Kwame Nkrumah (Ghana) and Leopold Sedar Senghor (Senegal) belonged to the generation of western educated intellectuals who came of age at the height of colonialism and who developed ideas that informed the anti-colonial struggle. Nkrumah attended Catholic school in Ghana and then studied at Lincoln University (a Historically Black College) in Pennsylvania. He joined other African, Caribbean and African-American students, intellectuals, and activists at the 5th Pan-African Congress before returning to Ghana to lead the decolonization movement. Leopold Senghor, a Roman Catholic from a minority ethnic group in Senegal, went on to become the first president of Senegal. He went to Paris as a college student. Studied with French intellectuals and was held in a German prisoner of war camp during his military service in World War II. Following the war, Senghor joined with other poets and writers of the French Caribbean to develop Negritude. This black literary and cultural arts movement for the French speaking African Diaspora took its inspiration from the Harlem Renaissance. In their writing, Nkrumah and Senghor sought to articulate a new framework for African independence from European political, economic, and cultural over-rule.
Read Senghor, “The African Road to Socialism,” and Nkrumah, “Society and Ideology.” Write a 250 word post explaining what their writings say about how Senghor and Nkrumah envisioned the challenges facing African states after independence and the strategies that they argue would best serve their country and/or Africans generally. What stands out to you from their writings? What squares with you or leaves you with questions? In your answer, include two questions for class discussion