African Cosmology

Kwame Agyei Akoto & Akua Nson Akoto

In: Encyclopedia of Black Studies

African Cosmology

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  • A cosmology is a body or system of thought arising out of a people's history and culture that addresses issues of reality and creation, truth and value, meaning, process, and that people's place within creation. It can be differentiated from the more general term, cosmogony, which is a people's mythohistorical description of the creation of the universe or, put more simply, their creation story. Alhough indigenous African cosmologies appear to differ according to geography and regional histories, the degree to which they coincide in fundamental principles and function defines them as multiple expressions of a single cultural and cosmological construct.

    In the cosmologies of traditional Africa, the physical existence of human beings is a limited but representative (complementary or synchronistic) expression of the cosmic order mandated ...

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