Consciencism: Philosophy and Ideology for Decolonisation

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Panaf, 1978 - Africa - 122 pages
Consciencism Philosophy and Ideology for de-colonisation Kwame Nkrumah Kwame Nkrumah here sets out his personal philosophy,

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Consciencism is a book written by Kwame Nkrumah,it was published by the New York Press (1964).Kwame Nkrumah was an influencial political leader,theorist,socialist and a pan Africanist. He was the first president of Ghana after independence and a key figure of the non-aligned movement. This book depicts his personal philosophy which he termed "consciencism," he did not focus only on "African Revolution," but he gave explanation of its ideology. Nkrumah's consciencism can be described as the philosophy and ideology of attaining socialism. It formed a frame work of his political action.
In this book, he specifies three segments of the African society which are the traditional,christian and islam that coexist uneasily due to their conflicting principles.The book emphasized that African traditional society should recognise the euro Christian and Islam as experiences of the traditional African society since the principles of the capital society conflicts with our socialist egalitarianism.
furthermore,consciencism emphasized the emancipation of the African continent and this could be done by the logistic mobilization of our resources and the recognition of our egalitarianism of our society towads the attainment of our intellect. This lead Nkrumah to what he called "intellectual revolution," which meant the directing our thinking and philosophy towards the redemption of our society.
Moreover he believed in communalism which he urged Africans to take full control of their resource to develop their continent therefore he combined it with socialism which is about social ownership and democratic control of the means of production.Consciencism aimed at decolonising Africa and changing the mindset of the African people to make sure that Africans do not replace their indigenous traditions with that of the western culture.This is commendable.
However, Nkrumah's consciencism focused on the nationalist and socialist approach to address the situation of decolonisation which led to the neglect of the economic aspect of the African society. The book was also too difficult to comprehend and required a lot of time and dedication in reading.
In conclusion,Nkrumah believed that communalism and socialism share egalitarianism which is social equality in fundamental worth or social status. However,the book proposed that Africa can attain socialism by taking a step back to what he termed "Africas antecedent."
 

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About the author (1978)

Born on the Gold Coast (present-day Ghana), the son of a goldsmith and market trader from the Nzima tribe, Kwame Nkrumah was educated in the United States and Great Britain. His earlier degrees were in economics, sociology, and theology, but he also received an M.A. and did doctoral work in philosophy. In 1945 he put aside the academic career for which he had been training under Sir Alfred Ayer and became a Marxian political activist for the cause of Africans at home and abroad. He returned to the Gold Coast in 1947 and led the nationalist movement, for which he was jailed by the British. He was released in 1952, became prime minister, and helped effect independence in 1957, renaming the country Ghana. He served as president until 1966, when he was deposed by a military coup. He died in Bucharest, Rumania, while undergoing treatment for cancer. A distinctive dimension to Nkrumah's political impact was his contribution to Marxist socialist theory, with particular application to today's Africa. In this regard, his theory of "consciencism" is the most central. Nkrumah saw Africa pulled by the three religious value systems represented by indigenous tradition, Islam, and European Christianity. This is what Nkrumah saw as the crisis of African "conscience." Ultimately, according to Nkrumah, the solution lies in the qualified acceptance of Marxist socialism, but a socialism adapted to the cultural context of Africa.

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