We all know that many African countries face political tyranny, failed capitalist development, and violent domestic conflict. What is less clear is what relationship may exist between effective democratic institutions and the solution of the last two problems. Richard Sandbrook draws on the experience with democratisation of a carefully selected sample of countries: Ghana, Mali and Niger in West Africa; Zambia, Tanzania and Madagascar in East Africa; and Sudan. He illustrates the diversity of African experiences of the transition to democratic political forms and the complex relationships between democratic institutions and economic reform and social order. He concludes that the ultimate value of democratic institutions lies in whether they lead to economic progress and social justice and peace.
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Richard Sandbrook is Professor of Political Science at the University of Toronto.
“Sandbrook does a remarkable job presenting an extraordinary range of material about an extraordinary complex subject--the meltdown of politics and economies in Africa--in a way that makes complete sense of the challenges and proposes a clear solution.” —Timothy Brook, Stanford University
“A comprehensive, scholarly, thoroughly researched, objective analysis of the state of political and economic trends in Africa in recent times.” —Patrick Molutsi, International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance
“Richard Sandbrook is in the commendable habit of writing successful books. This is in the tradition of the earlier ones, but surpasses them in incisive communicative lucidity, logic, and scholarly rigor.” —Professor J.A.A. Ayoade, University of Ibadan
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