Google’s Doodle today is in honor of Ghanaian Philosopher Anton Wilhelm Amo. The Doodle illustrated by Berlin-based guest artist Diana Ejaita, celebrates Ghanaian-German philosopher, writer, and academic Anton Wilhelm Amo— widely credited as one of Europe’s first African-born university students and professors as well as one of the 18th century’s most notable Black philosophers. On this day in 1730, Amo received the equivalent of a doctorate in philosophy from Germany’s University of Wittenberg.
Amo was born around 1703 near the town of Axim on Africa’s Gold Coast (now Ghana). Though the circumstances of his relocation are unclear, Amo grew up in Amsterdam, where he was given the name Anton Wilhelm by the family he lived with. Amo began his university studies in 1727 and two years later completed his first dissertation: a legal and historical argument against European slavery.
Amo published work across a variety of disciplines from philosophy to psychology and established himself as a renowned Enlightenment thinker. He went on to teach at a number of German universities, and also found time to master seven languages during his lifetime. An influential champion for the cause of abolition, Amo ultimately became embattled by racism and opposition to his beliefs. In 1747, he sailed back to present-day Ghana, where he remained for the rest of his life.
In honor of Amo’s legacy, the Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg erected a statue in his likeness in 1965. In August 2020, Berlin announced plans to name a street after him in the city’s Mitte district.
Click on the comment box below and leave us your thoughts. Thank you