The Demise of the Inhuman_ Afrocentricity, Modernism, and Postmodernism
Employs a critical Afrocentric reading of Western constructions of knowledge so as to overcome the dehumanizing tendencies of modernity.
Afrocentricity is the most intellectually dominant idea in the African world, one that is having a growing impact on social science discourse. This paradigm, philosophically rooted in African cultures and values, fundamentally challenges major epistemological traditions in Western thought, such as modernism and postmodernism, Marxism, existentialism, feminism, and postcolonialism. In The Demise of the Inhuman, Ana Monteiro-Ferreira reviews what Molefi Kete Asante has called the “infrastructures of dominance and privilege,” arguing that Western concepts such as individualism, colonialism, race and ethnicity, universalism, and progress, are insufficient to overcome various forms of oppression. Afrocentricity, she argues, can help lead us beyond Western structures of thought that have held sway since the early fifteenth century, towards a new epistemological framework that will enable a more human humanity.
Ana Monteiro-Ferreira is Assistant Professor of Africology and African American Studies at Eastern Michigan University.