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The Western Concept of Individualism and Society Encounters Ghana

A Social Philosophical Perspective

Rev. Dr. John Doe Dormah

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Geisteswissenschaften, Kunst, Musik / Philosophie


This work centers on how the Western concept of individualism as a social philosophical thought system has and continues to influence the individual in the Ghanaian society today. The work concentrates on the impact of this concept of the individual in his society in so far as social, political, economic, religious life are concerned. The ‘individual,’ as it is conceived here, is defined according to the definition of the new Oxford dictionary, referring to “the single human being distinct from a group, a class, or a family.” This work brings into consideration the welfare of the individual, which is being neglected in Ghana today. The work starts with a dialectical development of the concept of the individual from late antiquity through to the period after the Enlightenment. The purpose of this chapter is to see the philosophy behind the individual as the most important object of nature. It continues with individualism as a philosophical concept and how the individual’s social, political, economic, religious life are affected. Attention is also given to Ghana to see the concept of the individual and its relationship to family life, society, economic prosperity, the transcendental, morality, and life after death. Ghana’s encounter with the West and the impact of this encounter on the individual and his society are also discussed. Finally, there is a look at the situation as it is today and what schools of thought or camps exist and the ideas that are being proposed to give value to the individual as a citizen of Ghana. This is a piece that is recommended for all because it encompasses all there is to know about the individual, and it brings out the real meaning of an individual.

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