Special

Sunday, 29 July 2012 22:51

Jean Piaget : Men of Ideas

Written by
Jean Piaget was born on August 9, 1896 in Neuchatel, Switzerland and died September 17, 1980. He was an influential experimenter and theorist in the field of developmental psychology and in the study of human intelligence. His father was devoted to his writings of medieval literature and the history of Neuchatel. Piaget learned from his father the value of systematic work, even in small matters. His mother was very intelligent, energetic, and kind, but had a rather neurotic temperament that made family life troublesome. Her mental health influenced his studies of psychology and he became interested in psychoanalysis and pathological…
Sunday, 29 July 2012 22:49

John Locke : Men of Ideas

Written by
1. Life John Locke was born at Wrington, a village in Somerset, on August 29, 1632. He was the son of a country solicitor and small landowner who, when the civil war broke out, served as a captain of horse in the parliamentary army. "I no sooner perceived myself in the world than I found myself in a storm," he wrote long afterwards, during the lull in the storm which followed the king's return. But political unrest does not seem to have seriously disturbed the course of his education. He entered Westminster school in 1646, and passed to Christ Church,…
Sunday, 29 July 2012 22:37

Jean-Jacques Rousseau : Men of Ideas

Written by
a. Traditional Biography Jean-Jacques Rousseau was born to Isaac Rousseau and Suzanne Bernard in Geneva on June 28, 1712. His mother died only a few days later on July 7, and his only sibling, an older brother, ran away from home when Rousseau was still a child. Rousseau was therefore brought up mainly by his father, a clockmaker, with whom at an early age he read ancient Greek and Roman literature such as the Lives of Plutarch. His father got into a quarrel with a French captain, and at the risk of imprisonment, left Geneva for the rest of his…
Cyprian Ekwensi, Jagua Nana. (New York: Fawcett Premier Book, 1961), 207 Pages. A Book Review By Ozodi Osuji Yesterday, July 26, 2012, around 6PM, I went to a used book store to see if there are books that I could buy and read. I went to the section on Afro-Americans and browsed. Guess what I saw? I saw Cyprian Ekwensi's book, Jaguar Nana. I bought it (as well as other books). I quickly rushed home and started reading it. I did not go to sleep until I was done with it. I decided to write a review of the book…
Dr. Omolade Adunbi is a political anthropologist and an Assistant Professor at the Center for Afroamerican and African Studies (DAAS), University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, U.S.A. In this interview with Chido Onumah, he examines corruption, the national question, and political violence in Nigeria amongst other national issues. •What is your assessment of the current situation in Nigeria? Nigeria is in a state of rot. A rot caused by being held hostage by a cabal that is bent on destroying the country. A lens through which to see Nigeria is that of a sick person who suddenly found himself in…
Jacob Carruthers, Intellectual Warfare. (Chicago: Third World Press, 1999)310 Pages. A Book Review By Ozodi Osuji I had asked a friend who is in the know about African American Studies at American Universities to recommend ten books that he felt that anyone interested in the field ought to read. He gave me a list and ranked them in order of importance. I read each and reviewed it for those who might want to read it, too. I have just got to Jacob Caruthers book, Intellectual warfare. I must confess that because I read it last I read it without much…
The term religion derives from Latin, religio. Religio is any effort to yoke one's self back to whatever one considers being one's source. Apparently, some human beings believe that they have a source (origin) outside this world and have always made efforts to reconnect themselves to that source. The source is generally construed as spirit, as opposed to our world which is a place of space, time and matter. Spirit is that which transcends matter. Since matter is a place of death and dying, of mortality, spirit is a place of immortality and eternity, permanence, changelessness, timelessness, spacelessness; spirit is…
Franz Fanon, Black Skin, White Mask (1952). New York: Grove Press. A Book Review By Ozodi Osuji From a political angle Franz Fanon's most important books are The Wretched of the Earth and A Dying Colonialism. However, I decided to review this particular book, Black Skin, White Mask, primarily because I noticed that many Africans have a tendency to talk about inferiority feeling in Africans. Generally, such Africans lob the term inferiority feeling at some Africans and do so as a put down. That would seem to suggest that they have healthy self-concept. However, when you come close to them…
Joy Degruy Leary, Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome. (Milwaukie, Oregon: Upton Press, 2005) 235 Pages. Book Review By Ozodi Osuji In the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association (2005 Edition) there is a nosological category called post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). This is a grab bag diagnosis because it encompasses symptoms found in other psychiatric disorders such as anxiety disorder and depression, even delusion disorder. The idea is that those who were exposed to stressful and or traumatic situations tend to exhibit certain symptoms. For example, children who were abused, housewives who were terrorized by abusive husbands, soldiers who…
Yosef Ben Jochannan, Africa, Mother of Western Civilization. (Baltimore, MD: Black Classic Press, 1971) 700 Pages. A Book Review By Ozodi Osuji It seems that many African people (in Africa and in the Americas) during the post second world war world were immensely affected by what they believed was Europe’s concerted effort to put Africans down. They perceived themselves attacked by the mere presence of Europe and went on a warpath to defend their selves. Africans are a proud people; colonialism induced subordinate relationship between Africans and Europeans pricked Africans egos, pride and vanity; they felt narcissistic injury; in fact,…
Carter G. Woodson, The Mis-Education of the Negro. (Chicago: African-American Images, 1933) 218 Pages. A Book Review By Ozodi Osuji Dr. Woodson (1875-1950) is an interesting man; interesting because he was born shortly after slavery ended in the United States and still he managed to give himself a world class education (he was the second black man, after W.E.B Dubois, to obtain a doctorate degree from Harvard University and like Dubois he, too, studied in Europe, Paris, France, and travelled extensively in Africa and other parts of the world). Dr. Woodson was very cosmopolitan from his extensive travels around the…
Cheikh Anta Diop, The African Origin of Civilization. (Chicago: Lawrence Hill Books, 1974) 318 pages. A Book Review By Ozodi Osuji Beginning during his student days at Paris, France, in the 1940s, Professor Diop was obsessed by the desire to prove to a skeptical world that Africans had great civilizations and, indeed, that they initiated human civilizations. Apparently, he had imbibed the self-serving propaganda by racist white scholars that Africans did not have any civilization of note and therefore cannot be expected to mount a civilization. The implicit message in this propaganda is that Africans ought to be ruled by…
This book was originally published in 1970. Thus, it preceded Chancellor Williams Destruction of Black Civilization (published initially in 1974). The two books covered the same subjects. If I had known that they were dealing with the same topics, I would have written a review of this book before the Destruction of Black Civilization. This is because doing justice to this book means repeating what I said in the destruction of black civilization. I do not like to repeat myself. Therefore, I urge the reader to read either book for they are really covering the same terrain. Mr. Jackson lived…
Chancellor Williams, The Destruction of Black Civilization. (Chicago: Third World Press, 1987) 384 Pages. A book Review By Ozodi Osuji Professor Chancellor Williams (1898-1992) taught history at Howard University, Washington DC. USA. In this book he was a man on a mission, not just a scholar who in a detached and dispassionate manner delineated a phenomenon without injecting his opinion into what he described. Such unsympathetic and impersonal scholarship would not do for Dr. Williams; he was a man who felt wronged and was out to correct that wrong and was not about to not let his feelings known by…
Betty J. Eadie (1992). Embraced by the light. Placerville, CA: Gold Leaf Press. Book Review by Ozodi Thomas Osuji First, I will summarize the book and thereafter examine the implication of the reality or lack thereof of life existing after we die. The story is that in 1973 thirty one years old Betty J. Eadie, an American woman of mixed Irish and Indian heritage had a near death experience. She had had seven children and decided to have a hysterectomy so as not to have other children and went to a hospital to have that operation. The operation went well…
Tuesday, 08 May 2012 06:58

Biography of Nnamdi Azikiwe

Written by
Nnamdi Azikiwe (1904-1996) was one of the foremost Nigerian and West African nationalists and the first president of Nigeria. Nnamdi Azikiwe was born on Nov. 16, 1904, of Ibo parents in Zungeru, Northern Nigeria, where his father worked as a clerk in the Nigerian Regiment. His parents gave him the name Benjamin, but he later changed it to Nnamdi. He attended school in Onitsha, Lagos, and Calabar. In 1921, when he discontinued his secondary school education, he was fluent in the languages of the three major ethnic groups of Nigeria--the Hausas, the Ibos, and the Yorubas--a major asset for the…
Tuesday, 08 May 2012 06:54

Biography of Abubakar Tafawa Balewa

Written by
Alhaji Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa (1912-1966) was the first prime minister of independent Nigeria, serving from 1957 to 1966. Abubakar Tafawa Balewa was born in Tafawa Balewa, North East State, Nigeria. Unlike the majority of Northern Nigerian political leaders, he was of humble background, his father having been a client to a district head. After attending Katsina Teacher Training College (1928-1933), he was a teacher and later headmaster of the Bauchi Middle School. He studied at the London University Institute of Education (1945-1946), where he received a teacher's certificate in history. During World War II Tafawa Balewa had become interested…
Tuesday, 08 May 2012 06:42

Biography of Ladoke Akintola

Written by
Samuel Ládòkè Akíntọ́lá or “S.L.A.”was born in Ògbómòsó on July 6, 1910. He was a politician and who was renowned for his great oratory skills. He held the title of the highly revered Aare Ona Kakanfo XIII of Yorubaland. Chief Akintola was a teacher in the 1930s and early 1940s. He left teaching to study public administration and law in England and returned to Nigeria in 1950’s a qualified lawyer. Upon his return, he teamed up with other educated Nigerians from the Western Region to form the Action Group (AG) under the leadership of Chief Obafemi Awolowo. As the deputy…
Sunday, 06 May 2012 09:03

Biography of Sam Walton

Written by
Sam Walton was a man who took chances, never said never, and kept on fighting the odds. He was like no other man in this world. All through his life he has fought an up hill battle and in the end he won. Sam Walton was a leader not a follower. Sam Walton grew up during the depression and knew that hard work and thrift were a way of life. Sam was described as to be industrious, always trying to get the most out of money, and had a burning ambition to succeed. This is all apparent by: how he…
Sunday, 06 May 2012 09:01

Biography of Robert Woodruff

Written by
Born in Columbus, Georgia, on December 6, 1889, Robert Winship Woodruff was the son of Ernest Woodruff, who later became a prominent businessman in Atlanta. Robert Woodruff was educated at Georgia Military Academy and attended Emory University from 1908 to 1910. In the latter year he became a machinist's apprentice and then salesman at General Fire Extinguisher Company. Having proven himself in this position, his father hired him as a salesman and buyer for his Atlantic Ice Company in 1911. A couple of years later young Woodruff began negotiating with Walter White, head of White Motor Company, to purchase a…
Sunday, 06 May 2012 08:51

Biography of Walt Disney

Written by
Born December 5, 1901, in Chicago, Illinois, Walt Disney started a small animation studio in 1922 where he and a partner made one and two-minute animated advertising films for distribution to local movie theatres. By the1930s, he forayed into feature-length cartoons. Disneyland opened in 1955, and Walt Disney World, which was under construction at the time of his death, opened in 1971. (born December 5, 1901, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.—died December 15, 1966, Los Angeles, California) American motion-picture and television producer and showman, famous as a pioneer of animated cartoon films and as the creator of such cartoon characters as Mickey…
Sunday, 06 May 2012 08:43

Biography of Alfred P. Sloan

Written by
Alfred P. Sloan Jr. was one of the most influential executives in twentieth century American manufacturing. As chief executive officer, president, and chairman of the board for the automaker General Motors (GM) over several important decades, Sloan was responsible for implementing strategies and practices that helped GM emerge as one of the most successful American companies of the century. In 1998, over 30 years after Sloan's death, GM still held the number one position in American business, leading Fortune magazine's list of the Top 500 American enterprises. Personal Life Sloan was born in New Haven, Connecticut in 1875, the son…
Sunday, 06 May 2012 08:37

Biography of J.P. Morgan

Written by
John Pierpont Morgan was born April 17, 1837, in Hartford, Connecticut. After working for his father, he started his own private banking company in 1871, which became J. P. Morgan & Co. His company was so powerful that even the U.S. government looked to the firm for help with the depression of 1895. The government later filed suit against the company over concerns about monopolies. Profile Financier, art collector, and philanthropist. Born on April 17, 1837, in Hartford, Connecticut. Son of a banker, Morgan went into the family business and became one of the most famous financiers in the history…
Saturday, 05 May 2012 05:25

Biography of John D. Rockefeller

Written by
John D. Rockefeller, an American industrialist (a person who owns or oversees an industrial corporation) and philanthropist (a person who works to help mankind), founded the Standard Oil Company, the University of Chicago, and the Rockefeller Foundation. Childhood John Davison Rockefeller was born on July 8, 1839, in Richford, New York, the second of six children. His father owned farm property and traded in many goods, including lumber and patent medicines. His mother, who was quite the opposite of his father's fun-loving ways, brought up her large family very strictly. After living in Oswego, New York, for several years, the…
Saturday, 05 May 2012 05:18

Biography of Andrew Carnegie

Written by
Andrew Carnegie was born on November 25, 1835, in Dunfermline, Scotland. After moving to the United States, he worked a series of railroad jobs. By 1889 he owned Carnegie Steel Corporation, the largest of its kind in the world. In 1901 he sold his business and dedicated his time to expanding his philanthropic work, including the establishment of Carnegie-Mellon University in 1904. Early Life Industrialist and philanthropist. Born on November 25, 1835, in Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland. Although he had little formal education, he grew up in a family that believed in the importance of books and learning. The son of…