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Other titles in the Africa and the Diaspora: History, Politics, Culture series:
The Postcolonial State in Africa: Fifty Years of Independence, 1960-2010 (Africa and the Diaspora: History, Politics, Culture)by Crawford Young
Synopses & Reviews
Angola, a former Portuguese colony in southern central Africa, gained independence in 1975 and almost immediately plunged into more than two decades of conflict and crisis. Fidel Castro sent Cuban military troops to Angola in support of the Movimento Popular de Libertaand#231;and#227;o de Angola (MPLA), leading to its ascension to power despite facing threats both international and domestic. What is less known, and what Cubans in Angola brings to light, is the significant role Cubans played in the transformation of civil society in Angola during these years. Offering not just military support but also political, medical, administrative, and technical expertise as well as educational assistance, the Cuban presence in Angola is a unique example of transatlantic cooperation between two formerly colonized nations in the global South.
In The Postcolonial State in Africa, Crawford Young offers an informed and authoritative comparative overview of fifty years of African independence, drawing on his decades of research and first-hand experience on the African continent.
Young identifies three cycles of hope and disappointment common to many of the African states (including those in North Africa) over the last half-century: initial euphoria at independence in the 1960s followed by disillusionment with a lapse into single-party autocracies and military rule; a period of renewed confidence, radicalization, and ambitious state expansion in the 1970s preceding state crisis and even failure in the disastrous 1980s; and a phase of reborn optimism during the continental wave of democratization beginning around 1990. He explores in depth the many African civil wars—especially those since 1990—and three key tracks of identity: Africanism, territorial nationalism, and ethnicity.
Only more recently, Young argues, have the paths of the fifty-three African states begun to diverge more dramatically, with some leading to liberalization and others to political, social, and economic collapse—outcomes impossible to predict at the outset of independence.
Cubans in Angola explores the unique and influential cooperation between two formerly colonized countries separated by the Atlantic Ocean in the global south.and#160;
About the Author
Crawford Young is the Rupert Emerson Professor of Political Science at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. His many books include The Rise and Decline of the Zairian State, Ideology and Development in Africa, The Politics of Cultural Pluralism, and The African Colonial State in Comparative Perspective.
Table of Contents
List of Tables
Glossary and Acronyms
Part I Setting the Frame
1 A Half-Century of African Independence: Three Cycles of Hope and Disappointment
2 In Search of the African State
Part II Itineraries: The Three Cycles of Hope and Disappointment
3 Decolonization, the Independence Settlement, and Colonial Legacy
4 The Road to Autocracy: Breakdown of the Decolonization Settlements
5. Anatomy of State Crisis
6 Democratization and Its Limits
Part III Themes and Conclusions
7 Morphology of Violent Civil Conflict
8 Africanism, Nationalism and Ethnicity: Th Ambiguous Triple Helix of Identity
9 The African Post-colonial State: Concluding Observations
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