, since the so-called enlightenment period, these knowledges have been supplanted by the Western enlightenment science or colonial science hegemony and arrogance such that in many cases they were relegated to the periphery. Some Euro-centric scholars even viewed indigenous knowledge as superstitious, irrational and anti-development. This erroneous view has, since the colonial period, spread like veld fire to the extent of being internalised by some political elites and Euro-centric academics of Africa and elsewhere. However, for some time now, the potential role that indigenous peoples and their knowledge can play in addressing some of the global problems haunting humanity across the world is increasingly emerging as part of international discourse. This book presents an interesting and insightful discourse on the state and role that indigenous knowledge can play in addressing a tapestry of problems of the world and the challenges connected with the application of indigenous knowledge in enlightenment science-dominated contexts. The book is not only useful to academics and students in the fields of indigenous studies and anthropology, but also those in other fields such as environmental science, social and political ecology, development studies, policy studies, economic history, and African studies.



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Published 03 April 2015
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EAN13 9789956792832
Language English
Document size 3 MB

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Edited by Munyaradzi Mawere & Samuel Awuah-Nyamekye
Between Rhetoric and Reality: The State and Use of Indigenous Knowledge in Post-Colonial AfricaEdited by Munyaradzi Mawere & Samuel Awuah-Nyamekye Langaa Research & Publishing CIG Mankon, Bamenda
Publisher: LangaaRPCIG Langaa Research & Publishing Common Initiative Group P.O. Box 902 Mankon Bamenda North West Region Cameroon Distributed in and outside N. America by African Books Collective
ISBN: 9956-792-69-1 ©Munyaradzi Mawere & Samuel Awuah-Nyamekye 2015
DISCLAIMER All views expressed in this publication are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Langaa RPCIG.
Dedication This book is dedicated to the spirit of Walter Rodney, the author of an infamous book: “How Europe underdeveloped Africa,” who was an Afrocentric scholar whose life was devoted to the total liberation and holistic development of Africa and the African people
List of ContributorsMunyaradzi Mawere holds a PhD in Social Anthropology from the University of Cape Town in South Africa. Dr Mawere also holds a Master’s Degree in Philosophy and B.A (Hons) Degree in Philosophy from the University of Zimbabwe. He is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Social Anthropology at Universidade Pedagogica-Gaza, Mozambique where he has also worked in different capacities as a Senior lecturer, Assistant Research Director, and Postgraduate Co-ordinator. Before joining this University, Dr Mawere was Philosophy lecturer at the University of Zimbabwe. He has an outstanding publishing record of more than eighty publications which include more than twenty books and over sixty book chapters and papers in internationally accredited scholarly journals. His research interests include, but not limited to, knowledge studies, environmental conservation, African studies, post-coloniality, culture and heritage studies. Samuel Awuah-Nyamekyeis a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Religion and Human Values at the University of Cape Coast in Ghana, where he also received his MPhil, BA, and Diploma of Education. Awuah-Nyamekye holds a PhD from the School of Philosophy, Religion and the History of Science of the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom. Awuah-Nyamekye also has a certificate in HIV/AIDS Counselling and Care Giving from the University of Ghana. He is a member of the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment (ASLE) and the International Society for Environmental Ethics (ISEE) Representative for Ghana. His current research interests are focussed on religion and the environment, environmental ethics, religion and development, religion and politics, and women and religion. Awuah-Nyamekye has written and published two books, and has authored several articles in internationally esteemed scholarly journals. Awuah-Nyamekye has presented papers at several international conferences.
Kwame Osei Kwartengholds a PhD in African Studies (History) from the University of Birmingham, and an M.Phil. (History), Bachelor of Arts (Hons) and Diploma in Education from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana. He is also an Associate Professor and the Head of the Department of History, University of Cape Coast. He has published 5 books, three of which were co–authored with other colleagues. Dr Kwarteng has published several articles in refereed journals. His research interests include: Ahafo, Institutional History, Environmental Studies, African Elephant, Colonial and Post–Independent History. Currently, he is working on Kwame Nkrumah and Political Opposition in Ghana from 1947 to 1957.Hezekiah Olufemi Adeosun holds a Ph.D. in Yoruba Literature from the University of Ilorin, Ilorin, Nigeria. He is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Linguistics and Nigerian Languages, University of Ilorin. Dr. Adeosun has many article publications to his credit both locally and internationally. He is the author of "Socio-semiotic Theory and Practice in Yoruba Written Poetry" and "Gender Discourse in Yoruba Written Poetry: A Socio-semiotic Analysis" published by Lambert publishers. Adeosun's research interests include Yoruba Literature, Cultural Studies and Socio-semiotics. Artwell Nhemachenaholds a Ph.D. from the University of Cape Town, South Africa. He also holds an MSc and BSc Honours Degree from the University of Zimbabwe where he lectured briefly before joining the University of Cape Town for Doctoral studies. Artwell Nhemachena is a Laureate of the Democratic Governance Institute of the Council for the Development of Social Science research in Africa (CODESRIA) in which he has been participating since 2010. His research interests include Politics and governance, environment, indigenous knowledge and science, human security and food security, anthropological jurisprudence, personhood, land issues, human rights. He has published a number of papers including in the areas of governance, knowledge/epistemology and environment.
Pius Oyeniran Abioje holds a PhD in Theology from the University of Calabar, Nigeria. He is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Religions, University of Ilorin, Nigeria. Before joining this University, Dr Abioje was lecturer at the SS Peter and Paul Catholic Major Seminary, Bodija, Ibadan. He has more than twenty journal articles; ten chapters in books, and author of a book. His research interests include, but not limited to, Afro-Christian studies.Elias Asiamacurrently at the School of Performing Arts, is University of Ghana, Legon and lectures in Theatre for Development, Popular Theatre Laboratory, Popular Theatre Workshop, Drama in African Societies to mention a few. Elias served as a Research Assistant at the School of Performing Arts, University of Ghana, Legon, from 1984- 1986. Elias holds a Diploma in Theatre Arts, Diploma in Theology, B.A. (Hons) in Drama and Religion and M.Phil. /Ph.D. in Theatre for Development from Southampton University (King Alfred’s College) in the United Kingdom. He is married to Francisca Sika-Asiama, with three children: Ernest, William and Lilian Asiama. Elias has served on International Research Organizations in various capacities including: being one of the principal investigators on Climate Change for Penn State University, Dar Es Saalam University, Tanzania etc. Elias Asiama’s main focus has over the years been the recovery of African cultural heritage for the promotion of development on the continent and beyond. Theatre in Evangelism and Christian Mission is an area of interest within which the researcher has carefully devised plays and sketches for the Presbyterian Church of Ghana.Blessing Makunikea PhD in Africa Studies from the holds University of the Free State in South Africa. He is the Director for Quality Assurance at the University of Zimbabwe. He has also worked as a part-time lecturer in the Department of Political and Administrative Studies at the University of Zimbabwe. His research interests include land reform, poverty alleviation, rural development, and indigenous knowledge systems.
Liveson Tatiraholds a PhD from the University of Zimbabwe and another PhD from Atlantic International University. He is a Senior lecturer in the Department of Curriculum and Arts Education, University of Zimbabwe and is the current chairperson of the Department. He has taught in the same department for eighteen years and has extensively published in books and international journals. Martin Quephie Amlor,a senior lecturer at the Centre for African and International Studies, University of Cape Coast, holds a PhD in Music (Ethnomusicology) from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana and an M.Phil. (African Studies) Degree from the University of Ghana, Legon. He has to his credit, many published articles in International referred journals. Besides being a composer, his research interests include music in African cultures as well as liturgical music of African Christian and Syncretic Churches in Ghana. Andile Mayekisois currently completing his PhD in Social Anthropology at the University of Cape Town (UCT). His interest is on fatherhood and children, particularly the nature of these relationships in post-apartheid South Africa. He has conducted ethnographic research on children born to HIV positive parents in South Africa, has worked with Masibambane NGO and was at one time appointed as a mentor to first year students and a research assistant in Sociology Department at Rhodes University. He has published a number of papers in scholarly journal. Christopher M. Mabezais completing his PhD in the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. He has published on adaptation to climate by rural communities in Zimbabwe and also co – authored the book – Memoirs of an Unsung Legend, Nemeso. He has done consultancy work on climate change awareness for the Government of Zimbabwe that was funded by the United Nations Environment Programme.
Table of ContentsChapter 1 Rethinking African indigenous knowledges and world civilisations: Pasts, presents and the futures………....1 Munyaradzi Mawere Chapter 2 Indigenous knowledge for disaster risk management in Africa: Some showcases from Zimbabwe…………………….19 Munyaradzi Mawere Chapter 3 An evaluation of African traditional scientific knowledge and technological devices………………………………… 39 Pius Oyeniran Abioje Chapter 4 Indigenous Knowledge, conflation and postcolonial translation: Lessons from fieldwork in contemporary rural Zimbabwe……………………………………………...59 Artwell NhemachenaChapter 5 Traditional healers and medicine in South Africa: A quest for legal and scientific recognition……………………… 109 Andile Mayekiso and Munyaradzi Mawere Chapter 6 A history of pre-colonial and colonial wildlife conservation practices in Ghana……………………………………. 131 Kwame Osei Kwarteng Chapter 7 ‘Sheep in sheep’s clothing or wolves in sheep’s clothing?’ Interventions by non-state actors in a changing climatic environment in rural Zimbabwe…………………….. 167 ix