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Monarchy and Democracy: Towards a Cultural Renaissance

Joe Teffo


South Africa is now a few years into her new political dispensation, and she is grappling with the same issues that have plagued Africa since independence especially the challenge of organizing society on the basis of social justice. Painfully aware of the failures of those countries that attained political independence before her, South Africa is exploring all possible political models that might suit her situation. Diverse political theories have been tried in Africa's political life, most of which were transplants from the West. In this connection, South Africa stands a unique chance to break new ground in the creation of a better system of democracy informed by her history, the present political conditions, and what has obtained, and still obtains in the name of democracy in post-independence, or post-colonial Africa. To this end, I will argue that the adoption of traditional institutions, which were neglected in favour of wholesale classical democracy and other alien ideologies, will go a long way in assisting us in fashioning a dispensation unique to our situation. My plea is for an Afrocentric cultural renaissance. South Africa is a young nation with an identity crisis, trying its best to find its feet. Thus critical inputs by citizens and a responsive government could only assist South Africa to grow a better understanding of itself as a nation state. South Africa is unique in that here the African and Western streams meet and can flow together harmoniously. Despite this harmony, the Afro-centric cultural dimension is calling for more respect and space to express itself positively. A contextual democracy responding to South African actuality ought to be developed.

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Journal on African Philosophy. ISSN: 1533-1067 (online).
Editor: Olufemi Taiwo.

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