Foundations of an African Ethic by Benezet Bujo
Publication Date: 2001-08-01
In this groundbreaking book, Bénézet Bujo, a leading voice in African Christian theology, offers an informed critique of Western ethics and lays the theoretical groundwork for a new African ethic. By skillfully drawing on themes from African life such as marriage, therapy, and art, Bujo exposes the shortcomings of the philosophical anthropology implicit in Western ethics, comparing Western theories of natural law, discourse ethics, and communitarianism with the African emphasis on community and remembrance. He then considers whether African ethics can account for central Western values such as autonomy, freedom, and individual identity. Finally, he considers how African ethics both challenges the Church and contributes to its richness, suggesting that an African palaver ethic can integrate the best features of communitarianism and discourse ethics. This timely contribution to African theology will be of special interest to students of religion, comparative and non-Western philosophy, anthropology, and African studies, as well as those intrigued by ongoing debates about universal ethical norms.