© 1981

African Politics

  • Authors

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Introduction

    1. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 1-16
  3. Political Forces

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 17-17
    2. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 19-45
    3. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 46-78
  4. The Political Ideologies

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 79-79
    2. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 81-109
    3. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 110-166
  5. Political Structures

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 167-167
    2. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 169-223
    3. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 224-261
  6. Political Action

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 263-263
    2. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 265-297
    3. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 298-316
    4. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 317-337
    5. Pierre François Gonidec
      Pages 338-353
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 355-367

About this book


To an increasing extent, nationals of Third World countries are protesting against the tendency of foreign theoreticians and observers to study their problems - political problems in particular - in terms of concepts and theories established on the basis of European experiences. For instance, the Egyptian Abdel Malek I in La diaiectique sociaie, writes: 'At the starting point, whose broad lines we sketch here, there is evidence of inadequation, deriving from the fact of difference. Inadequation of the conceptual system of the social sciences. Differences between Western societie- which have provided the larger part of the analytical material for the con­ ceptual elaboration and establishment of theoretical systems in different disciplines - on the one hand, and non-Western societies (those of Asia, Africa and Latin America) on the other hand. ' This does not mean that the author impugns universalism and that he advocates enclosing the Third World in a sort of intellectual ghetto, overemphasizing its specificity, and constituting as it were 'reserves' designed to highlight the exotic aspect for the benefit of foreigners. 2 On the contrary, what he takes sociology to task for is its insufficiently universal and universalizing nature. This being so, his aim is to make concepts more universal and to rebuild theory with the help of reshaped concepts. Abel Malek's criticisms are largely justified. There is indeed a certain eurocentricity in the theories elaborated by political scientists, even if they deny it.


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