THE AFRICAN WORLDVIEW AS THE BASIS OF PRACTICE IN THE HELPING PROFESSIONS

  • Dumisani Thabede Senior Lecturer, Department of Social Work, University of Venda, South Africa.

Abstract

This paper endeavours to point out some of the specific elements that constitute the African worldview that both educators and practitioners in the helping professions should be aware of when providing social casework/counselling services to African people. Social workers need to be sensitive to the African worldview when dealing with African clients, because this worldview informs the way in which Africans relate to phenomena, including challenges that life presents to African clients. In this paper the following aspects will be addressed: the meaning of the African worldview; the existence of thee African worldviews; the rationale for embracing the African worldview; the unity/common elements of the African worldview/culture; and the elements of the African worldview that caseworkers have to consider (beliefs and practices) such as belief in God, belief in ancestors, belief in witchcraft and traditional healing, polygamy, rites of passage.

References

ASANTE, M. & ASANTE, K. 1985. African culture. Westport: Greenwood Press.

ASANTE, M. 1987. The afrocentric idea. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.

ASANTE, M. 1999. The painful demise of eurocentrism. Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press.

BARKER, R.L. 1999. The Social Work Dictionary. Washington, DC: NASW Press.

CRAIG, G. 1983. Human development. New Jersey: Prentice Hall.

DANIELS, J.E. 2001. Africentric social work practice. International Social Work, 44:301-309.

EARHART, B. 1993. The religious traditions of the world. San Francisco: Harper.

GRAHAM, J. & AL-KRENAWI, A. 2003. Multicultural social work in Canada. Canada: Oxford University Press.

GRAY, C.C. 2001. Afrocentric thought and praxis: an intellectual history. Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, Inc.

GUMEDE, M.V. 1990. Traditional healers: a medical doctor’s perspective. Johannesburg: Skotaville Publishers.

GYEKYE, K. 1995. African philosophical thought: the Akan conceptual scheme. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.

HAMMOND-TOOKE, W.D. 1972. The structuring of chaos: anthropological approaches to the human mind. Johannesburg: Witwatersrand University Press.

HAMMOND-TOOKE, W.D. 1974. The Bantu-speaking peoples of Southern Africa. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.

HAMMOND-TOOKE, W.D. 1993. The roots of Black South Africa. Johannesburg: Jonathan Publishers.

KAMALU, C. 1990. Foundations of African thought. London: Karnak House.

KORBER, I. 1990. Indigenous healers in a future mental health system: a case for cooperation. Psychology in Society, 14:47-62.

KOTTLER, A. 1988. Professionalization of African healers. Apparent problems and constraints. Psychology in Society, 11:2-17.

MAGUBANE, P. 1998. Vanishing cultures of South Africa. Cape Town: Struik Publishers.

MAZRUI, A. 1986. The Africans: a triple heritage. London: BBC Publications.

MBITI, J.S. 1990. African religions and philosophy. Johannesburg: Heinemann.

McPHATTER, A.R. 1997. Cultural competence in child welfare: what is it? How do we achieve it? What happens without it? Child Welfare, 76:255-278.

MEKADA, J.G. 1999. The African-centered worldview: toward a paradigm for social work. Journal of Black Studies, 30(2):53-59.

NABWIRE, C. 1968. The transferability of North American social work to Black Africa. Milton Obote Foundation.

REVE, N. 1995. The legitimacy of Jesus: an Afrocentric reading of the birth of Jesus. Cape Town: Department of Religious Studies, University of Cape Town. (MA Thesis)

RUCH, E.A. & ANYANWU, K.C. 1981. African philosophy, an introduction to the main philosophical trends in contemporary Africa. Rome: Catholic Book Agency.

SANVILLE, J.B. 2000. Intracultural and intercultural dialogue in psychoanalytic psychotherapy and psychoanalysis. Clinical Social Work Journal, 28:417-429.

SCHIELE, J.H. 2000. Human services and the Afrocentric paradigm. New York: The Haworth Press.

SWIGONSKI, M.E. 1996. Challenging privilege through Africentric social work practice. Social Work, 41(2):153-162.

SCHWEITZER, R.D. 1980. Indigenous therapy in Southern Africa. Bulletin of the British Psychological Society, 33:278-281.

SODI, T. 1998. A phenomenological study of healing in a North Sotho community. Cape Town: University of Cape Town. (PhD thesis)

TORREY, E.F. 1972. Witchdoctors and psychiatrists: the common roots of psychotherapy and its future. New Jersey: Jason Aronson.

VAN DER WALT, B.J. 1997. Afrocentric or Eurocentric? Our task in a multicultural South Africa. Potchefstroom: Potchefstroom University.

WESTEN, D. 1996. Psychology, mind, brain and culture. New York: John Willey and Sons.

Published
2014-06-20
How to Cite
Thabede, D. (2014). THE AFRICAN WORLDVIEW AS THE BASIS OF PRACTICE IN THE HELPING PROFESSIONS. Social Work/Maatskaplike Werk, 44(3). https://doi.org/10.15270/44-3-237
Section
Articles