An Afro-Existential Approach to the Development of the Nigerian Society

Oliver Ozoemena Onah • Hyginus Chibuike Ezebuilo • Chinyere Theodora Ojiakor
Journal article International Journal of English Literature and Social Sciences • September 2018 Nigeria

Abstract

The role of philosophy in nation building is hardly given the recognition it deserves in the African society. In this regard, philosophers are often seen as those who see problems where none exist, rather than people who inspire critical thinking. Yet, the role of philosophy in nation building cannot be dismissed with a wave of hand. The focus of this paper is basically to establish the relevance of existentialist philosophy to national development. To this end, we situate our discourse within a particular African context. The African world view would be discussed mainly from the context of the Igbo world view. This is the crux of the whole work. To this effect, the full implication of the Afro-existential approach will unfold as the work unfolds. One branch of philosophy that has made waves in various disciplines is existentialism. This paper is therefore an attempt to establish the relevance of existentialist philosophy to national development, with a particular focus on Nigeria. It understands existentialism as a trend in philosophy that lays emphasis on man's existence with regard to such themes as individual freedom and choice, and the individual creating meaning in a meaningless universe. In this connection, it examines the role of the Afro-existential discourse as a new approach in African philosophy. It addresses such questions as, why is Nigeria underdeveloped. Do we have to continue looking for historical forces or factors to blame? What can the philosopher and the existential discourse contribute to the development of Nigeria? It concludes that, confronted with the underdeveloped state of Nigeria, the existentialists do not overly ignore history. However, they are more concerned with the present situation and the choices that confront us as individuals. Making the right choices and taking the right steps today is therefore the way philosophers would establish their relevance through the existential discourse.

Metrics

  • 0 views
  • 0 downloads

Journal

International Journal of English Literature and Social Sciences

The International Journal of English Literature and Social Sciences (IJELS) is a bimonthly, doubl... see more