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Bernard Matolino’s outline of the basis for a new Afro-communitarian democracy


  In this paper, I engage with Bernard Matolino’s proposal for a new Afro-communitarian democracy as presented in his works “An Outline of the basis of a new Afro-communitarian political theory”, “Afro-Communitarian Democracy” and “Consensus as Democracy in Africa”. In these works, Matolino proposes limited communitarianism, which he believes takes care of the challenges presented by majoritarian democracy, socialism, and consensus democracy. His main argument is that democracy is possible in Africa. But this democracy should not be understood as majoritarian, socialist or consensus since these other ideas have their foundation in Afro-communitarianism, which limits individual rights. Instead, democracy should be built on limited communitarianism, which does not diminish individual rights but provides an environment conducive to realizing individual privileges, potentials, and rights. I will go about my task by looking at how Matolino outlines the weaknesses of Afro-communitarianism and the democracy that it inspires. Secondly, I will look at his proposal for a new Afro-communitarian democracy, which he called limited communitarianism, by considering its strengths and weaknesses. 

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