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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Intellectual poverty and theory building in African mass communication research
Authors:M'Bayo, Ritchard TambaISNI
Sunday, OloruntolaISNI
Amobi, IfeomaISNI
Periodical:Journal of African Media Studies (ISSN 1751-7974)
Geographic term:Africa
Subjects:media and communication studies
Abstract:Among communication researchers the value of both the American and Europeans traditions is widely recognized. However, in the wake of the debates among communication scholars in the late 1970s and early 1980s African communication scholars started to take a closer look at their own historical and cultural perspectives within the study of communication. These scholars lamented the paucity of authentic African theoretical perspectives. All human communication behaviour is grounded in culture. Hence, authentic African communication theories attempt to explain such behaviour from the African cultural context. African communication researchers so far engaged more in 'reactive scholarship' than in original theory building and relied largely on Eurocentric theories to explain African realities. This study seeks to assess what progress has been made towards theory building among African communication scholars, and to determine whether such efforts still remain largely 'reactive', consisting mainly of criticisms of Eurocentric models and theories. The data reveals that after 30 years of debate on the ferment in communication research, there is still a gaping hole in African communication research, one that is devoid of authentic African communication theories that reflect the cultural, linguistic and social cleavages of African society. Bibliogr., sum. [Journal abstract, edited]