Pencum WARC (WARC Forum) : « La Culture au début et à la fin du Développement». Cette assertion Senghorienne est-elle toujours d’actualité? / Culture at the beginning and at the end of Development.

Is this statement from late poet-president Senghor still applicable?

In his life as teacher, poet and president, President Senghor was certain of the truthfulness and unfailing necessity of « rootedness and openness » in other words, to keep or recapture one’s identity one has first to know himself before opening up to the others. Negritude, the cultural, political and artistic movement he founded with Cesaire and Damas made it as its mission to make millions black cultural flowers to bloom and blossom all over the world. According to them, development would only come, once all africans and all black people on the continent and in the Diaspora had reconciled themselves with the true virtues of their cultures in order to stand on firm ground and negotiate the sinuous paths of development.

Even if some of the speakers lamented the foreign and western elements of Senghor’s model of development, the majority of them agreed that culture should always be integrated in the shaping of global development policies.

The panel, chaired by Professor Abdoulaye Elimane Kane, philosopher and former minister of culture in the Senegalese government, included Professor Alioune Badiane, painter, art critic and former director of the Dakar Fine Arts school, Dr Youma Fall, communication expert, former director of the International Francophony Organisation, Professor Youssou Mbargane Guissé, philosopher/anthropologist and Professor Bado Ndoye, philosopher at UCAD.

The event was attended by 94 people (in-person and Youtube) who contributed to the discussions.