By Bate Besong
Paper Read During The Commemoration Of The 19th Anniversary Of The Passing Away Of Professor Bernard Nsokika Fonlon - Djeuga Palace Hotel, Yaounde,24th November 2005
WILLIAM FULBRIGHT has argued that literary agitation, like practical political instigation, which edges on dissent or rebellion is “an act of faith”. Accordingly, and, as I have already shown elsewhere, although Professor Bernard Nsokika Fonlon (a man who was so exceptionally handsome), was, an intellectual pillar of fire; a Prometheus among his peers; indeed, something of a twentieth century Aristotle, the Greek philosopher and classical biologist, his neo-classical treatise on literary composition have, neither, received accolades nor endorsement from me.
Professor Fonlon, however, using, his towering, super-human intellect, fulfilled, the noble revolutionary role of critical-activity in the identification and exposition of truth for the good of Cameroonian humanity. He agreed with the “Talented Tenth” garden variety scholar – I refer to the American philosopher, Dr. W.E.B du Bois- and the French existentialist thinker, Jean Paul Sartre – that the primary task of the intellectual as an agitator and instigator was the rehumanization of a dehumanized polity capable of undercutting the material foundations of social injustice thereby facilitating the realization of socialist democracy.