African Universities teaching International Law through Fela Kuti's Revolutionary Music

qz.com

International law in African universities is still taught within a rigid Eurocentric context which serves up its curriculums that excludes the diplomatic interactions between and among pre-colonial African Empires, especially as it relates to trade, conflict resolution and recognition of statehood. These exclusions have raised the importance of decolonizing the teaching and understanding of international law, as scholars use the music of Fela Kuti to educate on international law and history of corruption. 

Fela was able to use his radicalism and eloquence to expose this unjust order of things, including issues such as illicit financial flows, the marginalization of Africa on the world stage and the masking of Eurocentric values and opinions as “universal” standards. Two of his songs “International Thief Thief” and “Beast of No Nation" are particularly relevant to the critical teaching of international law. Both reflect issues raised by critical movements, such as the Third World Approaches to International Law, a network of scholars who explore the inherent contradictions and inequality of the global system. 

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