Research / Theory

Six theses on African psychology for the world

Jan Smuts in university regalia

Six theses on African psychology for the world is an editorial published in the journal PINS (Psychology in Society). Among other procative questions it asks is, could the anglophile Jan Christiaan Smuts (pictured), be regarded as the first father of African psychology? While a student at Oxford University, Smuts is said to have completed a manuscript in which he analysed the personality of the US poet Walt Whitman.

Similarly, could Reymond William Wilcocks, who was appointed the first head of a psychology department on the African continent, be regarded as the real father of African psychology?

Or does the title of father of African psychology in the country properly belong to Noel Chabani Manganyi who published his paper on hysteria in African women in 1969.

The larger, implied question here is, of course, when can white men, who were often cruel to and murdered the indigeous and black people, be considered fathers of African psychology.

Comments on the article are welcome.


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