Conversations about decolonising higher education are largely theoretical, conceptual, or historical, with less discussion about what is happening today, in terms of current efforts. Many of the mainstream conversations are Western European or US driven. We wanted to specifically tap into the challenges and opportunities that African-based scholars see, to concretely think about what it really means to decolonise.
This book investigated what decolonising higher education looks like in different local contexts including in Namibia, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia, Ghana, and Djibouti. It vocalised these conversations to encourage a Pan African discussion.
Most chapters help define decoloniality and how to localise knowledges in relation to universities. One specific example of decoloniality in practice is a chapter by Bitugu and Luguterah, who clarify the historic roots of physical education in Ghana. While schools and universities teach sports imported by the west (such as football and cricket), local indigenous sport and athletic games are still practiced by children outside of school. To decolonise physical education, the authors suggest, in addition to continuing western sports, shifting to a foundation in traditional games and sports, which are ways to teach history and culture, as well as teamwork, physical competence, and movement.
The chapters, written by administrators in African higher education, reflected on their experiences of leading efforts to decolonise, and provided concrete examples of what decolonising looks like on the ground. Chapters clarify decolonial contexts in Namibia, Zambia, Uganda, Djibouti, Ghana, and South Africa.