Exploring the Philosophy of Godfrey B. Tangwa


  • Mbih Jerome Tosam The University of Bamenda
  • Denis-Ghislain Mbessa


Godfrey B. Tangwa, epistemic decolonisation, African philosophy, African bioethics, epistemic injustice


In this paper, we critically examine Godfrey Banyuy Tangwa’s philosophy. We argue that Tangwa’s thought, like most thinkers, is largely influenced by his historical and cultural experiences. His philosophy can be studied under three principal and closely related axes: The first is philosophy as an instrument of social and cultural transformation. The second axe is concerned with giving voice to indigenous African values and knowledge systems. In a global academic arena dominated by Euro-American epistemological systems, Tangwa’s work seeks to decolonize indigenous African epistemologies from Western misrepresentation and to challenge the purported universal validity of Western systems of thought. The third angle is concerned with criticism as a tool for social enhancement through democracy and meritocracy. According to Tangwa, there is no such thing as a superior or inferior culture, since no culture is perfect given that human beings, the inventors of culture, are imperfect. However, all human cultures are perfectible. Genuine cultural progress will be possible only when all cultures are given voice, self-criticize their beliefs and values, and beg and borrow from each other. Tangwa’s epistemic pluralism resonates in almost all areas of his thought. This paper is merely an introduction to Tangwa’s philosophy; we do not claim to exhaust his vast and eclectic thought in a single paper.



How to Cite

Tosam, M. J. ., & Denis-Ghislain Mbessa. (2023). Exploring the Philosophy of Godfrey B. Tangwa. JOURNAL OF ARTS AND HUMANITIES, 7(1), 64–90. Retrieved from https://fajournaluba.com/index.php/jah/article/view/120