In most South African universities, African philosophers and thinkers are pushed to the flanks of contemporary thought and practice. The few that make cameo appearances in course outlines, often occupy the soft world of culture, not political economy, science, philosophy, law, history, etc. This Seminar Series reverses this Hegelian doubt (to wit, whether Africa has a history) and imbalance by familiarising the world with the most palpable, original inspiring contributions of African thinkers to contemporary debates, agendas and practices. It is a vibrant platform for scholars to present how insights from African thinkers have shaped their own thinking and practice. Our focus is global Africa, therefore, contributions will include key thinkers from the fractured African Diaspora who were displaced by slavery, colonialism, and globalization.
Seminar 3: Sylvia Tamale: the Worst Woman of the Year
Speaker: Philile Langa
Facilitator: Dr Mvu Ngcoya
Date: Thursday 29 March
Time: 12h30 – 14h00
Venue: CCS Seminar Room A726, Level 7, Shepstone, Howard College, UKZN
Attaining independence from colonial power is supposed to signal the start of the decolonization process, especially from harmful colonial practices and legacies. It is therefore surprising that the decolonizing and Afrocentric work of Sylvia Tamale has led her to being labelled as the worst woman of the year in her own country. In this lecture, Philile Langa considers the contributions of this feminist Ugandan legal scholar. Tamale’s work has primarily focused on the African human body as a site of power and control. She explores how organised religion, the law, culture and spiritual convictions challenge and potentially transform the sexualities of African peoples. Tamale’s work has made significant contributions to how demands for sexual citizenship have spawned numerous social movements in Africa to confront dominant sexual discourses and demand increased sexual autonomy. Reading her work as a decolonizing and Afrocentric move, Philile assesses Tamale’s contribution to decolonized African identities.