This article is a response to a qualitative study that examined how the indigenous African notion of ubuntu informs how some school teachers in a Black township in South Africa conceptualize Western-oriented narratives of democracy. While the study acknowledges important differences in how ubuntu is understood and defined, the author argues that it nonetheless tends to overlook them in order to harness ubuntu as a force for positive social change and national development. The author argues that ubuntu could potentially serve as a powerful cultural force for change, but this requires a context in which some of the moral qualities associated with ubuntu are more widely practiced and visible in communities and in the policies and practices of government at all levels. It also requires a reconceptualization of ubuntu as an inclusive and nonessentialized notion that is responsive to the practical needs of contemporary South African society.
Response to Article
Patricia K. Kubow and Mina Min, The Cultural Contours of Democracy: Indigenous Epistemologies Informing South African Citizenship
Drawing on the Past to Open Up Possible Futures. A Response to "The Cultural Contours of Democracy: Indigenous Epistemologies Informing South African Citizenship".
Democracy and Education,
(1), Article 10.
Available at: https://democracyeducationjournal.org/home/vol26/iss1/10