Challenge of Culture in Africa
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Challenge of Culture in Africa

From Restoration to Integration

Bernard Nsokika Fonlon

This book was first published as a two-part essay in 1965 and 1967 in ABBIA – Cameroon Cultural Review – under the title “Idea of Culture”. Its main argument is that indigenous Africans cultures must be the foundation on which the modern African cultural structure should be raised; the soil into which the new seed should be sown; the stem into which the new scion should be grafted; the sap that should enliven the entire organism. This culture, the object of imperialist mockery and rejected, needs rehabilitation. However, such rehabilitation of African culture cannot be a mere archaeological enterprise. It will not answer to dig up the past and live it as it was. Not only is African culture not without its imperfections, times change and African culture must adapt itself, at every turn, to the changing times. In restoring African culture, it is imperative to steer clear of two extremes: on the one hand, the imperialist arrogance which declared everything African as only fit for the scrap-heap and the dust-bin, and, on the other hand, the overly enthusiastic and rather naive tendency to laud every aspect of African culture as if it were the quintessence of human achievement.

ISBN 9789956578986 | 96 pages | 203 x 127 mm | 2010 | Langaa RPCIG, Cameroon | Paperback

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About the Author

Bernard Nsokika Fonlon

Professor Bernard Nsokika Fonlon, M.A., Ph.D., (Nui) Dip. Ed. (Oxon), born 19 November 1924 in Nso, North West Region of Cameroon, died 26 August 1986. He was a government minister and leading intellectual of Cameroon. A man of diverse abilities, Fonlon was characterized as the Cameroonian Socrates. He was a major promoter of bilingualism, as reflected in the journal Abbia: Cameroon Cultural Review that he founded in the early 1960s.

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