NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
PDF on ERIC Download full text
ERIC Number: EJ1135775
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-2161-7252
The Re-Birth of African Moral Traditions as Key to the Development of Sub-Saharan Africa: The Igbo Paradigm
Okpalikel, Chika J. B. Gabriel
Journal of International Education and Leadership, v5 n1 Spr 2015
This work is set against the backdrop of the Sub-Saharan African environment observed to be morally degenerative. It judges that the level of decadence in the continent that could even amount to depravity could be blamed upon the disconnect between the present-day African and a moral tradition that has been swept under the carpet through history; this tradition being grounded upon a world view. World-view lies at the basis of the interpretation and operation of the world. It is the foundation of culture, religion, philosophy, morality and so forth; an attempt of humans to impose an order in which the human society works. Most times when the African world-view is discussed, the Africa often thought of and represented is the Africa as before in which it is very likely to see religion and community feature as two basic characters of Africa from which morality can be sifted. In his popular work "Things Fall Apart", Chinua Achebe had above all things shown that this old Africa has been replaced by a new breed and things cannot be the same again. In the first instance, the former African communalism in which the community was the primary beneficiary of individual wealth has been wrestled down by capitalism in which the individual is defined by the extent in which he accumulates surplus value. The African individual within the stress of the capitalist invasion lost the old community morality and has been incapable of developing a third, the earlier two having eluded them; mired in the unfamiliar capitalist terrain, the corresponding society devoid of tribal, ethnic, kindred, clan and family ties which sustains communalism did not evolve. What remained is the imbalance between the capitalist system and communalist consciousness as there is the amalgam of western democratic society and citizens steeped in African tribal consciousness. In the second instance, religion which is another essential character of Africa is problematic. Africans have adopted a religion which completely excludes their ancestors, sacred institutions, persons and spaces. Yet the morality that could possibly be acquired via this new religion has been elusive of an African hold. Against this backdrop, the present writer thinks that the old African moral community has been lost in the morass of foreign ideologies that has plagued the continent from the 19th century. Why can't democracy be sustained, diseases and poverty eradicated, rocket technologies initiated, large industries and megacities constructed, maintained and sustained in Africa without foreign interventions? The simple explanation is that the African moral community once destroyed has not been reconstructed; moral ideas and institutions, moral persons and group of persons, moral situations and environment have been subjected to the jangling discord of their western models. The present work identifies Sub-Saharan Africa especially as morally impoverished; proffers reasons for such claims and establishes the grounds for the possibility of the reconstitution of a moral community which will serve as a springboard for sustainable development in the continent.
Journal of International Education and Leadership. 432 Rittiman Road, San Antonio, Texas 78209. Tel: 210-519-9870; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Africa
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A