THE HUMANITIES, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: IN SEARCH OF A HOLISTIC DEVELOPMENT FOR THE HUMAN PERSON AND SOCIETY – 21ST CENTURY AFRICA IN PERSPECTIVE
This paper aims to consider the balance of the humanities, science and technology
as twenty-first-century Africa searches for a holistic development for the human
person and society. The arguments represented in the essay and the position
reached thereof derive from the consideration that the complexity of nature, the
hydra-headedness of reality, the heterogeneity and difference exhibited by the
physical world and the otherness of the others, evident in the world confronting
the human condition, demand that science and technology need to combine effort
with the humanities to achieve a holistic development for the human person and
society, given the challenges of twenty-first-century Africa. Thus, a selected
preference for technology, for instance, would not be a complete remedy for
present-day Africa. Specifically, the paper shows that: (i) the use of education,
stretching back to the point of the great divide in the understanding of the aim of
education, insists on the balance between education as instrumental and education
as an end in itself; (ii) there is a nexus between the humanities and praxis; that is,
the humanities are also practical and can be instrumental; (iii) a key proposal for
a holistic development for Africa today is that of holding the rationality of the
sciences, on the one hand, and the morality of the humanities, on the other hand,
in a fruitful balance. The paper adopts the philosophical method of analysis, which
consists of conceptual clarifications, critical interrogation and constructivism, to
arrive the conclusion therein.
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