AAAS Brown Bag Featuring Dr. Brodnicka. : “Being of Micro-cosmic Proportions: The Pursuit of Sacred Synthesis in Bambara and Fulani Ontology.

February 22, 2016

The Department of African American and African Studies is pleased to announce the AAAS Brown Bag featuring our very own Dr. Monika Brodnicka. The talk is scheduled on February 26th at 1:30pm-3:00PM in 386B University Hall


Fulani and Bambara ontology based on the statement “the people of the person are multiple in the person” points to, first and foremost, the characteristic multiplicity of human nature, which involves participation of all cosmic forces. For Amadou Hampaté Bâ, this means that the human being in these traditions is never considered as a singular, monolithic unity but, rather, as a plural, complex being in perpetual motion. Yet, the implications of the statement reach far beyond multiplicity. Paradoxically, they reveal the path toward human synthesis. As an interior multiplicity, the person is considered unfinished at the beginning, but moving toward completion by way of unification of the manifold selves, which constitute the universe. Through this process, the person starts off as a simple medium of the many people within and evolves to become their synthesis, which ultimately leads to the person’s role as reflection of the entire cosmos. Therefore, the aspect of plurality in the concept of personhood is the springboard that launches the transformation of the person from a medium of chaotic forces to an equilibrium point, which ultimately leads to a microcosmic reflection of the universe.