A Short History of African Philosophy

A Short History of African Philosophy

3.54 (11 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

List price: US$13.56

Currently unavailable

We can notify you when this item is back in stock

Add to wishlist

AbeBooks may have this title (opens in new window).

Try AbeBooks


In this accessible book, Barry Hallen discusses the major ideas, figures, and schools of thought in African philosophy. While drawing out critical issues in the formation of African philosophy, Hallen focuses on the recent scholarship, current issues, and relevant debates that have made African philosophy an important key to understanding the rich and complex cultural heritage of Africa. Hallen builds upon Africa's connections with Western philosophical traditions and explores African contributions to cultural universalism, cultural relativism, phenomenology, hermeneutics, and Marxism. Hallen also examines African challenges to Western conceptions of philosophy by taking on questions such as whether philosophy can exist in cultures that are significantly based in oral traditions and what may or may not constitute philosophical texts. Among the figures whose work is discussed are Ptah-hotep (Egypt, 3rd millennium BCE), Zar'a Ya'aqob (Abyssinia, 17th century), Anton Wilhelm Amo (Ghana, 18th century), Paulin Hountondji, V. Y. Mudimbe, Oyeronke Oyewumi, Kwame Anthony Appiah, and Kwasi Wiredu.This clearly written, highly readable, and concise work will be essential for students and scholars of African philosophy as well as readers with a wide range of interests in African studies.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 144 pages
  • Indiana University Press
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • English
  • 2nd edition
  • 1 index
  • 0253109183
  • 9780253109187

Table of contents

Preliminary Table of Contents: AcknowledgmentsIntroduction1. The Historical Perspective2. Twentieth Century Origins3. Rationality as Culturally Universal4. Rationality as Culturally Relative5. Ethnophilosophy and Philosophical Sagacity6. Phenomenology and Hermeneutics7. Socialism and Marxism8. Philosophy and Culture9. Histories, Anthologies, Introductions to African Philosophy, Journals and WebsitesConclusionBibliographyIndexshow more

About Barry Hallen

Barry Hallen is Professor of Philosophy and Chair of the Philosophy and Religion Department at Morehouse College. He is Associate in the W. E. B. DuBois Institute for Afro-American Research at Harvard University. He is author of The Good, the Bad, and the Beautiful: Discourse About Values in Yoruba Culture (Indiana University Press) and coauthor (with J. Olubi Sodipo) of Knowledge, Belief, and Witchcraft: Analytic Experiments in African Philosophy.show more

Rating details

11 ratings
3.54 out of 5 stars
5 9% (1)
4 45% (5)
3 36% (4)
2 9% (1)
1 0% (0)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X