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Africa has faced some of the great social changes in this century in terms of race, ethnicity, politics, violence, labour relations and industrialisation. Graduates in the social sciences are going to be a critical component to the success of African democracies as they struggle to emerge from the mess in which they have been. Universities are not only essential for the training and nurturing of highly-skilled scholars in this area, but are poised to make a unique contribution to the overall development of post-colonial Africa (1997:180).

The African has always and everywhere presented a concept of the world which is diametrically opposed to the traditional philosophy of Europe. The latter is essentially static, objective, dichotomous; it is, in fact, dualistic, in that it makes an absolute distinction between body and soul, matter and spirit. It is founded on separation and opposition, on analysis and conflict. The African, on the other hand, conceives the world, beyond the diversity of its forms, as a fundamentally mobile yet unique reality that seeks synthesis….This reality is being, in the ontological sense of the word, and it is life force. For the African, matter in the sense the Europeans understand it, is only a system of signs which translates the single reality of the universe: being, which is spirit, which is life force. Thus, the whole universe appears as an infinitely small, and at the same time infinitely large, network of life forces…”


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