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Module Reading List

Africa in the Contemporary World, 2019/20, Semester 2
Dr Jorg Wiegratz
Tutor information is taken from the Module Catalogue

Key texts that will be referred to in the module include;

Tom Young (2010) Africa

Vishnu Padayachee ed.(2010) The political economy of Africa

Ray Bush (2007) Poverty and neoliberalism

Patrick Bond (2006) Looting Africa

Fred Cooper (2002) Africa Since 1940

James Ferguson (2006) Global shadows : Africa in the neoliberal world order

Bill Freund (1998) The Making of Contemporary Africa

Zack-Williams ed. (2002) Africa in Crisis

_______________(2011) Neo Liberal Africa

Alex Thomson 4th edition (2016) An introduction to African politics

Rita Abrahamsen ed (2013) Conflict & security in Africa

Nana Poku & Anna Mdee (2011) Politics in Africa : a new Introduction., Zed Books

George Ayittey (2005) Africa Unchained Chapter 1

Martin Meredith (2005) The State of Africa Chapter 35

Basil Davidson (1973) [2007] Black Star

Compare too the World Bank’s Africa site and recent debate about Aid effectiveness.,,contentMDK


and see, amongst other sites,

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Week One 

Seminar: Allocation of work and reading groups

Required Reading:

Tom Young (2010) Africa

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Week Two 

Lecture: Africa rising? Contours of current debates

This lecture reviews contemporary debate about development in Africa and especially the recent turn in the media and scholarship from ‘Afro-pessimism’ to a narrative of ‘Africa Rising’. It examines historical patterns of interaction between the continent and the global economy as well as exploring often problematic perceptions of Africa and Africans as seen from the global North.


Mkandawire, T. (2014). Can Africa Turn from Recovery to Development?.Current history.113(763),

Bush, R. (2013). ‘Making the 21st century its own: Janus faced African (under) development)’ in Afrika Focus:

Ian Taylor (2016) ‘Dependency redux: why Africa is not rising’ Review of African political economy. 43,147, 8-25

World Bank ‘Africa can end Poverty’ World Bank blog,

Ray Bush and Graham Harrison (2014) ‘New African Development?’ Review of African political economy., 41, 143 S December

Ndongo Samba Sylla (2014) From a marginalised to an emerging Africa? A critical analysis’ Review of African political economy., 41, 143 S December

A. Hoogvelt ‘Globalisation, Imperialism and Exclusion’ in Tunde Zack Williams ed 2002 Africa in Crisis

M Jerven, 2015, Africa : why economists get it wrong

Historical materialism. [Special Issue on Africa, vol 12:4 2004]

M Branko 2003 ‘The Two Faces of Globalisation: Against Globalisation as we know it’ World development. 31 4 pp667-83

Graham Harrison 2010 ‘The Africanization of Poverty: A retrospective on ‘Make Poverty History’’ in African affairs. 109.436, 391-408

Giovanni Arrighi ‘The African Crisis’ New left review. 15,5-36 2002

Jörg Wiegratz ‘Fake capitalism? The dynamics of neoliberal moral restructuring and pseudo-development: the case of Uganda’ in Review of African political economy. vol 37 no.124 June 2010 pp123-138

David Harvey (2003) ‘The “New” Imperialism: Accumulation by Dispossession’ in Leo Panitch and Colin Leys (eds) The new imperial challenge, Socialist Register 2004. London: Merlin

re Scrambling in Africa

Bond 2006

Chris Alden 2007 China in Africa

Cyril Obi 2010 ‘Oil as the ‘curse’ of conflict in Africa: peering through the smoke and mirrors Review of African political economy. vol 37, no.126,,contentMDK:20212477~menuPK:463304~pagePK:148956~piPK:216618~theSitePK:336930,00.html

A scramble for Africa, The economist.

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Week Three 

Traditions and Modernity – representation and understanding a continent

This session examines the debate about modernisation in Africa. Are there theoretical perspectives that explain political development and that grasp the intricacies of African social formations? And are there perspectives that also grasp the ways in which the continent has been unevenly incorporated into the world economy? Modernisation theory has offered a particular view of development and one that has been critiqued for being ahistorical but what, amongst other things, does that mean? Does this theory help countries in Africa deal with contemporary problems or does the debate about dependency and underdevelopment offer a more meaningful alternative to explaining the legacy of colonialism?

Binyavanga Wainaina (2012)

How not to write about Africa in 2012 – a beginner's guide

Questions for discussion:

Q1 what influence has modernization theory had in viewing Africa’s development problems? Can you evidence this with reference to the impact of colonial rule?

World Bank 2000 Can Africa claim the 21st Century and review by E Harsh in Africa recovery. October 2000

A Foster Carter 1976 ‘From Rostow to Gunder Frank: conflicting paradigms in the analysis of underdevelopment’  World development. 4,3,167-180

Mkandawire (1997) ‘The Social Sciences in Africa: Breaking Local Barriers and Negotiating International Presence’ African studies review. 40 2. pp15-36

G Harrison 2010 ‘The Africanisation of Poverty: A retrospective on ‘Make Poverty History’, African affairs. 109, 436, pp391-408

T Ranger ‘The invention of tradition in colonial Africa’ in E Hobsbawm and T Ranger (eds) 1983,The invention of tradition

T Young (2010) Africa ch 2

Mark Duffield (2014) ‘From immersion to simulation: remote methodologies and the decline of area Studies’ ROAPE 41, 143 S

Rita Abrahamsen 2013 ‘Blair’s Africa: The Politics of Securitisation & Fear’ in Conflict & security in Africa

Q2 How did colonialism justify itself?

Alison Ayers 2006 ‘Beyond the Imperial Narrative: African Political Historiography Revisited’ in B. Gruffydd Jones (ed.) Decolonizing international relations

T Young 2010 Africa

Bruce Gilley 2016, ‘Chinua Achebe on the positive legacies of colonialism’ African affairs. 115, (461)

A Thompson 2016 An Introduction to African Politics chapter2

Adam Hochschild 1998 King Leopold’s ghost: a story of greed, terror and heroism in Colonial Africa. Prologue and chapts 8&9

Joseph Conrad 1926 [1995] Heart of Darkness

Chinua Achebe 1983 An Image of Africa

Semakula M. Kiwanuka ‘Colonial policies and Administrations in Africa: the myth of the contrasts’ in African historical studies., 3,2,pp295-315 JSTOR

Alison Ayers 2009 ‘Imperial Liberties: Democratisation and Governance in the “New” Imperial Order’ Political studies., Vol. 57, Issue 1,

Q3 What does it mean to claim that African societies are capitalist? Is this an appropriate/useful framework?

See blogs on

Freund, B. (1998), “Tropical Africa: State, Class and Development” in The Making of Contemporary Africa,

Leys, C. (1996). The rise & fall of development theory. Chapter 8

Himbara, D. (1993). Myths and realities of Kenyan capitalism. Journal of modern African studies., 31(01), 93-107.

Kaplinsky, R. (1980). Capitalist accumulation in the periphery—the Kenyan case re‐examined. Review of African political economy.

Boone, C. (1990). The making of a rentier class: Wealth accumulation and political control in Senegal. The journal of development studies., 26(3), 425-449.

Bayart, J. F., & Ellis, S. (2000). Africa in the world: a history of extraversion, African affairs., 217-267.

Saul, J. S., & Leys, C. (1999). Sub-Saharan Africa in global capitalism. Monthly review., 51(3), 13.

Daloz, J. P. (2003). " Big Men" in Sub-Saharan Africa: How Elites Accumulate Positions and Resources. Comparative Sociology, 2(1), 271-285.

Q4 Does the notion of underdevelopment explain Africa’s position in the contemporary world?

R Bush 2007 Poverty and neoliberalism

Makki, F. (2015). Post-Colonial Africa and the World Economy: The Long Waves of Uneven Development. Journal of world-systems research [electronic resource]., 21(1).

W Rodney 1972 How Europe Underdeveloped Africa

Samir Amin ‘Underdevelopment and Dependence in Black Africa- Origins and Contemporary Forms’ Journal of modern African studies. 10,4,503-524 **JSTOR

Mark Duffield 2007 Ch4 Development, Security and Unending War

Amin, S. (2002). Africa: Living on the fringe. Monthly review., 53(10), 41.

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Week Four 

The Post colonial State: Authoritarianism and Spoils Politics?

This seminar examines the nature of the post-colonial state in Africa and identifies the structural characteristics that produce both stability and crisis. It is important to explore accounts for the rise and nature of authoritarian politics that goes beyond the pathologising of politics in Africa and which also examines why and how ethnic politics emerges. There is an interesting contrast in the overall interpretation of African politics offered in the work of Cooper (2002) Young (1994; 2004) and Mamdani (1996) in relation to how and in what way the state in Africa has been influenced by colonialism and its interaction with local forces

Questions for discussion:

Q1 How do you account for the main features of the post-colonial state in Africa? Is it different from the state in liberal democratic political systems?

Fantu Cheru 2002 African Renaissance chapter 2

B. Berman, ‘The Perils of Bula Matari: Constraint and Power in the Colonial State’, Canadian Journal of African Studies, 31: 3 (1997), pp. 556-570

Nii-K Plange ‘The Colonial State in Northern Ghana: The Political Economy of Pacification’ Review of African political economy. 11, 31, 29-43 B’ton West level 2 Politics A-0.01 REV

W Rodney ‘The colonial economy’ in A Adu Boahen ed Africa under colonial domination 1880-1935 Heinemann 1985 B’ton Main level 2 Modern History N-90 GEN

Copper, F "The recurrent Crisis of the Gatekeeper State" in Cooper, F Africa since 1940 : the past of the present Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

Crawford Young 1994 The African colonial state in comparative perspective

Crawford Young 2004 ‘The end of the post colonial state in Africa? Reflections on Changing African Political Dynamics’, in African affairs., 103, issue 410, 23-49

Jackson, R and C Rosberg (1982) “Why Africa’s weak states persist” World politics. vol 35, 1 pp 1-24

C Obi and S A Rustad 2011, Introduction: Petro violence in the Niger Delta – the complex politics of an insurgency, in C Obi and S Rustad eds, Oil and Insurgency in the Niger Delta

Q2 Why have most African states become increasingly authoritarian after independence?

Jackson, R.H. and Carl G. Rosberg (1984) “Personal Rule: Theory and Practice in Africa “ Comparative politics., Vol. 16, No. 4. pp. 421-442

Rita Abrahamsen 2013 Introduction: conflict & Security in Africa, in Conflict & security in Africa

J. Lonsdale & B. Berman, ‘Coping with the contradictions: the development of the colonial state in Kenya’, The journal of African history., 20, 4 (1979)

T Young 2010 Africa ch3&4

M. Szeftel, ‘Misunderstanding African politics: corruption and the governance agenda’, Review of African political economy. 25, 76 (1998), pp. 221-40

Frederick Cooper 2002 Africa since 1940 : the past of the present

Q3 What do you understand by corruption and spoils politics?

Bayart, J-F. (1993) ‘The politics of the belly’ in The state in Africa: the politics of the belly.

Berman, B. (1998) ‘Ethnicity, Patronage and the African State’, African affairs. 97: 305-341

Clapham, C. (ed.) (1982) Private patronage and public power: political clientelism in the modern state, London: Pinter. Especially chapters by Clapham and Medard

Schatzberg, M (1993) ‘Power, Legitimacy and 'Democratisation', Africa. Vol. 63

M. Szeftel, 2000,‘Clientelism, corruption and catastrophe’, Review of African political economy., 27, 85

A Beresford, 2015, ‘Power, Patronage and Gatekeeper politics in South Africa’ African affairs. 114 (455)

H Gray, 2015, ‘The Political Economy of grand corruption in Tanzania’ African affairs. 114 (456)

Musambayi Katumanga 2013, ‘A city under siege: Banditry…’ in Abrahamsen, Conflict & security in Africa

Michelle D’Arcy and A Cornell 2016, ‘Devolution and corruption in Kenya: Everyone’s turn to eat’ African affairs. 115, (459)

M Watts 2013, ‘Petro-Insurgency or Criminal Syndicate? Conflict and Violence in the Niger Delta’ in Abrahamsen ed Conflict & security in Africa

Giorgio Blundo and Jean-Pierre Olivier de Sardan with N. B. Arifari, M. T. Alou and M. Mathieu 2006 Everyday corruption and the state : citizens and public officials in Africa

J-F Bayart. S. Ellis & B. Hibou, The criminalization of the state in Africa

A.Mwenda & R. Tangri, 2001 ‘Corruption and cronyism in Uganda’, African affairs., 100 pp. 117-33

P Chabal 2010 Africa : the politics of suffering and smiling

Van de Walle, N (2003) ‘Presidentialism and clientelism in Africa's emerging party systems’, Journal of Modern African Studies., 41 : 297-321

Q4 How much weight would you give to a) colonial legacies, b) the role of foreign interests and the global political economy, and/or c) the role of African elites, in an explanation of why post-colonial African states have generally been characterised by authoritarianism and spoils politics?

Cyril Obi 2013, Oil as a ‘Curse’ of conflict in Africa…’ in Abrahamsen, Conflict & security in Africa

Chabal, P. and JP Daloz, (1999) chapter ‘The Political Instrumentalization of Disorder’ in Africa works: disorder as political instrument pp. 141-163

David Williams 2010 ‘Making a liberal state: ‘good governance’ in Ghana’ in Review of African political economy. vol 37, no 126, pp403-420

Jon Phillips et al 2016 ‘Sovereignty, the ‘resource curse’ and the limits of good governance: a political economy of oil in Ghana’ Review of African political economy., 43,147,26-42

M. Mamdani, Citizen and Subject: Contemporary Africa and the Legacy of Late Colonialism (1996)

C Allen ‘Understanding African Politics’, Review of African political economy. 65, pp301-320, 1995

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Week Five 

Debt, Development and Dependency? Africa and Neoliberal Agendas

This debate involves the need to explore a number of sub questions and to try and identify contrasting positions to explain, amongst other things;

Q1 What have been the causes of Africa’s economic crises?

Giovanni Arrighi ‘The African Crisis’ New left review. 15,5-36 2002

Peter Lawrence ‘The African tragedy: international and national roots, ch3 in Vishnu Padayachee ed. The political economy of Africa

Colin Leys ‘Confronting the African Tragedy’ New Left Review 204 March/April 1994 internet version,

*JS Saul and C Leys (1999) ‘Sub Saharan Africa in Global Capitalism’ Monthly Review

James Ferguson (2006) Global shadows : Africa in the neoliberal world order

G Ayittey Africa Unchained ch 1 & 3

Patric Bond, ‘Bankrupt Africa: Imperialism, Sub Imperialism and the Politics of Finance’, Historical materialism., 12.4.2004


Q2 What have been the social, economic and political consequences of the crisis?

Infrastructure crisis

Dave Sanders

Bond, P and Dor, G 2007 Uneven health outcomes and political resistance under residual neoliberalism in Africa. In: V.Navarro (ed), Neoliberalism, globalization, and inequalities : consequences for health and quality of life

Heather Deegan 2009 Africa Today ch7

Abrahamsen, R (2001) Disciplining democracy : development discourse and good governance in Africa

David Williams ‘Making a liberal state: ‘good governance’ in Ghana’ in Review of African political economy. vol37 no.126, Dec 2010 pp403-420

Q3 What have been some of the mainstream policies to address the crisis?

Harrison (2005) ‘Economic Faith, Social Project and a Misreading of African Society: The Travails of Neoliberalism in Africa’, Third world quarterly., 26 (8) and then look for country experiences at and


World Bank African poverty at the millennium : causes, complexities, and challenges World Bank World Development Reports 1997 – ‘the state in a changing world’ and 2002 ‘Building institutions for markets’; 2008 Agriculture; 2011 Conflict; 2012 Gender IMF Poverty reduction strategy papers

Morten Jerven 2015, Africa : why economists get it wrong

M Jerven 2016 ‘Research Note: Africa by numbers: reviewing the data base approach to studying African Economies, African affairs. 115 (459)

D Simon et al Structurally Adjusted Africa (1995) chapter 2

G Mohan et al Structural Adjustment chapters 1&2

Africa recovery.

Q4 What have been some of the African responses to the crisis?

Africa Progress Panel,

African peer review mechanism   

Thandika Mkandawire (2005) ‘The Global Economic Context’ in Ben Wisner et al eds Towards a New Map of Africa.

Lionel Cliffe, ‘African Renaissance? In Tunde Zack-Williams, Diane Frost and Alex Thomson Africa in Crisis

JO Adésinả, A Olukoshi and Yao Graham (2006) Africa and development challenges in the new millennium : the NEPAD debate

Thioub, I., Diop, M. C., & Boone, C. (1998). Economic liberalization in Senegal: shifting politics of indigenous business interests. African studies review., 41(02), 63-90.

‘Lagos Plan of Action for the Economic Development of Africa, 1980-2000’ Addis Ababa: OAU, 1979 reprint available at,

Hesphina Rukato 2010 Future Africa : prospects for democracy and development under NEPAD

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Week Six 


Begin work on developing an annotated bibliography for your research report. Assemble references and begin searches for the themes or country report that you might like to develop. Hand in the assembled bibliography for week 7

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Week Seven 

Primary Commodities: Agriculture and Natural Resources

We examine agriculture and natural resources, the two sectors which have since the colonial period made up the majority of African exports and which play a major role in African development and well-being.

Q1 What is the nature of African food insecurity?

Bernstein, H. (2010) Class dynamics of agrarian change ch4

Borras, S et al ‘The politics of biofuels, land and agrarian change: editors introduction’ and Ben White and A Dasgupta ‘Agrofuels capitalism: a view from political economy’, Journal of peasant studies. vol 37, 4, October, 2010

Conceição, P., Levine, S., Lipton, M., & Warren-Rodríguez, A. (2016). Toward a food secure future: Ensuring food security for sustainable human development in Sub-Saharan Africa. Food policy., 60, 1-9.

Maloney, T. and J Smith 2010 ‘Briefing: Biofuels, Food Security, And Africa’ in African affairs. 109/436, pp489-498

Moore, J. (2010) ‘The End of the Road? Agricultural Revolutions in the Capitalist World-Ecology, 1450-2010, Journal of agrarian change. vol10, 3

Ngcoya, M., & Kumarakulasingam, N. (2016). The Lived Experience of Food Sovereignty: Gender, Indigenous Crops and Small‐Scale Farming in Mtubatuba, South Africa. Journal of agrarian change..

Q2 Is agricultural transformation happening in Africa?

Aliber, M. & Hall, R. (2012) Support for smallholder farmers in South Africa: challenges of scale and strategy. Development southern Africa. 29, 4:

Andreasson, S. (2006) ‘Stand and Deliver: Private Property and the Politics of Global Dispossession’ Political studies., 54, 3-2

Ayeb, H, (2013) ’The Marginalisation of the small peasantry: Egypt and Tunisia’ in Ray Bush and Ayeb, H. eds Marginality and exclusion in Egypt

Bernstein, H. (2004) ‘Considering Africa’s Agrarian Questions’ Historical materialism. 12,4,115-144

Bernstein, H. (2010) Class dynamics of agrarian change intro and chapter 2

Bush, R. (2004) “Poverty and Neo-Liberal Bias in the Middle East and North Africa,” Development and change. Vol. 35, No. 4 (2004): pp. 673-695.

Mitchell, T. “The Market’s Place” in Directions of change in rural Egypt , eds. Nicholas S. Hopkins and Kirsten Westergaard (Cairo: The American University Press, 1998).

Oya, C. (2010) Agro-pessimism, capitalism and agrarian change trajectories and contradictions in Sub-Saharan Africa, in Padayachee ed World Bank (2007) Agriculture for Development, World Development Report 2008. Washington DC, World Bank.

_________(2010) ‘Principles for Responsible Agricultural Investment that Respects Rights, Livelihoods and Resources’ A discussion note prepared by FAO, IFAD, UNCTAD and the World Bank Group to contribute to an ongoing global dialogue. January 25,

Q3 What have been the main effects of the 2003-14 commodity boom for Africa? How problematic is a continuing reliance on commodity exports?

Fraser, A. (2010). Zambia, mining, and neoliberalism : boom and bust on the globalized copperbelt. Palgrave Macmillan. Introduction

Bonini, A. (2012). Complementary and Competitive Regimes of Accumulation: Natural Resources and Development in the World-System. 50. Journal of world-systems research [electronic resource].

Bush, R. (2008). Scrambling to the Bottom? Mining, Resources & Underdevelopment. Review of African political economy., 35(117), 361-366

Soares de Oliveira, R. (2012). Magnificent and beggar land : Angola since the Civil War. Chapter 2

Hickey, S., & Izama, A. (2016). The politics of governing oil in Uganda: going against the grain?. African affairs..

Moore, D. and S Mawowa 2010 ‘Mbimbos, Zvipamuzis and ‘primitive accumulation’ in Zimbabwe’s violent mineral economy’ in Padayachee ed The political economy of Africa

Morris, M., Kaplinsky, R., & Kaplan, D. (2012). One thing leads to another : promoting industrialisation by making the most of the commodity boom in sub-Saharan Africa Chapter 1.

Zack-Williams, Alfred. "Natural resources, economic rents and social justice in contemporary Africa." Review of African political economy. (2016): 533-539.

Taylor, I. (2016). Dependency redux: why Africa is not rising. Review of African political economy., 43(147), 8-25.

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Week Eight 

Land Reform and social transformation in eastern & southern Africa

This session continues to explore agricultural questions, but with specific focus on access to and ownership of land.

Q1 Who will make the best use of Africa’s land?

Hall, R. (2011) ‘Land Grabbing in Southern Africa’: the Many faces of the investor rush’ Review of African political economy. 38, 128

Isgren, E. (2016) ‘No quick fixes: Four interacting constraints to advancing agroecology in Uganda’, International journal of agricultural sustainability. Doi: 10.1080/14735903.2016.1144699

Jacobs, P. (2012) ‘Whither agrarian reform in South Africa?’ Review of African political economy. 39, 131

Lahiff, E. (2007) ‘Willing buyer, willing seller’: South Africa’s Failed Experiment in Market-Led Agrarian Reform’ in Third world quarterly., 28, (8)

Manjengwa, J., Hanlon, J. and Smart, T. (2014) ‘Who will make the “best” use of Africa’s land? Lessons from Zimbabwe’, Third world quarterly. 35(6): 980–95.

Neves, D. and A Du Toit (2013) ‘Rural Livelihoods in South Africa: Complexity, Vulnerability and Differentiation’ in Journal of agrarian change. 13, 1

Nyantakyi-Frimpong, H., Mambulu, F. N., Kerr, R. B., Luginaah, I. and Lupafya, E. (2016) ‘Agroecology and sustainable food systems: Participatory research to improve food security among HIV-affected households in northern Malawi’, Social science & medicine. 164: 89–99.

Peters, P. E. (2013). Land appropriation, surplus people and a battle over visions of agrarian futures in Africa. Journal of peasant studies., 40(3), 537-562.

Pretty, J., Bharucha, Z.P., Garba, M.H., Midega, C., Nkonya, E., Settle, W. and Zingore, S. (2014) ‘Foresight and African agriculture: Innovations and policy opportunities’, Foresight. London: Government Office for Science. Available at :

Scoones, I., Mavedzenge, B., & Murimbarimba, F. (2016). Sugar, People and Politics in Zimbabwe’s Lowveld. Journal of Southern African studies., 1-18.

Scoones, I. (2010) ‘Chapter 1’ in Scoones, ed. Zimbabwe's land reform : myths & realities

Q2 How is land reform linked to transformations in gender relations?

Claassens, A. (2013). Recent changes in women's land rights and contested customary law in South Africa. Journal of agrarian change., 13(1), 71-92.

Doss, C. R., Kovarik, C., Peterman, A., Quisumbing, A. R., & Van den Bold, M. (2013). Gender inequalities in ownership and control of land in Africa: myths versus reality. IFPRI working paper- available at

Doss, C., Meinzen-Dick, R., & Bomuhangi, A. (2014). Who owns the land? Perspectives from rural Ugandans and implications for large-scale land acquisitions. Feminist economics., 20(1), 76-100.

Mbilinyi, M. (2016). Analysing the history of agrarian struggles in Tanzania from a feminist perspective. Review of African political economy., 43(sup1), 115-129.

Tsikata, D., & Yaro, J. A. (2014). When a good business model is not enough: Land transactions and gendered livelihood prospects in rural Ghana. Feminist economics., 20(1), 202-226.

Verma, R. (2014). Land grabs, power, and gender in East and Southern Africa: So, what's new?. Feminist economics., 20(1), 52-75.

Q3 Is there a land and water grab in Africa?

Bottazzi, P., Goguen, A., & Rist, S. (2016). Conflicts of customary land tenure in rural Africa: is large-scale land acquisition a driver of ‘institutional innovation’?. Journal of peasant studies., 1-18.

Chinsinga, B. (2016). The Green Belt Initiative, Politics and Sugar Production in Malawi. Journal of Southern African studies., 1-15.

Chinsinga, B., & Wren-Lewis, L. (2013). Grabbing Land in Malawi. Corruption, Grabbing and Development: Real World Challenges, Søreide and Williams (Eds.). Available at

McMichael, P. (2012). The land grab and corporate food regime restructuring. Journal of peasant studies., 39(3-4), 681-701.

van Eeden, A., Mehta, L., & van Koppen, B. (2016). Whose waters? Large-scale agricultural development and water grabbing in the Wami-Ruvu River Basin, Tanzania. Water Alternatives, 9(3), 608. Available at:

Woodhouse, P. (2012) ‘Foreign agricultural land acquisition and the visibility of water resource impacts in Sub-Saharan Africa’, Water Alternatives 5(2): 208–22. Available at:

Zoomers, A. (2010). Globalisation and the foreignisation of space: seven processes driving the current global land grab. Journal of peasant studies., 37(2), 429-447.

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Week Nine 

Debate: ‘Rwanda is a model developmental state: reducing poverty, food insecurity and transforming gender relations’.

This debate explores that concept of the developmental state through a focus on Rwanda.


Routley, L. (2014). Developmental states in Africa? A review of ongoing debates and buzzwords. Development policy review., 32(2), 159-177.

Mkandawire, T. (2001). Thinking about developmental states in Africa. Cambridge journal of economics., 25(3), 289-314.

Evans, P. (2010). Constructing the 21st century developmental state: potentialities and pitfalls. Constructing a democratic developmental state in South Africa : potentials and challenges, 37-58.

Whitfield, L., & Buur, L. (2014). The politics of industrial policy: ruling elites and their alliances. Third world quarterly., 35(1), 126-144.

Thematic reading on Rwanda


Ali, D. A., Deininger, K., & Goldstein, M. (2014). Environmental and gender impacts of land tenure regularization in Africa: pilot evidence from Rwanda. Journal of Development Economics., 110, 262-275.

Burnet, J. E. (2008). Gender balance and the meanings of women in governance in post-genocide Rwanda. African affairs., 107(428), 361-386.

Burnet, J. E. (2011). Women have found respect: Gender quotas, symbolic representation, and female empowerment in Rwanda. Politics and gender, 7(03), 303-334.

Devlin, C., & Elgie, R. (2008). The effect of increased women's representation in parliament: The case of Rwanda. Parliamentary affairs. 61(2), 237-254.

Nzayisenga, M. J., Orjuela, C., & Schierenbeck, I. (2016). Food (In) Security, Human (In) Security, Women’s (In) Security: State Policies and Local Experiences in Rural Rwanda. African security, 9(4), 278-298.


Ansoms, A. (2009). Re-engineering rural society: The visions and ambitions of the Rwandan elite. African affairs., 108(431), 289-309.

Ansoms, A., & McKay, A. (2010). A quantitative analysis of poverty and livelihood profiles: The case of rural Rwanda. Food policy., 35(6), 584-598.

Ansoms, A., Marijnen, E., Cioffo, G., & Murison, J. (2016). Statistics versus livelihoods: questioning Rwanda’s pathway out of poverty. Review of African political economy., 1-19.

Binagwaho, A., Farmer, P.E., Nsanzimana, S., Karema, C., Gasana, M., de Dieu Ngirabega, J., Ngabo, F., Wagner, C.M., Nutt, C.T., Nyatanyi, T. and Gatera, M., 2014. Rwanda 20 years on: investing in life. The Lancet, 384(9940), pp.371-375.

Dawson, N., Martin, A., & Sikor, T. (2016). Green revolution in Sub-Saharan Africa: Implications of imposed innovation for the Wellbeing of rural smallholders. World development., 78, 204-218.

Huggins, C. D. (2014). ‘Control Grabbing’ and small-scale agricultural intensification: emerging patterns of state-facilitated ‘agricultural investment’ in Rwanda. Journal of peasant studies., 41(3), 365-384.

Howe, G., & McKay, A. (2007). Combining quantitative and qualitative methods in assessing chronic poverty: The case of Rwanda. World development., 35(2), 197-211.

McKay, A., & Verpoorten, M. (2016). Growth, Poverty Reduction, and Inequality in Rwanda. Growth and Poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa, Chapter in Growth & Poverty Reduction in Sub-Saharan Africa- UN-WIDER- Oxford University Press- Full text available at

Ngamaba, K. H. (2016). Happiness and life satisfaction in Rwanda. Journal of psychology in Africa, 26(5), 407-414.

Pritchard, M. F. (2013). Land, power and peace: Tenure formalization, agricultural reform, and livelihood insecurity in rural Rwanda. Land use policy., 30(1), 186-196.

Aid interactions

Hayman, R. (2007). Are the MDGs enough? Donor perspectives and recipient visions of education and poverty reduction in Rwanda. International journal of educational development., 27(4), 371-382.

Knutsson, B. (2016). Responsible risk taking: The neoliberal biopolitics of people living with HIV/AIDS in Rwanda. Development and change. 47(3), 615-39

Lavers, T. (2016) Elite commitment to social protection in Rwanda- UN-WIDER working paper- available at

Rosa, G., Majorin, F., Boisson, S., Barstow, C., Johnson, M., Kirby, M., ... & Clasen, T. (2014). Assessing the impact of water filters and improved cook stoves on drinking water quality and household air pollution: a randomised controlled trial in Rwanda. PLoS ONE, 9(3), e91011.

Schimmel, N. (2010). Failed aid: How development agencies are neglecting and marginalising Rwandan genocide survivors. Development in practice., 20(3), 407-413.

Rwandan state

Ansoms, A., & Rostagno, D. (2012). Rwanda's Vision 2020 halfway through: what the eye does not see. Review of African political economy., 39(133), 427-450.

Booth, D., & Golooba-Mutebi, F. (2012). Developmental patrimonialism? The case of Rwanda. African affairs., 111(444), 379-403.

Goodfellow, T., & Smith, A. (2013). From urban catastrophe to ‘model’ city? Politics, security and development in post-conflict Kigali. Urban studies., 50(15), 3185-3202.

Harrison, G. (2016). Rwanda: an agrarian developmental state?. Third world quarterly., 37(2), 354-370.

Hasselskog, M. (2015). Rwandan developmental ‘social engineering’: What does it imply and how is it displayed? Progress in development studies., 15(2), 154-169.

Huggins, C. (2016). Discipline, Governmentality and ‘Developmental Patrimonialism’: Insights from Rwanda's Pyrethrum Sector. Journal of agrarian change..

Mamdani, M. (2001). When victims become killers : colonialism, nativism & the genocide in Rwanda. Princeton University Press.

Mann, L., & Berry, M. (2015). Understanding the Political Motivations That Shape Rwanda's Emergent Developmental State. New political economy., 1-26.

Reyntjens, F. (2011). Constructing the truth, dealing with dissent, domesticating the world: Governance in post-genocide Rwanda. African affairs., 110(438), 1-34.

Reyntjens, F. (2013). Political governance in post-genocide Rwanda [electronic resource]. Cambridge University Press.

Wrong, M. (2016). False Idols. Foreign policy., (218), 72.


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Week Ten 

African Futures: Capitalism, Climate Change and China?

In the final lecture/seminar discussion, we consider the future trajectories of change in Africa.

Questions for Discussion:

Q1 In what ways does China shape the political economy of change in Africa?

Brautigam, D. (2009) The dragon's gift : the real story of China in Africa Chapter 11

Hackenesch, C. (2013). Aid Donor Meets Strategic Partner? The European Union’s and China’s Relations with Ethiopia. Journal of current Chinese affairs.42 (1), 7-36.

Holslag, J. (2011). China and the coups: Coping with political instability in Africa. African affairs.110 (440), 367-386.

Carmody, P. (2013) The Rise of the BRICS in Africa Chapter 2

Kaplinsky, R. (2013). What contribution can China make to inclusive growth in sub‐Saharan Africa?. Development and change., 44(6), 1295-1316.

Mohan, G., & Lampert, B. (2013). Negotiating china: reinserting African agency into China–Africa relations. African affairs., 112(446), 92-110

Scoones, I., Amanor, K., Favareto, A., & Qi, G. (2016). A new politics of development cooperation? Chinese and Brazilian engagements in African agriculture. World development. 81, 1-12

Q2 Is climate change a catastrophe, or an opportunity for Africa?

Death, C. (2015). Four discourses of the green economy in the global South. Third world quarterly., 36(12), 2207-2224.

Death, C. (2016). The green state in Africa. Yale University Press

Death, C. (2016). Green states in Africa: beyond the usual suspects. Environmental politics., 25(1), 116-135.

GoE. (2011) Ethiopia’s Climate-Resilient Green Economy Strategy, Addis-Ababa: Government of Ethiopia available at:

Jones, L., & Carabine, E. (2013) Exploring Political and Socio-Economic Drivers of Transformational Climate Policy: Early Insights from the Design of Ethiopia's Climate Resilient Green Economy Strategy. Overseas Development Institute, Working Paper available at:

Mosberg, M., & Eriksen, S. H. (2015). Responding to climate variability and change in dryland Kenya: The role of illicit coping strategies in the politics of adaptation. Global Environmental Change, 35, 545-557

Nelson, M. B. (2016). Africa’s Regional Powers and Climate Change Negotiations. Global environmental politics 16(2)110-29

Q3 What is the future for Africa’s youth?

Abdulai, A. G., & Hickey, S. (2016). The politics of development under competitive clientelism: Insights from Ghana's education sector. African affairs., 115(458), 44-72.

Banks, N. (2016). Youth poverty, employment and livelihoods: social and economic implications of living with insecurity in Arusha, Tanzania. Environment and urbanization., 28(2), 437-454.

Chabal, P. (2011). Who Speaks for Africa?. Cahiers d'études africaines., (4), 979-988.

Chinsinga, B., & Chasukwa, M. (2012). Youth, agriculture and land grabs in Malawi. IDS bulletin., 43(6), 67-77.

Mabala, R. (2011). Youth and “the hood”-livelihoods and neighbourhoods. Environment and urbanization., 23(1), 157-181.

Von Hellermann, P. (2010). The chief, the youth and the plantation: communal politics in southern Nigeria. Journal of modern African studies., 48(02), 259-283.

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Week Eleven Beginning 01/05/17

Individual meetings for research report writing

This list was last updated on 19/02/2018