MAMPHELE RAMPHELE AND XHOSA CULTURE: SOME INSIGHTS ON CULTURE, SELF-DETERMINATION AND HUMAN RIGHTS FOR SOUTH AFRICAN SOCIAL WORK

  • I Allegritti University of Newcastle, New South Wales
  • M Gray University of Newcastle, New South Wales
Keywords: indigenous social work, African culture, Western culture, masculinity

Abstract

The authors continue the debate about indigenous social work following on from previous work where they identified the importance of culture in the indigenisation process (Gray & Allegri/ti, 2002, 2003; Gray, 2003). They suggested that ii was important to articulate African culture and the way in which it differed from Western culture. To this end, this paper draws on the work of Ramphele {2002), which examines traditional Xhosa practices such as imbeleko and the power of the ancestors in African culture. Ways in which African men establish their identity and masculinity are explored and the implications of these cultural practices for social work are discussed. Using the example of self-determination, which in social work is said to be a universal value, the authors highlight the difference between a local cultural practice which stresses ancestral power and self-determination in social work which values individual autonomy. They point to the importance of universal human rights as a safeguard against unjust traditional ways and suggest that, since South Africa is a signato,y to international human rights charters, African writers need to debate thejustnes of their traditional practices in an increasingly globalising world, especially those which impact on women in an unjust way.

Author Biographies

I Allegritti, University of Newcastle, New South Wales
University of Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia
M Gray, University of Newcastle, New South Wales
University of Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia
Published
2005-04-25
How to Cite
Allegritti, I., & Gray, M. (2005). MAMPHELE RAMPHELE AND XHOSA CULTURE: SOME INSIGHTS ON CULTURE, SELF-DETERMINATION AND HUMAN RIGHTS FOR SOUTH AFRICAN SOCIAL WORK. Social Work/Maatskaplike Werk, 41(2), 131-142. https://doi.org/10.15270/41-2-1014
Section
Articles