Justification of the concept of time in Africa

  • Osita Gregory Nnajiofor


The metaphorical concept of African time is one in which tardiness, lousiness and a total disregard for schedules and program is made out to characterize all Africans. Tardiness is a universal phenomenon; it should not be made to hang around African’s neck like a milestone meant to drawn a criminal. This preposterous tag is seen as a harbinger of the continuous cycles of poverty, bad governance, monumental backwardness and a seemingly perpetual over-dependence on other peoples of the world for minimal survival. This, however, cannot be read to mean that Africans lack the notion of time or that of future time. The best we can say is that they lack “time-discipline.” With hermeneutic method, this paper seeks to give some justifications to this notion of African of time or Africans posture to time and observes that Africans relational attitude, her polychromous nature, even lack of some basic amenities, etc. are some of the justifications to these and concludes that there needs to be a balancing (prioritizing) of time vs. events considerations and that most people are usually somewhere in between the two extremes. It is usually necessary to adapt to the time and event orientation of a culture group.


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eISSN: 1597-474X