AZA3417 - Africa and its others - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

South Africa School of Social Science


Dr Joseph Minga

Unit guides


South Africa

  • First semester 2017 (Day)


The Dark Continent has been and is still being imagined, analysed and represented in many different ways, by different people on different continents. The title Africa and Its Others can be interpreted in different ways: Africa and its different discoverers/- explorers, Africa and its colonizers, Africa and its diasporas, Africa and its travellers, Africa and its other self and so on. This unit will thus look at how Africa has been and is represented from the outside by outsiders and insiders and from the inside by insiders/outsiders through a variety of materials and various perspectives (literary, anthropological, historical and philosophical).


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to demonstrate knowledge of and familiarity with the following types of information, academic perspectives and skills:

  1. Demonstration of a critical awareness of the ways in which different texts, movies, brochures, posters, paintings, articles and so on, encourage us to interpret and construct Africa in a particular way
  2. A better understanding of Africa and how it relates to the world or how the world relates to her
  3. Appreciation of the significance of the various documents' constructions of (African) identity/ representation within their socio-cultural and historical contexts

  4. Ability to perform a close analysis of the different types of documents used, i.e., in case of a literary text, he should be able to demonstrate a sensitivity to the particular devices, language and strategies employed
  5. Demonstration of an awareness and understanding of the major theoretical approaches in Cultural Studies within academic debate in Africa and internationally
  6. Ability to employ those and evaluate such theoretical approaches in an interpretation of the various documents used in this unit
  7. Intellectual familiarity with the different critical concepts relevant to the unit: othering, Africanism/Africanisation, post-colonialism, post-modernism, cosmopolitanism, transnationalism, globalization, traveling cultures, migration, diasporas, authenticity, ethnicity, hybridity, mimicry, endogeny, exogeny and so on
  8. Students undertaking this unit at a third-year level will be expected to meet all these objective criteria at a higher level of demonstrable and proven competency than those completing the unit at a second-year level.


Within semester assessment: 70% + Exam: 30%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


AZA2417, ATS2417, ATS3417