New Journal: Journal of Contemporary African Philosophy

Journal of Contemporary African Philosophy

5 Leinster Road, Scottsville, Pietermaritzburg, 3201

P.O. Box 100 150, Scottsville, 3209

KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

Tel: [033] 345 2241 Fax: [033] 345 2246


Dear colleagues*,

in the name of my esteemed colleague Prof Bernard Matolino, I am happy to announce this new journal – Journal of Contemporary African Philosophy – as well to invite you to submit articles to the journal. The distinguishing mark of this journal is its interest in the formulation and presentation of African philosophy in a contemporary form that directs the field into the future. The journal is interested in contributions that specifically link philosophy to the contemporary needs of Africa (from philosophy) as well as contributions that are imaginative in their attempt at shaping African philosophical discourse beyond affirmations of its existence. With its myriad branches and competencies, African philosophy can contribute to the well-being of this continent through a rigorous reflection of our current state, how we got here, and most importantly how we can map a new direction from here.

While it is not possible to prescribe how a discipline or field has to unfold, this journal seeks to further reflections on the purpose and use of philosophy in the daily grind that ordinarily we go through. While philosophy is mostly understood as an abstract concern, the journal believes that to be just but one form of understanding. There is an alternative understanding of philosophy, and the philosopher, as also involved in the affairs of everyday men and women. Such an awareness and involvement is not synonymous with abandoning the core concern of philosophy but is a mode of reflection that is useful for the here and now. Thus the journal encourages scholarship that shows the intersectionality of theorization and concern for the practical effect of philosophical speculation. African philosophy has always been comfortable with these two dichotomies. What the journal seeks to achieve, is to bring these dichotomies together for a contemporary expansion of African philosophy that will aid our understanding of present-day Africa both as an idea and as a lived-out experience.


The members of the editorial and administrative team are as follows:

Editor: Prof Bernard Matolino, associate professor, University of KwaZulu-Natal.

Assistant Editor:Isaac Mutelo, PhD candidate, University of KwaZulu-Natal.

Editorial Board Members:

1.      Prof Joseph C.A Agbakoba, Professor, University of Nigeria.

2.      Prof Kwame Anthony Appiah, Professor, New York University.

3.      Prof Simon Beck, Professor, University of the Western Cape.

4.      Prof Philippe Denis, Senior Professor, University of KwaZulu-Natal.

5.      Barry Hallen, Director of Southern Crossroads Academic.

6.      Prof Bruce Janz, Professor, University of Central Florida.

7.      Prof D.A. Masolo, Professor, University of Louisville.

8.   Dr Stan Muyebe, current Provincial of the Order of Preachers (Dominicans) in Southern Africa.

9.      Prof J. Obi Oguejiofor, Professor, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nigeria.

10.   Prof Mogobe Ramose, Professor, Sefako Makgatho University, South Africa.

Administrative Team: Moses Chanda, Guide Marambanyika, Mark S Mngomezulu and Isaac Mutelo

Instructions for authors

1) Where to send manuscripts

We require that all submissions be made by sending an email to with the manuscript file attached in Word format. Please include your name, contact information, and the title of your paper in your message. All submissions will be acknowledged by email, and all subsequent correspondence regarding the manuscript will be sent via email.


2) Format of manuscripts

Manuscripts may be submitted in a limited range of standard formats: doc. and docx.

The text file should be presented in the following order:

a. A short informative title that contains the major key words. The title should not contain abbreviations;

b. A short running title of less than 40 characters;

c. Abstract and keywords;

d. Main text;

e. Acknowledgements;

f. Literature Cited

Please provide an abstract of 200 words or fewer containing the major keywords summarizing the article.


3) Manuscripts quality

Typescripts must be carefully proof-read prior to submission so that referees do not have their time wasted in identifying and listing errors. The most common authorial error consists in failing to reconcile in-text citations with the final bibliography.

4) Length of the texts

Articles are at least 4500 words long. They are also normally no longer than 10 000 words (in each case, including notes, abstract, acknowledgements, and references). Longer pieces of exceptional significance will be considered, up to a maximum length of 15,000 words (including notes, abstract, acknowledgements, and references).


5) Citations

– The date used in the main text and footnotes should be that of the edition used. Anachronism and absurdity (such as ‘Kant 1979’) should be minimized, where possible, by using the original date of publication in citations (for example, ‘Moore 1903’ rather than the date of some later collection of essays) and indicating in the Bibliography the date of the edition actually cited (as, e.g., in the ‘Edited Text’ example shown below). References should be given in square brackets, in the text whenever possible. Footnotes should be substantive; those merely giving citations should be avoided.

– Substantial quotations (40 words or more) should be indented without quotation marks. Other quotations should be enclosed by single quotation marks. Double quotation marks should be used only in the following ways: as inner quotation marks within single quotation marks, for example, for quotations within quotations; and to enable the exact reproduction of quoted material (i.e. where a quoted author has himself used them). Closing punctuation should be shown outside the quotation marks unless it belongs to the quoted text. Be aware of the difference between an apostrophe (’) and a prime (′); don’t use the former as a substitute for the latter.

– Citations should appear in the text in the following forms: [author’s surname(s) year: page number(s) if any], unless the author’s name forms part of the sentence. Examples: ‘As Lycan [2001: 25–9] notices . . .’

‘Several authors have taken this view [Goldman 1994: 107; Velleman 1995; Black 2002: 159, 161–3].’ ‘A typical version of this argument can be found in Bloggs [2008: 257–64].’

– Note that there is no comma between author and date, and page numbers (if any) are set off from the date by a colon. Several works by an author in the same year should be distinguished by adding a lower case letter to the date, as [Jones 1999a: 23, 1999b]. On the use of ‘ibid.’, see below.

As to the form that should be taken by the citations within an article or a book review, here are some (fictional) examples:

— and that is that (see Jones [2006: 131]).

–and that is still that (see Jones [2006: 131]; Smith [2008]).

–and that is that [Jones 2006: 131]. Copyright Instruction for authors JOCAP

–and that is that [Jones 2006: 131, 2009: 45].

–and that is that [Jones 2006, 2009].

–and that is still that. For discussion, see Jones [2006] and Smith [2008].

– The curved parentheses are used when something is added to the pure citation, even if that ‘something’ is as little as an ‘e.g.’: thus, ‘(e.g. Jones [2006: 131])’. The square brackets are used for a pure citation: thus, ‘See, for example, Jones [2006] and Smith [2008].’

– Note that multiple-author citations within the article or review should be chronologically rather than alphabetically ordered:

–and that is still that [Jones 2006; Smith 2008; Annan 2009].

– Do not use ‘&’ in multi-author citations.

– Some further citation details:

‘ibid.’ is not italicised

‘ibid.’ on its own is used to denote the same citation as the immediately preceding one

‘ibid.: 55’ (for example) directs the reader to p. 55 at the same source as was denoted in the preceding citation

Page numbering. Correct: 10–19, 51–5, 100–1, 110–19. Incorrect: 10–9, 51–55, 100–101, 110–119, 110–9

Some abbreviations. Correct: ‘Murgatroyd [1951: ch. 4]’ and ‘Wooster [1947: sec. 5]’. Incorrect: ‘Murgatroyd [1951: Ch. 4]’ and ‘Wooster [1947: Sec. 5]’

Uses of ‘e.g.’:

Correct: ‘see, e.g., Smith [1951]’; ‘(e.g. Smith [1951])’.

Incorrect: ‘see e.g. Smith [1951]’; ‘(e.g., Smith [1951])’

(And the same thinking applies to ‘i.e.’.)

Internal references:

‘as we will see (section 3)’ is correct, while ‘as we will see (§

3)’ is incorrect.

6) Bibliography

A final list, in alphabetical order by author (and listing all authors as part of an entry when the entry is multi-authored), and titled ‘REFERENCES’, must be included, and items must be formatted according to the following examples.


Black, Tim 2002. A Moorean Response to Brain-in-a-Vat Scepticism, Australasian Journal of Philosophy 80/2: 148–63.

Stevens, G. 2004. From Russell’s Paradox to the Theory of Judgement: Wittgenstein and Russell on the Unity of the Proposition, Theoria 70/1: 28–61.

Weinberg, J.M., S. Nichols, and S. Stich 2001. Normativity and Epistemic Intuitions, Philosophical Topics 29/1&2: 429–60.

[Note that, to aid searching, both volume and issue numbers must be supplied for journal citations. Note also that an author’s given name(s) may be listed either in full or just via initial letter(s). Do not use ‘&’ for multi-author listings; use ‘and’ instead. When an author is listed more than once in a given bibliography, his/her name must be used each time; do not replace it with dashes, such as in the second or third listings of the name. And when an author appears both singly and as a lead co-author, the former should precede the latter in the list.]


Devitt, Michael and Kim Sterelny 1987. Language and Reality: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Language, Oxford: Blackwell.

Foley, Richard 2012. When Is True Belief Knowledge?, Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Hetherington, S. 2011. How To Know: A Practicalist Conception of Knowledge. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.


Beall, J.C. 2007. Truth and Paradox: A Philosophical Sketch, in Philosophy of Logic, ed. Dale Jacquette, Amsterdam: North-Holland: 325–410.

Jones, Karen 2005. Moral Epistemology, in The Oxford Handbook of Contemporary Philosophy, ed. Frank Jackson and Michael Smith, Oxford: Oxford University Press: 63–85.


Ludlow, P., Y. Nagasawa, and D. Stoljar, eds, 2004. There’s Something About Mary: Essays on Phenomenal Consciousness and Frank Jackson’s Knowledge Argument, Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press.


Hume, D. 1747 (1974). A Treatise of Human Nature, ed. P.H. Nidditch, Oxford: Clarendon Press.


Candlish, Stewart 2007. The Identity Theory of Truth, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Spring 2007 Edition), ed. Edward N. Zalta, URL =

Note that titles of journal articles and chapters in books are not in quotes. Titles of books and journals are given in italics. Volume and issue numbers of journals are given in Arabic numerals. Both the city of publication and the publisher are given for books. Where more than one work by the same person is listed, the author’s name must be repeated in the list rather than replaced by dashes (this is, again, to aid searching), and the items listed must be in chronological order, except that alphabetical order trumps chronological, so that co-authored items always follow single-authored items by the same person: e.g. ‘Bloggs, J. and A.N. Other 1984’ follows, rather than precedes, ‘Bloggs, J. 1993’ (but precedes, rather than follows, ‘Bloggs, J. and M. Zitwell 1979). Note that when an author has two or more initials, these are not to be separated by spaces: hence ‘A.N. Other’ is correct, while ‘A. N. Other’ is not.

The most common authorial error, even at the final stages of preparation, consists in failing to reconcile in-text citations with the final bibliography.   

*Written by an identified author at/contributor to PhilEvents

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