Africa Works: Disorder as Political Instrument by Patrick ChabalHow do political systems in Africa work? Is the real business of politics taking place outside the scope of standard political analysis, in an informal or more personalised setting? How are the prospects for reform and renewal in African societies affected by the emerging elites? Is modernisation in Africa different? Are there within African countries social, political and cultural factors which aspire to the continuation of patrimony and conspire against economic development?
Relations of power between rulers and the ruled continue to inform the role of the state and the expectations of the newly emphasized civil society. The question of identity, the resurgence of ethnicity and its attendant tribal politics, the growing importance of African religions and the increasing resort to extreme and often ritualised violence in situations of civil disorder, point to a process of re-traditionalising in African societies
African Issues, edited by Alex de Waal
February 1999 192 pp 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 Index
Africa in International Politics External Involvement on the Continent Routledge Advances in Interna
Africa works : disorder as political instrument
Haven't read this book yet but it was recommended by a colleague as a good representation of a more optimistic perspective on political issues in contemporary Africa. Possibly useful in countering the patronizing mode of much Euro-American discourse about Africa. Africa Works : Disorder as Political Instrument. Patrick Chabal , Jean-Pascal Daloz. How do political systems in Africa work? Is the real business of politics taking place outside the scope of standard political analysis, in an informal, more-personalized setting? How are the prospect: for reform and renewal in African societies affected by the emerging elite?
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Jump to navigation. One of the most stimulating recent analyses of African realpolitik, this book joins the growing literature that challenges the premises underlying Western development assistance. Why have most African countries failed to develop, despite more than a decade of economic and political reforms tied to new aid infusions? Because, say Chabal and Daloz, the continent's informal but durable and culturally rooted "neopatrimonial" political systems do not depend on development in the Western sense -- and may even be threatened by it. As African leaders adapt to restrictions imposed by structural adjustment and declining law and order, they find ways to translate social disorder into patronage resources that shore up the loyalty of their client networks.
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