The Relevance of Ubuntu, African Philosophy in Diversity Oriented Organizations and Universities of Today’s Globalized World: Indiana University Experience

By Betty S. Dlamini.

Published by The International Journal of Diversity in Education

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Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper is an exploration of diversity in organizations, especially universities. It claims that the diverse constituents of universities do not guarantee diversity awareness because there are multiple intricacies that need to be explored when conducting diversity education. It reveals and discusses some challenges that exist within higher education and claims that Ubuntu, African philosophy is an appropriate approach to employ in diversity education because of its humane and community focused nature. It discusses Ubuntu as laid down by scholars who advocate for its relevance in conflict resolution in the 21st century. It concludes with an illustration of Ubuntu in universities by utilizing the case of Indiana University because of its diversity policy that has some of Ubuntu attributes and explains that the resemblance does not mean that IU necessarily ascribes to Ubuntu and adds that if IU was to learn more about Ubuntu and formally ascribe to it, the diversity education outcomes would catapult. The very concluding words invite other scholars to consider exploring Ubuntu and trying it in their diversity oriented programs.

Keywords: Intersection, Multiple Identities, Ubuntu, Indiana University

The International Journal of Diversity in Education, Volume 12, Issue 3, pp.149-158. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 366.415KB).

Dr. Betty S. Dlamini

Professor, African Studies Program, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana, USA

Dr Betty Sibongile Dlamini is a professor at Indiana University, USA. She graduated from the University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) with a PhD in African Languages and Cultures. She is an alumnus of the University of Sussex (Brighton) where she obtained her MA in English Literature and the University of South Africa (UNISA) where she obtained a BA Honors in English. She obtained her B. Ed degree from the University of Swaziland, where she taught English Literature in the Institute of Long Distance Learning of the University of Swaziland. She is a published author of Our Song, Our Dance, Our Drama, Our Development, a text book for Southern African Cultures, Asikhulume SiSwati: let’s speak SiSwati, a text book for learners of SiSwati as a foreign language, UMsamaliya Lolungile, a SiSwati novel that won the Macmillan grand prize of 2008, The Eagle: From a chicken run to the sky, a woman’s walk of faith, her autobiography, “Comfort,” a short story in I will be home for Christmas, a total of eight articles in the Dictionary of African Bibliography, three journal articles and a total of twenty four Zulu and Siswati short stories and plays in thirteen anthologies. Her research interests diverse, including Southern African Performance Arts and Development, Women and Gender, Comparative Cultures: African American and Southern Africa, Post-Colonial Studies and Diversity in Institute of Higher Education!