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The Roots of African Conflicts

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Violent conflicts have exacted a heavy toll on Africa's societies, polities and economies. The causes of conflict are too often examined by scholars from the countries that run the proxy wars and sell the arms to fuel them. This volume offers theoretically sophisticated, empirically grounded and compelling analyses of the roots of African conflicts.

'...The studies in these two books seek to advance our understanding of African conflicts by going beyond the conventional and fashionable analyses of Africanist scholarship, often inflected with, if not infected by, Afropessimism, or the simplistic stereotypes conveyed in the western media that is infused with Afrophobia....these conflicts must be understood in comparative perspective, not in isolation. Violent conflict in Africa is indeed part of the human drama, but the tendency to impose universalist models of conflict driven from stylized western experiences or faddish theorising must be resisted... such paradigms lead to poor analysis and bad policy. Conflict is too serious a matter, and its costs too grave, for glib modeling or lazy journalistic speculation uninformed by the histories of, and unmindful of the concrete conditions in, the societies under scrutiny.' - From the introduction by Paul Tiyambe Zeleza

Published in association with OSSREA
North America: Ohio U Press; South Africa: Unisa Press

No US rights


By putting together these two comprehensive and well-researched volumes, Nhema and Zeleza have done a great service to the Africanist community as well as to interested laypersons. [They] should be commended for selecting and editing twenty well-researched and thoughtfully argued contributions to provide us with what is arguably one of the most comprehensive and perceptive treatments to date of conflict and conflict resolution in Africa from both a historical and contemporary perspective. AFRICAN STUDIES REVIEW
The ambitious task established by the editors of uncovering the roots and the solutions to the current conflicts in Africa is excellently addressed by the contributors [...] the variety of views is actually one of the volumes' strengths, providing the reader with a wide spectrum of approaches to the issues at hand, enhanced by the variety of research methods used by the contributors. JOURNAL OF INTERVENTION & STATEBUILDING
Nhema and Zeleza have assembled in these two extraordinary compan volumes [The Roots of African Conflicts and The Resolution of African Conflicts], one of the most comprehensive treatments of conflicts in Africa. The two volumes, with admirable competence, address the multiple causes of conflicts from a historical and contemporary perspective, and creatively attempt to offer solutions to these conflicts that go beyond most contemporary analyses. In the end, both the editors and the contributors point to democratic governance as the best solution to African conflicts. [...] A must read for anyone interested in Africa's peaceful development. - Julius E. Nyang'oro, Professor and Chair, African and Afro-American Studies, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill


First Published: 17 Jan 2008
13 Digit ISBN: 9781847013002
Pages: 256
Size: 22.8 x 15.2
Binding: Paperback
Imprint: James Currey
BIC Class: GTB

Details updated on 05 Oct 2015