The Living Archive


Umuntu Ngumntu Ngabantu:

“I am because we are and we are because I am.”

Ubuntu as a philosophical principle has its origins in South Africa. The word comes from Zulu and Xhosa. A rough translation of the Ubuntu principle is “humanity towards others” or also “the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity”. As a concept, it forms the basis of an idea of social coexistence and shared values.

Ubuntu has spread throughout Africa and beyond in the African diasporas. 

There is no Ubuntu without community, commonality, or empowerment. In our archive, Ubuntu stands for just that: a shared space, full of relations, connections, togetherness and shared learning.

“Ubuntu speaks particularly about the fact that you can’t exist as a human being in isolation. It speaks about our interconnectedness. (…) We think of ourselves far too frequently as just individuals, separated from one another, whereas you are connected and what you do affects the whole World.”
– Archbishop Desmond Tutu