An Introduction to African Politics (3rd Edition) by Alex Thomson

By Alex Thomson

The 3rd version of An advent to African Politics is still the right textbook for these new to the examine of this attention-grabbing continent. It will get to the center of the politics of this a part of the realm, tackling questions equivalent to: How is sleek Africa nonetheless encouraged by way of its colonial earlier? How do powerful ethnic identities at the continent impact executive? Why has the army been so influential? Why do African states have such hassle dealing with their economies? How does African democracy range from democracy within the West?

The result's a textbook that identifies the basic good points of African politics, permitting scholars to understand the ordinary political styles that experience ruled this continent for the reason that independence.

Features and advantages of the 3rd variation:

* Thematically organised, with person chapters exploring matters akin to colonialism, ethnicity, nationalism, faith, social category, ideology, legitimacy, authority, sovereignty and democracy.
* Identifies key recurrent topics resembling the aggressive relationships among the African nation, its civil society and exterior interests.
* comprises necessary boxed case stories on the finish of every bankruptcy, together with: Kenya, Tanzania, Nigeria, Botswana, Côte d’Ivoire, Uganda, Somalia, Ghana, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zimbabwe.
* each one bankruptcy concludes with keywords and definitions, in addition to questions and recommendation on additional reading.
* Illustrated all through with photographs of significant political figures, and key moments in African history.
* very important phrases and ideas are defined in a transparent and obtainable demeanour and supported by way of modern examples.

This improved, absolutely revised and up-to-date version is still the correct gateway for college students looking to make feel of the dynamic and various political platforms which are a characteristic of this attention-grabbing a part of the area.

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Additional resources for An Introduction to African Politics (3rd Edition)

Example text

More recent academic thought, however, considers the underdevelopment thesis too polemic. Although most scholars agree that exploitation and expropriation held back potential African development to a degree, they argue that the colonial economic experience was not entirely negative for Third World countries. The African continent prior to imperial rule, for example, was not on the brink of economic ‘take-off ’. Population densities were relatively stable, and there were no major technological breakthroughs imminent.

These traditional leaders were also left to run their jurisdiction largely as they saw fit, as long as colonial interests were not compromised. This method of ‘indirect rule’ was, again, colonialism on the cheap. The state elite was not just composed of traditional leaders, however. As time progressed, a younger African elite began to emerge. These individuals also gained their position from their proximity to state power, but their source of social mobility was not necessarily traditional authority.

African labour was an obvious target. Colonial laws and tax systems were devised to force peasants from their subsistence farming, pushing them into employment in mines, on the commercial plantations, or growing cash crops to be exported to the West. The colonial authorities, however, did not pay African labour the wages enjoyed by European workers. Even taking into account the vast gap in standards of living, a worker on the African continent was still paid below the level of his or her subsistence needs.

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