• Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

Pan-Africanism Concept in A Roadmap to African Psychology

Pan-Africanism is a concept many may have heard of by now, but few truly understand. If you were to ask Britannica, it’s the belief that those of African descent should unite since they have the same goals. If you were to ask Dr. Boikai S. Twe, he’d tell you that it means so much more.

On Feb. 22, Dr. Twe held a talk in the loggia section of Sinclair’s library. There, he discussed some of the topics he wrote about in his book, “Grona Boy Go Zion: A Roadmap to African Psychology.” 

Pan-Africanism was born in Haiti after they gained sovereignty in 1804. During this time, Dr. Twe states that Haiti was so united and was home to so many rich resources that it was about as powerful as the US.

So what happened? Dr. Twe believes the decline of Pan-Africanism during the time is directly tied to the downfall of Haiti’s prosperity.

“Pan-Africanism is a promise, but it’s also a paradox. We had to be black in a world where white supremacy is a thing. We haven’t fulfilled the promise because it was based on the idea that we had to convert to western culture. Early pan-Africanists had very little respect for our own culture. Are we western people or African people? Are we Christian people or are we Muslim people?” Twe said.

This gap in understanding one’s true self is what led to the split in African culture and unity. What could bring it back, however, is spirituality. Twe states that he knows how it feels to not know oneself.

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“I wanted and needed to write a book, I had to trust life to guide me. I needed life to guide me because the book had so many questions that needed to be answered. Who am I? Am I all that I say I am? Is this all I’m meant to be?” said Twe.

He then directs his questions to Black members of the audience. “Are you black? Are you really black? What does it mean to be black? You can find the answers if you look in nature.”

Even after finding oneself, there are still five things that Twe believes everyone should focus on when seeking a good life. Those five things being: “Be kind to others, especially the vulnerable,” “Love your neighbor,” “Oneness with nature,” “Sacred Ritual,” and a “Moral code.”

The first thing he believes is to be kind to others, especially those vulnerable. Being kind to the vulnerable can bring kind energies your own way. It’s a very similar idea to karma.

Dion Johnson

Intern