By M. Houngnikpo
Matt Houngnikpo examines how family clash, financial stagnation, political instability, poverty and underdevelopment have plagued Africa for many years. He argues reversal of the political, fiscal and social plight of Africa lies in larger regulations, strong governance, and, extra importantly, a brand new form of African chief and citizen.
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Extra info for Africa’s Elusive Quest for Development
Modern archaeology has indeed confirmed that Benin City was extant by the thirteenth century, and that the urban culture of Ife goes back to at least the eleventh century. There was a network of trade routes and regular markets arranged daily to avoid competition among neighboring markets. Another example of how advanced some African civilizations were resides in the Dogon cosmogony in Mali. Modern astronomy and astrology pay tribute to the important role of the sun, the moon, and the stars in Dogon universe.
The emergence of a civil society does not guarantee the development of democracy; however, it is highly unlikely that a viable democracy can survive without a civil society. Civil society is a necessary foundation for democracy . . 28 While an inactive civil society leads to unresponsive states, a politically self-conscious civil society forces the state to remain within its boundaries. 30 However, one needs to measure praise of civil society so as not to overemphasize its role, particularly at the expense of other key actors.
Indeed, as she convincingly demonstrates, the first generation of imperial rulers sought to create institutional features of capitalism but found themselves confronted by an African social and political reality which brooked their every move. 11 Through unfair trading practices, Europeans sought to spread capitalism, but also to lead in technology. Unlike other continents, Europe understood early on that technological breakthroughs were the key to economic growth and development, and spared nothing to reach that goal.
Africa’s Elusive Quest for Development by M. Houngnikpo