World Philosophy Day at UNESCO has been celebrated every year since 2002 on the third Thursday in November. By proclaiming a World Philosophy Day, the Member States of UNESCO at its 33rd General Conference in 2005 underlined the beneficial influence of this Day on the promotion of the teaching of philosophy, absent from the study programs. in many countries and which occupies both an uncertain and weak place among others.
By contributing to the maintenance of this tradition, UNESCO collaborated with the School of Human Sciences of the University of Dar es Salaam in the organization of a conference on the theme “Philosophy in Tanzania Today: Achieving the heart of political and socio-economic concerns â. The conference brought together philosophers and experts to reflect on the pluralism of the issues attracted by the main theme; notably from a critical reflection on what could be “an ethically relevant concept of democracy”, to the theorization of social justice from a religious point of view, including “Tanzanian women, economic justice and rights perspectives â. The conference also allowed experts to question and self-criticize “The place of philosophy in Tanzanian intellectual training” and also to explore the opportunity to “Replace monopolies with impact rewards”, among some of the themes addressed by this conference.
This one-day symposium featured keynote speeches such as those by Professor William AL Anangisye, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Dar Es Salaam, as well as Dr Rose Upor, Director of the College of Human Sciences of the University of Dar Es Salaam.
Organized during the Organization’s 41st General Conference, the conference contributed to the ‘global philosophical relay race’ that UNESCO was supporting, with a series of philosophical webinars in all regions, addressing topics as diverse as’ The science, indigenous knowledge and the pandemic â(Asia and the Pacific),â Religion and Enlightenment in times of crisis: a relation of continuity or discontinuity? Exemplified in the inequality between men and women â(Arab States),â Covid and endogenous responses: philosophical perspectives â(Africa),â Philosophy in times of social crisis â(LAC) andâ Epistemological, social and ethical issues of interdisciplinarity and Plurality of knowledge âfor the Europe and North America region.
âUNESCO has always been closely linked to philosophy, which is defined as a ‘School of freedom’. Through critical questioning, philosophy gives meaning to life and action in international, regional and notional contexts. The link between philosophy and UNESCO stems from the inquiry into the possibility and conditions necessary for the establishment of lasting peace and security in the world. recalled Mr. Ngandeu Ngatta Hugue, Head of the Social and Human Sciences Sector at the UNESCO Regional Office for East Africa
The agenda of the Day called upon the intellectual work of the philosopher, in dialogue with other disciplines of the human and social sciences, to contribute to institutional responses to the challenges of social transformations. The event also honored the winners of an essay competition held prior to the celebration of the Day to instill and encourage the participation of young people in philosophical discussions in order to further shape their societies and communities.
This celebration allowed UNESCO to fulfill its role of catalyst of ideas and of meeting place and reflection, while enhancing, alongside other human and social sciences, the function of questioning and criticism of the philosophical discipline. .