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The Demise of the Inhuman

Afrocentricity, Modernism, and Postmodernism

Ana Monteiro-Ferreira

Publication Year: 2014

Employs a critical Afrocentric reading of Western constructions of knowledge so as to overcome the dehumanizing tendencies of modernity.

Published by: State University of New York Press

Title Page, Copyright Page, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Foreword

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pp. ix-xii

In a rare display of the combination of brilliance and boldness, Ana Monteiro-Ferreira has written about the annihilating impact of contemporary globalization in a manner that will cause many sensitive theorists to pause. The reason this is so is because her appropriation of two important tropes of the current dialogue in the academy, the inhuman and agency, has created an...

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Preface

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pp. xiii-xvi

The title of this work reflects my concern with the annihilating effects of the contemporary globalization and technologization of science and society and draws on Jean-François Lyotard’s (2007) double concept of inhuman1 and Molefi Kete Asante’s (2009a) fundamental critique of Western discourse,2 because my work is a critical reading of the Western constructions of knowledge both in its origins and dehumanizing consequences....

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xvii-19

I could not have completed this manuscript without the support of more people than I could mention, but yet my appreciation and gratitude still extends to all.
A lifelong learner reveres masters, and my respect is equally shared over the Atlantic Ocean between two major founding centers of my culture and knowledge: the School of Humanities at...

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Relevance of a Dialogue

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pp. xix-xxii

The dialogue that follows between Westernity and Afrocentricity can be summarized as a debate between rational individualistic values and holistic ones. I think that this discourse operates in the realms of personal spaces, community, the world, and nature....

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Chapter One: Context and Theory: Molefi Kete Asante and the Afrocentric Idea

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pp. 1-12

Afrocentricity materialized as a theory of knowledge in 1980 under Molefi Kete Asante’s philosophical thinking while also posing a systematic challenge to Western epistemology. It emerged in the African American cultural panorama as a set of premises that would account for the understanding of an African sense of totality and wholeness in a network of multiple and particular...

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Chapter Two: Reason and Analysis: Africana and New Interpretations of Reality

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pp. 13-36

Much of what constitutes the matrix of Westernity has its roots in the conceptual framework of the philosophical thought of René Descartes, Immanuel Kant, G. W. F. Hegel, and Max Weber exactly in the same sense that the roots of Afrocentric philosophical thought can be found in the historiographical research of Cheikh Anta Diop and its reclamation of the anteriority of...

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Chapter Three: Afrocentricity and Modernism: Innovative Encounters with History and Ideology

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pp. 37-90

At the dawn of the twentieth century Africa’s struggle for independence and self-determination was the embodiment of a vaster African want for liberation from oppressive colonial domination. Indeed the quest was more than political and included economic, cultural, and social agency, because European modernity was the face of the oppression....

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Chapter Four: Afrocentricity and Postmodernism: The Moment of Truth

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pp. 91-156

The desacralization of the hero by existentialist philosophy, heir to Jürgen Habermas’s criticism on modernity and rationalization, represented eventually the strongest and most powerful reaction to the fixed and absolute meanings of modernity. Indeed, the idea is that instead of the fulfillment of the promise...

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Chapter Five: The Paradigmatic Rupture: Critical Africology

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pp. 157-168

In more than one sense this discourse represents the journey of an intellectual moving from an epistemological location in Western postmodernism to become an Afrocentric scholar. It is the expression of the process of my quest to defeat the inhuman, my search for a more humanistic and ideologically less polluted mind and a more favorable approach to human possibilities....

Notes

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pp. 169-180

Bibliography

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pp. 181-198

Index

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pp. 199-216

Back Cover

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E-ISBN-13: 9781438452265
Print-ISBN-13: 9781438452258

Page Count: 238
Publication Year: 2014

Research Areas

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Subject Headings

  • Afrocentrism -- Philosophy.
  • Agent (Philosophy).
  • Globalization -- Social aspects.
  • Technology -- Social aspects.
  • Modernism (Aesthetics) -- Social aspects.
  • Postmodernism -- Social aspects.
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