A comprehensive, systematic account of human development which is
sensitive to the needs, interests and ecologies of nonwestern
cultures and individuals is provided in this unique volume. The
importance and value of the sociocultural milieu in shaping the
growth and development of children is emphasized, and the author
asserts throughout that children do not grow and develop according
to the same patterns regardless of culture. The author describes
developmental psychology from the perspective of West Africa,
demonstrating how the local ecology and the resulting cultural
ideology lead to differing ways in which children are
conceptualized and socialized, and in turn how they develop. While
much of his case material is from Cameroon, Nsamenang draws
parallels with other parts of the Third World. The result is a
perspective which challenges the traditional wisdom of what
Nsamenang sees as a Eurocentric area of study, where knowledge has
largely been gleaned from studies which focus on affluent offspring
of highly-educated, mainly white, parents.
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