Three models of contemporary African philosophy: Logical criticisms and recommendations

  • Darty Emmanuel Darty
  • Uwemedimo Isaac Akpan-Umoh
Keywords: African philosophy, logic, complementarity, consolationism, conversationalism.


Many systems of thought have been constructed in the contemporary period of African philosophy. We considered three of such systems, namely: Innocent Asouzu‟s Complementary reflection, Ada Agada‟s Consolationism and Jonathan Chimakonam‟s Conversationalism. The problem that this work observed in Asouzu‟s idea is located in his principle of integration which states that anything that exists (being) serves a missing link of reality. This notion of being was shown in this work to be problematic for the African conception of God as an absolute being. If God is absolute as widely held in many African cultures, then there exists a being that is not a „missing link‟ since it is self-sufficient and complete. With this, Asouzu‟s principle of integration needs to be revised from a universally quantified to an existentially quantified assertion in order to overcome the explicit contradiction posed by the conception of God as an absolute being to the principle of integration. Agada‟s Consolationism as well has a similar problem. It holds two contradicting conceptions of the God being as one that is both within and above the reach of the „tragedy of existence‟. Chimakonam‟s Conversationalism unlike the two previous systems which have clearly metaphysical and existential leanings, lacks clear statements on the nature of reality, knowledge and values as they present themselves to the Conversationalist. This makes Chimakonam‟s attempt at giving extensionally defining examples of conversationalist metaphysics, for instance, to be logically flawed, thereby underscoring the need for precise definitions. This work recommended that there is need to make explicit, the metaphysical, epistemological and axiological perspectives of Conversationalism.


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eISSN: 1119-443X