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The rise of multipartyism and democracy in the context of global change : the case of Africa /
Tukumbi Lumumba-Kasongo.
Westport, Conn. : Praeger, 1998.
x, 151 p. 23 cm.
0275960870 (alk. paper)
More Details
Westport, Conn. : Praeger, 1998.
0275960870 (alk. paper)
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Tukumbi Lumumba-Kasongo is Herbert J. Charles and Florence Charles Faegre Professor of Political Science and Chair of the Department of International Studies at Wells College, Senior Fellow at the Institute for African Development at Cornell University, Visiting Scholar in the Department of City and Regional Planning at Cornell University, and Director of Ceparred
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1999-02:
This slim volume joins a veritable flood of studies on multiparty democracy in Africa that have appeared since 1991. The value of this study lies in the author's authenticity as an African intellectual and his deep knowledge of a few African countries. Lumumba-Kasongo draws particularly on his familiarity with the Democratic Republic of Congo and his substantial experience in C¶te d'Ivoire, which makes up for an extraordinary light research effort. Somewhat typical of African intellectuals, Lumumba-Kasongo rejects the universality of Western-style democracy and calls for local redefinitions of the concept. Also typically, he insists that democracy can have no meaning in the absence of social equity and economic development. Rather disappointingly, he tends to absolve many African dictators of their sins by insisting that they "were either imposed on Africans or supported by some imperialist states so that Africa could continue to serve industrial countries more effectively," though no evidence is presented on this score. More disappointing still is the lack of any clear prescriptions from the author. Finally, the book is in need of better editing, as references to "Bernard Mugabe of Zimbabwe" suggest. Upper-division undergraduates and above. J. F. Clark; Florida International University
Review Quotes
'œThe value of this study lies in the author's authenticity as an African intellectual and his deep knowledge of a few African countries. Upper-division undergraduates and above.'' Choice
'œTukumbi Lumumba-Kasongo has written a very informative and provocative book. Indeed, it enriches our understanding of democratic practices and values far beyond Africa. It is an excellent source in the study of democracy in general and African politics in particular. No doubt, many will disagree with the author's premise, vision of relevant democracy, and policy recommendations. Regardless, this volume is a refreshing alternative to the many books that attempt to assess the progress or lack of progress in Africa's democratization process by measuring how many multiparty elections have taken place. Even those who would strongly disagree with the author are likely to find this book challenging and packed with valuable information.'' American Political Science Review
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, February 1999
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Long Description
Lumumba-Kasongo examines those forces that contributed to the fate of multiparty democracy in Africa. The forces include the state, political parties, ethnicity, nationalism, religion, underdevelopment, and the global market. Multipartyism in Africa is not necessarily democratic. However, the processes toward multipartyism can produce democratic discourses if they can be transformed by popular and social movements. As the author points out, almost all social classes have demanded some form of democracy. Yet the sociological meanings and teleological perspectives of those forms of democracy depend on an individual or group's economic and educational status. The dynamics of the global context, as reflected in the adoption of the structural adjustment programs of the World Bank and the stability programs of the International Monetary Fund, are likely to produce non-democratic conditions in Africa. Lumumba-Kasongo challenges the existing paradigms on democracy and development, so the book is of considerable interest to scholars and policy makers involved with African politics and socio-economic development.
Unpaid Annotation
Written at a time when many African states have been challenged by various opposition movements, this study examines new political and social realities through a historical analysis of such phenomena as the collapse of the state, the end of tyranny, and the role of popular movements.
Table of Contents
Prefacep. vii
Abbreviationsp. ix
Introduction: Issues, Approaches, and Theoretical Considerationsp. 1
The Nature of Democratic Discourses in the 1990sp. 21
The Opposition Political Parties and Their Discoursesp. 37
The Role of the Church in Democratic Pluralism in Africap. 63
Ethnicity and Nationalism: Real Challenges to Multipartyism?p. 81
The Military Factor in the Current Democracy Equationp. 101
Structural Adjustment Programs and Their Implications in the Struggle for Democracyp. 113
A General Conclusion: What Lessons from the Past and Where to Go from Here?p. 131
Selected Bibliographyp. 143
Indexp. 147
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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