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Four Journeys of Capital and Their Consequences for Africa

Part of the Palgrave Handbooks in IPE book series (PHIPE)

Abstract

The political economy of Africa is fundamentally a tale of how the continents and its people were dragged into the evolving and unfolding global coloniality through such processes as enslavement, mercantilism and colonialism. This is the tale of entrapment of Africa which captures the paradoxical situation of the continent—that of “simultaneous involvement and marginalization” in the modern world system, modern global order, modern knowledge economy, and modern world economy. Entrapment highlights how a colonized people exist as a human species which have been dragged kicking and screaming into the nexus of the modern world system, modern global order, modern knowledge economy, modern world economy and forcible conversion to Christianity. What emerged from this is an invidious position not just of being pushed to the periphery but also of being insiders who have been pushed outside of the very human ecumene/family.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    Ibid., xi.

  2. 2.

    Ibid., 9.

  3. 3.

    Walter D. Mignolo, “On Pluriversality and Multipolar World Order: Decoloniality after Decolonization; Dewesternization after the Cold War,” in Constructing the Pluriverse: The Geopolitics of Knowledge, edited by Bernd Beiter (Durham; London: Duke University Press, 2018), 97.

  4. 4.

    Ibid., 98.

  5. 5.

    Ibid., 155.

  6. 6.

    Ralph A. Austen, African Economic History (London: James Currey, 1987).

  7. 7.

    Sabelo J. Ndlovu-Gatsheni, “The Entrapment of the Global South in Global Coloniality,” unpublished paper, keynote address delivered at the International Conference on Global Crises, Global Change, Westminster Undergraduate Conference, Westminster College, United States of America, March 30 to April 1, 2017.

  8. 8.

    Eduard Galeano, Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent (New York: Monthly Review Press 1997), 2–3.

  9. 9.

    Paget Henry Caliban’s Reason: Introducing Afro-Caribbean Philosophy. (New York; London: Routledge, 2000): 4.

  10. 10.

    Ibid.

  11. 11.

    Oliver Cox, Caste, Class and Race: A Study in Social Dynamics (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1948); Frantz Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, (New York: Grove Press 1968); Cedric J. Robinson, Black Marxism: The Making of the Black Radical Tradition (London: Zed Press. 1983); Peter P. Ekeh, Colonialism and Social Structure (Ibadan: University of Ibadan Press, 1983); and Anibal Quijano, “Coloniality of Power, Eurocentrism, and Latin America,” Nepantla: Views from South 1, no. 3 (2000): 533–580.

  12. 12.

    Jack Goody, The Theft of History (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996): 14.

  13. 13.

    Sylvia Wynter, “Unsettling the Coloniality of Being/Power/Truth/Freedom: Towards the Human After Man, Its Overrepresentation—An Argument,” New Centennial Review 3, no. 3 (Fall 2003): 257–337; and Nelson Maldonado-Torres, “On the Coloniality of Being: Contributions to the Development of a Concept,” Cultural Studies 21, nos. 2–3 (March/May 2007): 240–270.

  14. 14.

    Mahmood Mamdani, Define and Rule: Native as Political Identity (Johannesburg: Wits University Press, 1996), 15.

  15. 15.

    Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Secure the Base: Making Africa Visible in the Globe (London, New York, Calcutta: Seagull Books, 2016), 31.

  16. 16.

    Marx quoted in Robert C. Tucker, ed., The Marx-Engels Reader (New York: W. W. Norton, 1978), 476–477.

  17. 17.

    Aime Cesaire, Discourse on Colonialism, translated Joan Pinkham (New York: Monthly Review Press, 2000), 43.

  18. 18.

    Ramon Grosfoguel, “Del ‘Extractivismo Economico’ Al ‘Extractvismo Epistemico’ Y Al ‘Extractivism Ontologico’: Una Forma Desstructiva De Conocer, Ser Y Estar En El Mundo,” Tabula Rasa: Bogota-Colombia 24 (2016): 123–143.

  19. 19.

    Cesaire, Discourse on Colonialism, 43.

  20. 20.

    All quotes Ibid.

  21. 21.

    Ali A. Mazrui, The Africans: A Triple Heritage (London: BBC Publications, 1986), 12.

  22. 22.

    Ibid.

  23. 23.

    Ibid., 13.

  24. 24.

    Thiong’o, Decolonizing the Mind, 5.

  25. 25.

    Mazrui, The Africans, 12.

  26. 26.

    Ibid.

  27. 27.

    Ibid.

  28. 28.

    All quotations in Ramon Grosfoguel, “The Epistemic Decolonial Turn: Beyond Political-Economy Paradigms,” Cultural Studies 21, nos. 2–3 (March/May 2007): 216.

  29. 29.

    Ibid.

  30. 30.

    Ibid.

  31. 31.

    Sabelo J. Ndlovu-Gatsheni, “Genealogies of Coloniality and Implications for Africa’s Development,” Africa Development, 40, no. 3 (2015): 22.

  32. 32.

    Malyn Newitt, The Portuguese in West Africa, 1415–1670: A Documentary History (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010).

  33. 33.

    Carrie Gibson, Empire’s Crossroads: A History of the Caribbean From Columbus to the Present Day (London: Macmillan, 2014), 2.

  34. 34.

    Newitt, The Portuguese in West Africa, 1415–1670: 1.

  35. 35.

    Walter Rodney, How Europe Underdeveloped Africa (1972; reprint, London: Verso, 2018), 140.

  36. 36.

    Christopher Kinsey, Corporate Soldiers and International Security: The Rise of Private Military Companies (London: Routledge, 2006), 38.

  37. 37.

    Kwame Nimako and Glenn Willemsen, The Dutch Atlantic: Slavery, Abolition and Emancipation (London: Polity Press, 2011), 14.

  38. 38.

    Sampie Terreblanche, Western Empires, Christianity, and the Inequalities Between the West and the Rest, 1500–2010 (Johannesburg: Penguin Books, 2014), 220.

  39. 39.

    Ibid., 8.

  40. 40.

    Ibid., 202.

  41. 41.

    Ibid., 198–99.

  42. 42.

    Grosfoguel and Cervantes-Rodriguez 2002: xii.

  43. 43.

    Terreblanche, Western Empires, 75.

  44. 44.

    Ibid., 214.

  45. 45.

    Ibid., 216.

  46. 46.

    Ibid., 218.

  47. 47.

    Nimako and Willemsen, The Dutch Atlantic, 20.

  48. 48.

    Terreblanche, Western Empires, 104.

  49. 49.

    Wendy Brown, Walled States, Waning Sovereignty (New York: Zone Books, 2010), 21.

  50. 50.

    Nimako and Willemsen, The Dutch Atlantic, 20.

  51. 51.

    Adekeye Adebajo, The Curse of Berlin: Africa after the Cold War (Scottsville: University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2010).

  52. 52.

    Also see Sabelo J. Ndlovu-Gatsheni, “The Entrapment of Africa within the Global Colonial Matrices of Power: Eurocentrism, Coloniality, and Deimperialization in the Twenty-First Century,” Journal of Developing Societies 29, no. 4 (December 2013): 331–353; and Ndlovu-Gatsheni, “Genealogies of Coloniality.”

  53. 53.

    Mahmood Mamdani, Good Muslim, Bad Muslim: America, the Cold War, and the Roots of Terror (New York: Pantheon Books; Dakar: CODESRIA Books, 2013).

  54. 54.

    Samir Amin, Unequal Development: An Essay on the Social Formations of Peripheral Capitalism (Hassocks: Harvester, 1976), 317–333.

  55. 55.

    Bernstein 2005: 68.

  56. 56.

    Amin, Unequal Development.

  57. 57.

    Henry Bernstein, “Rural Land and Land Conflicts in Sub-Saharan Africa,” in Reclaiming the Land: The Resurgence of Rural Movements in Africa, Asia and Latin America (London; New York: Zed Books, 2005), 69.

  58. 58.

    Ibid.

  59. 59.

    Ibid., 70.

  60. 60.

    John M. Hobson, The Eurocentric Conception of World Politics: Western International Theory, 1750–2010 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012), 185.

  61. 61.

    Grosfoguel, “The Epistemic Decolonial Turn.”

  62. 62.

    Mamdani, Good Muslim, Bad Muslim.

  63. 63.

    Fukuyama quoted in Ndlovu-Gatsheni, “The Entrapment of Africa,”16. Also see Ndlovu-Gatsheni, “Genealogies of Coloniality,” 34.

  64. 64.

    Thiong’o, Secure the Base: 24.

  65. 65.

    Onuoha “A ‘Rising Africa’ in a Resource-Rich Context: Change, Continuity and Implications for Development,” Current Sociology 64, no. 2 (2016): 282.

  66. 66.

    Thiong’o, Secure the Base: 23.

  67. 67.

    Mignolo, “On Pluriversality and Multipolar World Order,” 105.

  68. 68.

    Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Moving the Centre: The Struggles for Cultural Freedoms (Oxford: James Currey, 1993).

  69. 69.

    Mignolo, “On Pluriversality and Multipolar World Order,” 105.

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Ndlovu-Gatsheni, S.J. (2020). Four Journeys of Capital and Their Consequences for Africa. In: Oloruntoba, S., Falola, T. (eds) The Palgrave Handbook of African Political Economy. Palgrave Handbooks in IPE. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-38922-2_3

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