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Beyond Anthropocentricity – Botho/Ubuntu and the Quest for Economic and Ecological Justice in Africa

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This essay suggests that the anthropocentric interpretations of the concept of botho/ubuntu in African intellectual scholarship, whether religious, theological and social sciences, limit the potential of botho/ ubuntu in the quest for the fullness of life, and the affirmation of the integrity of creation, wholeness and wellbeing. The essay suggests therefore that when the expanded and creative interpretation of botho which acknowledges its socio-economic, political, and ecological scope or horizon is utilised, it has the potential to become a resource, principle and norm for overcoming ecological degradation and economic injustices in the world today. The essay thus posits botho/ubuntu as a vibrant, vital and ecologically and economically viable principle and norm for the wellbeing of humanity and of the integrity of creation.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Systematic Theology and Theological Ethics, University of South Africa, P.O. Box 392, 0003 UNISA, Republic of South Africa

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