Q.) Why is it difficult for Africans to understand themselves as persons after colonialism and post-colonialism?
It was difficult for Africans to understand themselves as persons after colonialism and post-colonialism because of Islam and Christianity.In the 17th Century, followers of Islam and Christianity saw the people of Africa as, "inferior and primitive" and in need of change, and started to interlock their own beliefs for that of the Yoruba and other African people.Well, by the middle of the 20th Century Islam and Christianity converted almost four fifths of the Yoruba people to either religion, thus leaving their own religion and beliefs they were raised on.For example, Olodumare became God or Allah, Esu became the devil, orisas became archangels, and so on and so on.
To justify the colonization of Africa for its raw materials, Europeans created a body of ideas concerning the essence of the African people.This idea was relatively called ethnology, and it thus regarded the African people, culture, history and essence as inferiority, inhumanness, backwardness, the traditional, paganism. As the Europeans thought of themselves as the highest and most civilized group of people ever to walk God's green Earth.When pitching that scheme to a bunch of "uncivilized" people, who wouldn't want to convert.
So, in answering the question for today of it being difficult in recognizing oneself as a person, the answer is yes.After being converted to a different religion, one would have a change in code, canon, and creed, and by about 400 years of this change, it would be quite difficult to understand oneself as a person according to the standards of your ethnical/ racial tradition.It just so happens that the Africans were so influenced by outside sources, and thus accepting them, that they forgot "where they came from", what their past was, an who they were as individua