An Introduction to Africana Philosophy / Edition 1

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In this book Lewis R. Gordon offers the first comprehensive treatment of Africana philosophy, beginning with the emergence of an Africana (i.e., African diasporic) consciousness in the Afro-Arabic world of the Middle Ages. He argues that much of modern thought emerged out of early conflicts between Islam and Christianity that culminated in the expulsion of the Moors from the Iberian Peninsula, and from the subsequent expansion of racism, enslavement, and colonialism which in their turn stimulated reflections on reason, liberation, and the meaning of being human. His book takes the reader on a journey from Africa through Europe, North and South America, the Caribbean, and back to Africa, as he explores the challenges posed to our understanding of knowledge and freedom today, and the response to them which can be found within Africana philosophy.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...the "first comprehensive" work to present the different areas, questions, problems, and issues of the "species of Africana thought" which is to be called "philosophy.".... Lewis Gordon's An Introduction to Africana Philosophy had a particularly crucial function to carry out: outline a field still in the process of being constituted. Gordon has accomplished this."
--International Journal of African Historical Studies, Souleymane Bachir Diagne, Columbia University

"Gordon's Introduction to Africana Philosophy is a broad interdisciplinary invitation to students and philosophers to engage in a critical reflection on the "human condition" in Africa and the African diaspora. Students who have taken my class in African philosophy have greatly appreciated his lucid style as well as the historical and thematic analysis of the key concepts and influential scholars that have defined Africana philosophy and mapped out future orientations. It is indeed a historical introduction that works well in the classroom.”
--Elias Kifon Bongmba, Harry and Hazel Chavanne Chair in Christian Theology, Professor of Religious Studies and President of the African Association for the Study of Religion, Rice University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521675468
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 6/2/2008
  • Series: Cambridge Introductions to Philosophy Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 1,027,667
  • Product dimensions: 6.60 (w) x 9.60 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Lewis R. Gordon is Professor of Philosophy, Religion, and Judaic Studies at Temple University, Philadelphia.
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Table of Contents

Preface ix

Introduction: Africana philosophy in context 1

Part I Groundings

1 Africana philosophy as a modern philosophy 21

2 Classic eighteenth- and nineteenth-century foundations 33

Anton Wilhelm Amo 35

Quobna Ottobah Cugoano 40

From David Walker's Appeal to the founding of the American Negro Academy 46

Two Caribbean men of letters Antenor Firmin George Wilmot Blyden 56

Conclusion 65

Part II From New World to new worlds

3 Three pillars of African-American philosophy 69

Anna Julia Cooper and the problem of value 69

W. E. B. Du Bois and the problem of double consciousness 73

Fanon's critique of failed dialectics of recognition 80

4 Africana philosophical movements in the United States and Britain 91

Prophetic and other recent forms of African-American pragmatism 93

Black feminist and womanist thought 100

Afrocentrism and Afrocentricity 106

African-American analytical philosophy 110

African-American and Afro-British European continental philosophy 120

Cedric Robinson's anthropology of Marxism 128

African-American existential philosophy, phenomenology, and their influence 132

5 Afro-Caribbean philosophy 157

6 African philosophy 185

African humanism 186

The theme of invention in recent African philosophy 195

African critiques of invention 200

Recent African political thought 220

Conclusion 249

Guide to further reading 251

Index 260

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