Full text
Amin, Samir. ‘Underdevelopment and Dependence in Black Africa: Historical Origin’
1972, Journal of Peace Research, 9(2), pp. 105–120
Expand entry
Abstract:

Keeping in mind the variety of social, cultural and economic conditions distinguishing African Societies, the author divides the continent into three macro-regions: (1) Africa of the colonial economy (enlarged West Africa) (2) Africa of the concession companies (Congo Basin) (3) Africa of the labor reserves (East and South Africa).The dialectics between colonial policies and social formations and modes of production in ternal to the regions are seen as a major determinant in shaping the history of underdevelopment in Black Africa. On this basis, four historical periods are analyzed : (1) The pre-mercantilist period (2) The mercantilist period (3) The preparatory phase for colonization (4) The colonization period. Concluding the discussion of the colonization period, the author points to the necessity of viewing African socities as dependent, peripheral ones, shaped according to the needs of dominant, capitalist societies.

Comment: The paper distinguishes three macro-regions within the African continent, as well as distinguishing four separate periods of African history. The paper can be used as an early study of the effects of colonialism.

Export citation in BibTeX format
Export text citation
View this text on PhilPapers
Export citation in Reference Manager format
Export citation in EndNote format
Export citation in Zotero format
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Plus Share on Pinterest Share by Email More options
Full text
Bimha, Primrose, Z. J. The Status of African Women in Foreign Policy
2021, Bimha, P, Z.J. (2021). The Status of African Women in Foreign Policy. E-International Relations.
Expand entry
Abstract: ‘The Status of African Women in Foreign Policy’ focuses on the necessity of reducing the underrepresentation of African women in foreign policy, the barriers that hinder this development, and solutions to overcome those. According to Bimha, filling the gender gap, or solving the underrepresentation of women, will constitute the end of discrimination against women. Moreover, she argues, this is necessary to repair the currently male-dominated nature of international relations and will complement to reformation process of gender stereotypes, namely, “men as decision-makers and women as subjects of war-related decisions”. However, Bimha recognizes that certain barriers that this underrepresentation are alive. She notes that, although the number of female representatives is increasing, these women are often assigned to less significant posts. The impact of IR & politics being male-dominated The heads of state often make diplomatic appointments. If a head of state, which is often male, is conservative, he is less likely to appoint female diplomats, as they are often very progressive and transformation-oriented. This is also apparent in party-bias, a phenomenon where party leaders prefer to promote male candidates over female candidates. , even though female candidates have not been proven to attract fewer votes than male candidates. The underrepresentation of women in politics is a vicious cycle, with males in the male-dominated field of IR theory and politics preferring the appointment of men over the appointment of women. This is reinforced by sociocultural standards and expectations, as African women are still mostly associated with the domestic sphere. However, little attention is paid to IR theory and politics being male-dominated, even though it is apparent that this does have a big impact on the underrepresentation of women in the field. The underrepresentation of feminism in the IR curriculum and its consequences In the ‘Introduction Course International Relations’ at Utrecht University, different IR theories have been discussed. While extensive attention has been paid to especially realism and liberalism, which are both male-dominated IR theories, feminism has been discussed for exactly 3 minutes and 48 seconds during the lecture on IR theories and has not been discussed in the seminars to the same extent as the other IR theories. This is a great although a small example of feminism theories being vastly underrepresented in the IR curriculum. Therefore, Bimha argues that the international relations curriculum should be reformed into a more gender-sensitive one with an increased focus on feminism and female contributions in the field. The importance of spreading awareness of IR and politics being male-dominated can be illustrated by a small comparison with another article on women in international relations. The other article reviewed appoints the underrepresentation of women in the IR field to them being a minority group and therefore behaving differently, or them focussing on topics that are not considered important in mainstream IR. These arguments may seem plausible to people who lack the understanding that the field of IR is male-dominated. But students who are aware of this unequal representation may ask the following questions: who steers mainstream IR research? What causes women to be a minority in the field of IR? Who keeps that disbalance intact? Thinking about these questions and critically reviewing the conclusions of reports on women in international relations is a crucial step in academics. However, the ability to perform this critical thinking is subject to one’s understanding of the field. Therefore, awareness of and the spread of knowledge on the IR field being male-dominated, thereby reinforcing the vicious cycle of women being underrepresented, is incredibly important and should be part of the IR curriculum.

Comment: The article is a must-read for international relations students. An eye-opener for students who lack knowledge of, or the understanding of, the importance of feminism in IR theory and politics. Bimha excellently explains the sociocultural discrimination African female academics and politicians disproportionally face in their careers and explains the importance of overcoming these barriers and closing the gender gap. The article outlines the importance of feminism and why feminism should be taught more thoroughly in the IR curriculum.

Export citation in BibTeX format
Export text citation
View this text on PhilPapers
Export citation in Reference Manager format
Export citation in EndNote format
Export citation in Zotero format
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Plus Share on Pinterest Share by Email More options
Grovogui, Siba. Postcolonial Criticism: International reality and modes of inquiry
2002, Power, Postcolonialism and International Relations: Reading Race, Gender. Eds Geeta, C. and Nair, S.
Expand entry
Abstract:

Comment: Chapter found in the book Power, Postcolonialism and International Relations : Reading Race, Gender and Class. The book uses postcolonial theory to examine the implications of race, class, and gender relations for the structuring of world politics. The book includes chapters from several non-Western scholars. Whereas alternative narratives provided by non-Western could shed new light on specific issues in IR, Grovogui criticizes the study of IR itself. He focuses on the lack of Western IR scholars’ openness to postcolonial ideas about IR. The chapter provides a reflection on IR theories and concepts as they are mostly constructed by Western scholars.

Export citation in BibTeX format
Export text citation
View this text on PhilPapers
Export citation in Reference Manager format
Export citation in EndNote format
Export citation in Zotero format
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Plus Share on Pinterest Share by Email More options
Full text
Mukimbiri, Jean. The Seven Stages of the Rwandan Genocide
2005, Mukimbiri, J. (2005) “The Seven Stages of the Rwandan Genocide,” Journal of International Criminal Justice, 3(4), pp. 823–836.
Expand entry
Added by: Hannah Savage
Abstract:

Drawing upon a book by J.M. Lecomte on the genocide of the Jews by the Nazi Germans, the author examines the seven stages in the genocide of the Tutsi in Rwanda. These stages, which do not necessarily follow one another in time but may overlap, can be classified in the following way: (i) definition of the target group on the basis of some criteria; (ii) registration of the victims; (iii) designation or outward identification of the victims; (iv) restriction and confiscation of goods; (v) exclusion from professions, working activities and means of transportation, among other things; (vi) systematic isolation; (vii) mass extermination.

Comment: This is an easy text discussing the Rwandan Genocide. It is suitable for an introductory-level course on the Rwandan Genocide; genocide studies; episodes of mass violence or ethnic conflict.

Export citation in BibTeX format
Export text citation
View this text on PhilPapers
Export citation in Reference Manager format
Export citation in EndNote format
Export citation in Zotero format
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Plus Share on Pinterest Share by Email More options
Full text
Ndlovu-Gatsheni, Sabelo. J. Coloniality of Power in Postcolonial Africa: Myths of Decolonization
2013, Dakar: CODESRIA (Codesria book series).
Expand entry
Publisher’s Note:

This book interrogates the African postcolonial condition with a focus on the thematics of liberation predicament and the long standing crisis of dependence (epistemological, cultural, economic, and political) created by colonialism and coloniality. A deployment of historical, philosophical, and political knowledge in combination with the equiprimordial concepts of coloniality of power, coloniality of being, and coloniality of knowledge yields a comprehensive understanding of African realities of subalternity.

Comment: This book takes an interdisciplinary approach to understanding the 'African postcolonial condition'. The author aims to understand the role of colonialism of power in shaping the complex history of the African postcolonial present. It is an indispensable source for understanding the broad and deeply-seated long-term impacts of colonialism in Africa, demonstrating the inability or stagnation of African development, regarding such things as nation-building, economic development and democratisation, as a result of the continued entrapment of Africa within colonial matrices of power.

Export citation in BibTeX format
Export text citation
View this text on PhilPapers
Export citation in Reference Manager format
Export citation in EndNote format
Export citation in Zotero format
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Plus Share on Pinterest Share by Email More options
Full text
Nkiwane, Tandeka. Africa and International Relations: Regional Lessons for a Global Discourse
2001, International Political Science Review / Revue internationale de science politique, 22(3), pp. 279–290.
Expand entry
, Contributed by: Sascha Jongsma
Abstract:

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: Discusses the contribution to international relations that can be made by Africa and African scholars. Can be used in a course on demainstreaming IR, or postcolonial IR, arguing that the production of knowledge in the context of dominant and imperial relations of power has led to an inaccurate perception of African contributions to the discipline of IR. Important text showing that contributions of African cases, African debates, and African scholarship will enhance theory-building in the field and challenge many of the assumptions held by some theorists.

Export citation in BibTeX format
Export text citation
View this text on PhilPapers
Export citation in Reference Manager format
Export citation in EndNote format
Export citation in Zotero format
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Plus Share on Pinterest Share by Email More options
Full text
Obi, Cyril. Nigeria’s foreign policy and transnational security challenges in West Africa
2008, Journal of Contemporary African Studies Vol.26, No.2, April 2008, 183-196
Expand entry
, Contributed by: Atanas Malakchiev
Abstract:

This article explores how Nigeria's foreign policy has responded to transnational security challenges in West Africa. It engages in a conceptual overview of the discourse on transnational security and links this with a discussion of Nigeria's foreign policy towards West Africa. Of note is Nigeria's pursuit of a leadership role in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), in its quest for security, economic integration and development. Several questions are posed: What do Nigerian policymakers consider to be the most significant transnational threats in West Africa? How and through what legitimate policies and instruments do they respond to such threats? How important is ECOWAS to Nigeria's attempt to respond to transnational threats? And how effective have Nigeria's attempts to influence the ECOWAS agenda in this regard been? Although ECOWAS has remained central to Nigeria's responses to transnational security threats in the subregion, the country has not been able to match its rhetoric on addressing transnational security threats with far-reaching concrete achievements. It is suggested that social transformation of Nigeria's current foreign policy (that is, to one focused and committed to putting people at its centre) and a change in the policies of dominant global powers towards West Africa would enhance human emancipation and eliminate the numerous insecurities confronting the peoples of the subregion.

Comment: The text offers an overview of security threats in West Africa and the ways that Nigeria has tried to address them using the mechanisms provided by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Nigeria has sought a leadership role in this organization through economic and military aid to its members. The article can be used to illustrate the ways that a country can pursue its foreign policy through multilateral organizations such as ECOWAS.

Export citation in BibTeX format
Export text citation
View this text on PhilPapers
Export citation in Reference Manager format
Export citation in EndNote format
Export citation in Zotero format
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Plus Share on Pinterest Share by Email More options
Full text Read free
Odoom, Isaac, Adrews, Nathan. What/who is still missing in International Relations scholarship? Situating Africa as an agent in IR theorising
2016, Third World Quarterly 38, no. 1 (2016): pp. 42-60
Expand entry
, Contributed by: Sarah Schmeitz
Abstract:

This paper engages with non-Western, specifically African, scholarship and insight with the goal of highlighting the importance of African contributions to IR theorising. We highlight the Western dominance in IR theorising and examine the inadequacy of the major analytical constructs provided by established IR theory in capturing and explaining shifting reality in Africa. We argue that African insights, experience and ideas present a challenge to dominant IR constructs and knowledge within the international system, and that these insights, when taken seriously, would enrich our understanding of IR. We show this by problematising some central (often taken-for-granted) IR concepts such as the state, liberalism and individualism and underscore the need to reconstruct more encompassing ‘stories’ and images to innovate, revise and potentially replace some of the conventional ‘stories’ that have been told in IR.

Comment: Provides a good overview on the importance of non-western perspectives within IR theory, useful to make students aware of the level of eurocentrism in IR.

Export citation in BibTeX format
Export text citation
View this text on PhilPapers
Export citation in Reference Manager format
Export citation in EndNote format
Export citation in Zotero format
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Plus Share on Pinterest Share by Email More options
Full text Read free
Zondi, Siphamandla. Decolonising International Relations and Its Theory: A Critical Conceptual Meditation
2018, Politikon 45(1): 16-31.
Expand entry
, Contributed by: Andrea Bányácskiová
Abstract: One of the main implications of the push for transition from the monoculture of Eurocentric scientific knowledge towards the ecology of knowledge is to force us to pose the question: what does a decolonial turn in International Relations (IR) entail? This article grapples with this question in light of growing demands for a decolonial turn in knowledge and power. The aim is to meditate on this question with a view to open up new avenues for a structured conversation on decolonising IR and its theory. This imperative to decolonise is linked to the question of epistemic justice with implications for the epistemological structure underpinning IR, methodological frameworks for the study of IR, theoretical outlines and the teaching of the discipline. Epistemic justice is a necessity alongside historical justice for those on the margins of a world system constructed with the help of imperialism, systematic enslavement and colonialism. This article discusses the question of the decolonial turn in IR in the hope of stimulating debates on the views of the margins regarding the present state and the future of this area of knowledge, and thus move us closer to an ecology of knowledge and power.

Comment: The paper discusses the immensely colonial nature of the discipline of International Relations and thus the increasing need to decolonise not only IR, but knowledge and power in science, in general - great topic for discussion.

Export citation in BibTeX format
Export text citation
View this text on PhilPapers
Export citation in Reference Manager format
Export citation in EndNote format
Export citation in Zotero format
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Plus Share on Pinterest Share by Email More options