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Nkiwane, Tandeka. C. Africa and International Relations: Regional Lessons for a Global Discourse
2001, Political Science Review 22, no. 3: 279–290
, Contributed by: Eva Brom
Case studies, theories, and examples from Africa are exceedingly rare in international relations. Indeed, examples from Africa are, at best, valued for their nuisance potential. This article argues that the study of international relations is limited by this interpretation of Africa, and by a larger ignorance of African contributions. Key debates on the African continent surrounding the central concepts of mainstream international relations, including the state, power, and self-determination, are interrogated with a view to expanding their use in contemporary international relations. The examples of apartheid South Africa, the African debate on political economy and development, and African perspectives on questions raised by the liberal paradigm, are used to illustrate the importance of the region to the more global discourses. In examining the important contribution of African scholarship to debates central to international relations, this article highlights the necessity for engaging African scholars in the broader discourses of international relations.

Comment: The text criticizes the Western way of thinking of liberalism and can be used as a counterpoint to mainstream liberalism making it a good basis for a debate.

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