By Robert W. July
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Extra info for An African Voice: The Role of the Humanities in African Independence
What Nyerere did not wish to import from the West was the individualistic, self-seeking, acquisitive character of its capitalism, and, like Senghor, he rejected the socialism of Europe for he could not, in Africa, accept the socialist doctrine of class conflict. Nyerere, therefore, turned to the communal socialism that he perceived in traditional African society, urging a reassertion of the community solidarity of a way of life in which wealth was produced and shared by all. Nyerere's personalized view of a modern Africa emerged as a mix of old and new, Africa and Europe.
L" Many Africans recoiled from such vulgar incongruities, yet they did not wish to deny the outside world or seek isolation within a narrow past. Political freedom, achieved with the departure of colonial governments, still left residual complications. Economic independence remained elusive, awaiting in part a loosening of external economic constraints. Cultural independence appeared no less important; indeed, during the early independence years there was growing conviction that a vigorous African culture was an essential prerequisite to political health and economic prosperity.
Kenya and Uganda were to find their freedom sorely tried by tribal regionalism; even in Ghana, with its martyred "prison graduates," there were serious divisive forces based upon ethnic and parochial antipathies. Perhaps most striking of all was Cameroon, the first of seventeen states to reach independence during 1960, its solemnities conducted under tight security in the face of terrorist attacks that had shortly before claimed forty lives and caused much destruction of property in Douala," Such fratricidal behavior was compounded by another political legacy of colonialism, the institution of legislative democracy.
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