Four questions on curriculum development in contemporary South Africa
South African Journal of Philosophy
This article explores current issues in South African philosophy curriculum design. Four questions are considered, each followed by a supplementary note. Firstly, the place of philosophy from other traditions, particularly Western philosophies, in South African curricula is considered (rather than the place of African philosophy in curricula). The related note reflects on whether different philosophical traditions in curricula should be treated separately or integrated. Secondly, ambiguity in
... me important authors' reception of plural traditions is identified and investigated to see what we can derive from their example for our philosophical practice. The related note looks at "decolonisation of the curriculum". Thirdly, I affirm the importance of relevance as a criterion for curriculum development, interrogating the meaning of this criterion for philosophy. The related note focuses on interpreting student feedback. Fourthly, the continued presence of "white" lecturers in South African philosophy departments is discussed against the background of the tension between the Mandela and Biko paradigms in contemporary society. The related note considers ideological resonances of our response to this issue in other parts of the world. Finally, the article's ideas are presented as an attempt to map argumentative options, clarify some of their merits and implications, and acknowledge their limits. 1 Another descriptor could be chosen for the paradigm. I selected the name for the sake of convenience, to suggest a trend, rather than to identify the paradigm with one specific articulation thereof. 2 Throughout this article, I use the terms "black" and "white" to denote "races" as social constructions only.