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Recycling Myth and Revisionism in Post-Colonial Discourse
Divine Che Neba (University of Burundi) [BIO]
Myriad of critiques, even at the dawn of the 21st century, still hark back to the clothes of 18th century philosophers (including Hegel) that "... as we see (Negroes) today, so have they always been", with no sense of developing beyond what nature provides them, except through external influence, which to some hardened sceptics, is even impossible. This persistent critical cadence which, seemingly, may never be vectorised amongst “Nation State" scholars, is rooted in centuries of denigration of Blacks as a whole, and from the cosmetic treatment of African values in particular. Revisionist African mythologists see beyond the lens of this world cliché of Black inferiorisation. Ayi kwei Amah, a renowned revisionist mythologist, attempts in Osiris Rising to demythologise and demystify the eternal notion of "forward never, backward ever" by resuscitating the African past as a means of restoring lost African values. This article therefore attempts - through the process of provincialising former centres - to rule out the idea of "forward never”. The process of resuscitation, recycling and integration will not totally discard formally assimilated values, for Africa owes a debt to the "Nation State" and vice versa. Put simply, it is a process of bringing into limelight what has been rejected or ignored for centuries. My argument anchors on the premise that decentring former spheres of influence give birth to new provinces, where each province has a defined autonomy, enabling it to operate with little constraint within the global milieu. The compass of this article does not allow for a protracted study of Armah's works as a whole; rather, it focuses on his regenerative ability of domesticating and recycling the ancient Egyptian myth about "Osiris" and "Isis", with the intention of building a vibrant Africa. In a nutshell, Armah’s proposition on the question of provincialising the "Nation State" includes: reconstructing or mending the dismembered past, by making Africans more African, without totally rejecting its past relationship with the "Nation State".
Patron: President of Austria, Dr. Heinz Fischer
KCTOS: Knowledge, Creativity and