Politics in Africa: A New Introduction
How did things go so wrong? Why has the continent lagged behind others in economic development despite its potential natural resources? Why are so many African states prone to conflict? And why has democracy been slow to take root in a majority of the countries? Covering everything from African economies to the role of the state, rural livelihoods to issues of gender, 'Politics in Africa' offers a fresh perspective in answering these questions, making the continent's problems more understandable, less wretched and even intensely hopeful.
Up-to-date, concise and provocative, this is indispensable reading for anyone interested in African politics.
undertake reforms or from the objective conditions of the economies not permitting the kind of adjustment being recommended. Despite nearly two and a half decades of adjustment policies, this debate remains largely unresolved. The only certainty, however, is that SAPs often have an immediate and, at times, detrimental impact on the welfare of the poorest members of society, especially as they affect food prices, costs of education and payment of medical services. Riley and Parfitt (1994) argue
Such a conclusion throws up a far wider and more complex set of relational processes, relating to trust, representation, voice and social capital in wider society. The power to be heard: representation and voice The preceding section highlights how the contribution of women to the economy, both productively and reproductively, is undervalued in Africa (as it continues to be globally). It is evident that efforts to increase women’s economic development are often only marginally successful given
has been made on building comprehensive systems of primary healthcare. The provision of holistic primary care is intrinsically linked to poverty, vulnerability and inequality. It has a crucial role to play in reducing both maternal and infant mortality. Therefore, the right to health is a deeply political question. As we have noted here, the burden currently falls on families ill equipped to meet it, and ill health all too commonly pushes people farther into poverty. Suggestions that private
post-coloniality that indelibly imbues insecurity. There are palpable feelings of a job left undone, of failed dreams of modernity, of frustration at the incompletion of the nation-state project, of self-serving ‘ethnicized’ governing apparatuses and of an uncaring and xenophobic outside world that subjugates and alienates the majority of Africans from their rightful place at the table of human and social development. In short, there is a lack of pride, trust and confidence in that most visible
in style and design, but colonialism in its different variations (see Table 1.1) was either direct or indirect rule with the norm being a mix of the two. Direct rule usually involved the breakdown of traditional structures of power and authority, which were replaced with rule by white European administrations whose officers were sent out from the metropole. Direct rule did not spread widely to the countryside except if there existed valuable mineral resources, such as in the Copperbelts of Zambia