Decolonizing African History

  • Language: English
  • Vol. 15, 2022
  • ISBN: 978-3-906927-50-3
  • eISBN: 978-3-906927-51-0
  • ISSN: 2297-7058
  • eISSN: 2297-704X
Toyin Falola

Decolonizing African History

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Decolonizing African history involves efforts toward ending European intellectual hegemony over Africa’s political, economic, historical, and cultural ways. As an intellectual undertaking, decolonizing African history emphasizes the study of African history from an African perspective.

In this lecture Falola seeks to liberate African knowledge, his goal is the adoption and adaptation of traditional African modes of knowing and knowledge creation. It conveys the essence of decolonization in African history: its origins and nature, reasons, methods, goals, and expected outcomes. It argues for the development of an indigenous knowledge-based system in sync with African realities and capable of carving out autonomous models to alleviate Africa’s political, economic, sociocultural, and innovative leadership overdependence on the “developed world.” Finally, if African societies can be shown to be on par with other major societies throughout the world, there is no reason they should not be able to control their own destiny.

Toyin Falola is professor of African Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, where he holds the Jacob and Frances Sanger Mossiker Chair in the Humanities. Falola is one of the most eminent and widely published historians of Africa. His academic career started at the University of Ife, Ile Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University) where he earned his PhD in 1981. He then joined the University of Texas, which has been his academic home for more than thirty years with shorter teaching appointments at other universities in Canada, England, USA, Australia and Nigeria. His important contribution and service to the field of African Studies and History earned him many distinctions, awards and honorary doctorates. Falola edited numerous influential volumes and monographies. His most recent and very timely monographs are Decolonizing African Studies. Knowledge Production, Agency, and Voice (Rochester University Press 2022) and Decolonizing African Knowledge. Autoethnography and African Epistemologies (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2022).

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