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Author: ROAPEadmin

Harry Verhoeven praises the fine-grained analysis in a new book on Rwanda which has the potential to decisively move beyond widespread caricatures of Rwanda under RPF supremo Paul Kagame as either a ‘slowly democratising developmental state’ (as infatuated aid officials conveniently assert) or as a ‘totalitarian’ leader where no resistance is possible. Yet there are serious weaknesses that speak to the approach taken by the author....

For the latest update on the project Popular Protest and Social Movements for roape.net David Seddon examines the case of Zimbabwe, where President Robert Mugabe has faced a new kind of protest movement this year, and recent developments in the DRC, where President Kabila has attempted to bludgeon into silence opposition protesting against attempts to extend his mandate....

In this far-reaching and provocative contribution to roape.net's debate on capitalism in Africa, Elísio Macamo argues that instead of discussing whether “Capitalism” as such is a valid concept or a useful description of social phenomena in Africa, we should interrogate how concepts developed in very specific times and places under specific circumstances can be usefully deployed in other settings. ...

In an interview with ROAPE Explo Nani-Kofi looks at his involvement (and opposition) in the project of radical change briefly embarked on by Flight Lieutenant Jerry Rawlings in 1980s Ghana. After several years, left-wing opponents of the regime were imprisoned and at the same time the country became a test case for structural adjustment. Nani-Kofi describes his experiences....

In October scholars and archivists on Africa came together in Lusaka, Zambia, for a workshop on the theme of “Endangered and Post-Colonial Archives in Eastern and Southern Africa.” Co-organised by the Southern African Institute for Policy and Research (SAIPAR) and the British Institute in Eastern Africa (BIEA), and part-funded by the Review of African Political Economy (ROAPE) the workshop explored the challenges and realities of preserving “endangered” material in Eastern and Southern Africa, and to plan and discuss practical steps that could be taken now and for the future to preserve and promote endangered historical material in the region....

Continuing our series on capitalism on the continent Kate Meagher writes how debates on industrial policy and the developmental state in Africa have directed attention to wider processes of class formation and economic transformation that seemed until recently to have fallen out of fashion. In this blog she looks at the transformation in the African working class....

At a ROAPE organised workshop at the ASAUK in September on 'African capitalist society' speakers reflected on the state of scholarship on capitalism in Africa and the dynamic and development of capitalism on the continent. Kate Meagher (LSE), Stefan Ouma (Frankfurt) and Jesse Ovadia (Windsor) were speakers, and Jörg Wiegratz (Leeds) and Peter Lawrence (Keele) chairs. ...

Following a recent debate on 'African Capitalist Society' organised by Jörg Wiegratz of the Review of African Political Economy at the UK African Studies Association conference in Cambridge, Stefan Ouma continues the discussion on roape.net. As Ouma points out the historical context for such a debate is very different from the 1970s and 1980s – when ROAPE was at the forefront of scholarly discussions on this topic. Ouma argues passionately for a less holistic framing of the subject matter, talking in plural terms and avoiding linear, territorial, singular or transhistorical notions of 'capitalism'....