Western incursion into Africa brought with it a repudiation of everything original to the continent. The African way of doing things were classified as backward, unscientific and barbaric. To the point of death from malaria, the westerners that first set foot on Africa refused to drink the herbal remedies offered by the kind natives to alleviate their suffering. Indigenous knowledge was regarded as baseless and summarily dismissed as superstition.
Intuition, metaphysics, sixth sense and other sources of knowledge long depended on, tried and tested by Africans were de-emphasized and western “scientific” method was upheld as the ultimate. The outdoor learning culture of Africans was scoffed at and African children were made to seat in classrooms just like in Europe, to learn the history of the Europeans, the Geography of Europe and the language of the colonialists.
Education became an enigma for the young and impressionable African child, who looked on with confused eyes as his blue eyed teacher explained that Mungo Park discovered the source of the Niger River in 1796. Unable to comprehend, the young child ponders over the fact that the source of the Niger River is just a stone throw away from his home, and yet his forefathers, who lived, fished and farmed on the edge of the river, could not “discover” it. Ashamed of his lineage, the African boy considers the Europeans heroic to have traveled thousands of miles to ‘discover’ a river just by the nose of his own people. He dreams of being like the Europeans, the great discoverers, and understandably looses any regard for his ‘ignorant’ people. The deep rotted inferiority complex leads him to dismiss whatever is African; cloth, food, culture, values, speech, technology and medicine as inadequate and in that same mind-set, he rears his children.