If my experience of anthropology in and on Africa is anything to go by, there has been too much of engaged or public anthropology and too little of anthropology as an intellectual pursuit animated by rigorous contemplation and practice on and around a set of shared curiosities.
In this introduction, we outline the general conceptual framework that ties the various contributions to this special issue together. We argue for the importance of anthropology to “take on” mobility and discuss the advantages of the ethnographic approach in doing so. What is the analytical purchase of mobility as one of the root metaphors in contemporary anthropological theorizing?
The higher education system in Africa and South Africa in particular, is still too academic and distant from the developmental challenges of African local communities. The integration of African indigenous knowledge systems (AIKS) into the higher educational system could improve its relevance.
This paper draws on Okot p’Bitek’s Song of Lawino and other critical voices to argue that education in Africa is victim of a resilient colonial and colonizing epistemology, which takes the form of science as ideology and hegemony. Postcolonial African elite justify the resilience of this epistemology and the education it inspires with rhetoric on the need to be competitive internationally.
Having lived amongst several of the groups of indigenous peoples of Amazonia, I
have observed both the quantity of medicinal plants which they use and the efficacy
of many of their cures. I have been treated by these people for intestinal upsets,
parasites, cuts and bruises, headaches and other minor ailments and have personally
The only time that can be influenced is the future. This is obvious since the past has passed and the present does not exist because it is permanently leaving us. But how can we influence the future? It is by building a better future for Africa?
Traditional medicine (TM) is an important and often underestimated part of
health services. In some countries, traditional medicine or non-conventional
medicine may be termed complementary medicine (CM). TM has a long
history of use in health maintenance and in disease prevention and treatment,
particularly for chronic disease.
Indigenous knowledge is entering into the mainstream of
sustainable development and biodiversity conservation discourse.
Article 8(j) of the Convention of Biological Diversity
(Rio, 1992) has contributed to this process by requiring
signatories to: “respect, preserve and maintain knowledge,
innovations and practices of indigenous and local communities