Political Development in Sub-Saharan Africa
Undergraduate: Level 5
Thursday 05 October 2023
Friday 15 December 2023
19 May 2022
Requisites for this module
BA L212 Global Politics,
BA L213 Global Politics (including Placement Year),
BA L214 Global Politics (including Year Abroad)
The module is organized around key concepts and categories from mainstream comparative politics, and comparative methods will be used throughout to analyse the main issues. Yet the course will also demonstrate the continuing relevance of the historical, political and cultural specificities of African politics.
The module will focus on various issues in African politics, such as colonialism , independence, authoritarian breakdown, democratization, corruption, human rights and democratic consolidation.
The course aims to introduce students to the main features of contemporary African politics. By building on a comparative approach, this course serves as an introduction for those who are unfamiliar with the history, politics and societies of the region.
The course will challenge students to analyse complex problems in African politics and encourage them to provide informed arguments on these matters.
By the end of the course students will be able to:
• Think critically about the political reality in countries of Sub-Saharan Africa within a broad historical & comparative perspective;
• Develop a more comprehensive understanding and familiarity with the main theoretical and empirical contributions of comparative politics to the study of Sub-Saharan Africa;
• Identify the key issues in the contemporary democratic politics of Sub-Saharan Africa, and apply the methods of comparative politics to clarify and analyse them;
• Identify the political, historical and socio-economic roots of the governability issues affecting countries of the region at the beginning of the 21st century;
• Write and orally communicate clear and well-researched observation about the substantive questions raised in the course
No additional information available.
This module will be taught over 2 hours per week
Alex Thomson (2016) An introduction to African politics
. Fourth edition. Abingdon: Routledge. Available at: https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/universityofessex-ebooks/detail.action?docID=4516779
How to Write About Africa | Binyavanga Wainaina | Granta
(no date). Available at: https://granta.com/how-to-write-about-africa/
Edwards, Z. (2018) ‘No Colonial Working Class, No Post-Colonial Development: a Comparative-Historical Analysis of Two Oil-Rich Countries’, Studies in Comparative International Development
, 53(4), pp. 477–499. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12116-017-9255-9
Nyamnjoh, F.B. (2012) ‘“Potted Plants in Greenhouses”: A Critical Reflection on the Resilience of Colonial Education in Africa’, Journal of Asian and African Studies
, 47(2), pp. 129–154. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1177/0021909611417240
NAHOMI ICHINO, NOAH L. NATHAN (2013) ‘Crossing the Line: Local Ethnic Geography and Voting in Ghana’, The American Political Science Review
, 107(2), pp. 344–361. Available at: https://www-jstor-org.uniessexlib.idm.oclc.org/stable/43654018
Stephen N. Ndegwa (1997) ‘Citizenship and Ethnicity: An Examination of Two Transition Moments in Kenyan Politics’, The American Political Science Review
, 91(3), pp. 599–616. Available at: https://www-jstor-org.uniessexlib.idm.oclc.org/stable/2952077
The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course.
The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students.
Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list
Assessment items, weightings and deadlines
|Coursework / exam
Exam format definitions
- Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
- In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
- In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
- In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary,
for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.
Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Florian Kern, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dr Florian Kern
Module Supervisor: Dr Florian Kern - email@example.com
/ Module Administrator: Jasini Hobbs - firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr Stefano Pagliari
City, University of London
Senior Lecturer in International Politics
Available via Moodle
Of 16 hours, 16 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s), module, or event type.
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