Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics

, Volume 38, Issue 2, pp 101–110 | Cite as

Giving voice to African thought in medical research ethics

  • Godfrey B. TangwaEmail author


In this article, I consider the virtual absence of an African voice and perspective in global discourses of medical research ethics against the backdrop of the high burden of diseases and epidemics on the continent and the fact that the continent is actually the scene of numerous and sundry medical research studies. I consider some reasons for this state of affairs as well as how the situation might be redressed. Using examples from the HIV/AIDS and Ebola epidemics, I attempt to show that the marginalization of Africa in medical research and medical research ethics is deliberate rather than accidental. It is causally related, in general terms, to a Eurocentric hegemony derived from colonialism and colonial indoctrination cum proselytization. I end by proposing seven theses for the critical reflection and appraisal of the reader.


Africa Culture Medical research Western hegemony Marginalization Ethics 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Yaounde 1YaoundéCameroon
  2. 2.Cameroon Bioethics Initiative (CAMBIN)YaoundéCameroon

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