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Department of Politics and International Studies

The state and politics in Africa

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Full Year

This course focuses on the domestic and international politics of Africa since Independence. The main themes have been selected to familiarise students with some of the key issues in contemporary debates about African politics, in both its domestic and international dimensions. Throughout an emphasis is placed on the critical questioning of mainstream orthodoxies in both the academic and policy-oriented literature. The core themes in the domestic politics part of the course are the state, conflict, local and 'traditional' politics, new social forces and democratisation. The international politics part of the course covers 'new' conflicts, humanitarian intervention, governance, human rights and external efforts to bring about democratisation.

Objectives and learning outcomes of the course

  1. To acquire knowledge about the domestic and international politics of Africa.
  2. To gain an understanding of different approaches to the domestic & international politics of Africa.
  3. To acquire a basic understanding of the relationship between the analysis of African politics and the theoretical analysis of politics in general, with reference both to some normative and empirical issues.

Method of assessment

Assessment is 20% coursework and 80% unseen examination – the resubmission of coursework regulations do not apply to this course.