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Author: ROAPEadmin

Cape Town's water crisis is caused by both global environmental politics and local mismanagement. It is also a matter of social inequality in neoliberal post-apartheid South Africa. In this personal look at the crisis, Heike Becker writes about how the water shortage has exposed the country's deep racial and class inequalities. ...

After the death of Zimbabwean opposition leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, we republish an article from our archive on his party, the MDC, and the election in 2000 that almost toppled Mugabe’s ZANU-PF. Tsvangirai's greatest moment. Writing in 2000, Peter Alexander describes how Tsvangirai rose to prominence as a trade union organiser who went on to head the powerful union federation, the ZCTU, and eventually became Zimbabwe's most prominent opposition politician....

In a review of Jörg Wiegratz’s 'Neoliberal Moral Economy' based on years of research in Uganda, Yusuf Serunkuma Kajura discusses the central observation of the book that fraud (theft, short-termism, corruption, trickery etc.) has become widespread in contemporary capitalist societies. Wiegratz argues that the impact of the World Bank and IMF enforced structural adjustment programmes (SAPs), to a system of cooperation and trust in society has fundamentally altered Africa's moral economy....

In a debate on roape.net, David Harvey replies to John Smith’s critique of his work. Marxism, Harvey argues, must not start with concepts and then impose them on reality, but with the realities on the ground. To start with concepts, as does John Smith, is to engage in rank idealism. Harvey challenges what he describes as ‘Smith’s crude and rigid theory of imperialism.’...

Arndt Hopfmann asks what the legacy of the Russian Revolution can tell us about industrialisation and radical political transformation in the Global South, and in Africa in particular. He argues that there are lessons for the political economy of development and industrialization policies that must be learnt if we are serious about radical transformation today....

Heike Becker reports on the important Rosa Luxemburg conference in Berlin, which focused on Africa. However, the conference left her feeling profoundly uneasy. How can an event that claims to “question power” on the continent ignore the popular movements, mostly of young people, against authoritarian regimes, against enduring racism, austerity, and myriad forms of social inequality? Whose power, she asks, is not questioned?...

In a major critique of David Harvey's work, the radical political economist John Smith takes on Harvey's claim that the “East” is now exploiting the “West,” a statement, he argues, that is backed up by nothing more than his authority. Harvey could not be more wrong, or about a bigger issue. The root of Harvey's error is his denial that the global shift of production to low-wage countries represents a major deepening of imperialist exploitation....

In the latest blogpost on the ROAPE/Third World Network workshop in Accra, Elisa Greco argues that uncovering and documenting rural and urban struggles which often do not make the headlines is one of the key tasks of activist-intellectuals. Analysing the contradictions internal to these struggles, she argues, requires a ruthless analysis of their internal contradictions and necessitates a sustained optimism of the will....

A recent ROAPE blog provided evidence of some negative impacts of the agricultural reform in Rwanda, and several ROAPE articles have critiqued claims of success. Chris Huggins author of a new book, Agricultural Reform in Rwanda: Authoritarianism, Markets and Zones of Governance, critically examines the political economy of contemporary agricultural reform in Rwanda....