A Critique of Traditional Igbo and Yoruba Moral Perspectives on Evil

Marcel Ikechukwu Sunday Onyibor, Tayo Raymond Ezekiel Eegunlusi, Tayo Raymond Ezekiel Eegunlusi


Evil and its moral consequences are problematic as far as human societies are concerned, whether primitive or civilised. As humans experience or cope with the reality of evil in its various forms in daily existence, every cultural group finds ways of explaining and contending with it in its world view. Perspectives on the existence of evil are as real in Africa as they are in other parts of the world. Going by this, Africans have reflected on questions concerning what is evil culturally and religiously, both which cannot be detached from moral viewpoints on evil. Despite the influences of foreign cultures as Christianity and Islam, certain primordial convictions endured in Igbo and Yoruba cultures. As its objective, this article explores the moral issues arising from their traditional cultural perspective on evil, especially as relating to the existence of evil and moral responsibility. To achieve this objective, the article is woven around the following research questions: What are the distinctive Igbo and Yoruba traditional perceptions of evil in their world views? How do these affect considerations of moral responsibility? Methodologically, the paper applies philosophical argumentation and analysis in interrogation of the issues involved in its objectives.


Destiny; Evil; Freewill; Igbo; Morality; Moral Responsibility; Yoruba

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/10966


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