Marcien Towa’s African Philosophy


The Idea of a Negro-African Philosophy is a short book originally published in 1979. It is a concise, yet thorough and systematic, exploration of the question of African philosophy as it emerges out of the central concerns of the postcolonial present. “Propositions on Cultural Identity” a short article, published in the same year, is a succinct philosophic exploration of the question of identity, as it pertains to the cultural, political and economic issues linked to Africa’s politico-economic dependence on the West. In both texts – presented here in translation for the first time – Towa engages the question of African Philosophy by concretely exploring and showing how this question is organically linked to the efforts of the Continent aimed at reclaiming its economic, political, historical and existential actuality. Broaching the question from slightly differing, yet complimentary, angles Towa articulates a stance that directly engages the central concerns of African independence, in the context of a postcolonial world that is still tied to the apron-strings of its former colonisers.