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Democracy in Ghana
Everyday Politics in Urban Africa

  • Publication planned for: July 2019
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781316513309

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  • Rapid urbanization and political liberalization is changing the nature of African politics and societies. This book develops a framework for the study of democracy and development that emphasizes informal institutions and the politics of belonging in the context of daily life, in contrast to the formal and electoral paradigms that dominate the social sciences. Based on fifteen months of field research including ethnographic observation, focus group interviews, and original quantitative survey analysis in Ghana, this book intervenes in major debates about public goods provision, civic participation, ethnic politics and democratization, and the future of urban sustainability in a rapidly changing world. By developing new understandings of democracy, as well as providing novel explanations for good governance and development in poor urban neighborhoods, the book transcends the narrative of a failing and corrupt Africa and charts a new way forward for the study of democracy and development.

    • Proposes a new view of democracy and development in urban Africa
    • Sheds light on the everyday politics that are so important to African societies
    • Develops a comparative research design and a model of urbanization that offers new insight into the patterns of political development in Africa's growing cities
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    Product details

    • Publication planned for: July 2019
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781316513309
    • length: 328 pages
    • dimensions: 234 x 158 x 21 mm
    • weight: 0.59kg
    • contains: 6 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Democracy, development, and daily life
    Part I. The Roots of Urban Politics in Africa:
    2. Leadership and civic life in Urban Africa
    3: The political history of urbanization in Ghana
    Part II. Everyday Politics in Urban Ghana:
    4. The construction of legitimate authority
    5. Distributive politics for an urbanizing continent
    6. The organization of civic life
    7. Everyday politics in urban Africa.

  • Author

    Jeffrey W. Paller, University of San Francisco
    Jeffrey W. Paller is Assistant Professor of Politics at the University of San Francisco. He has conducted fieldwork in Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, and South Africa and his work is published in Polity, African Studies Review, Africa Today, the Journal of Modern African Studies, Africa Spectrum, and Current History. His dissertation won the African Politics Conference Group-Lynne Rienner Best Dissertation in African Politics Award. He is secretary for the African Politics Conference Group and chair of the Comparative Urban Politics Related Group for the American Political Science Association. He curates the weekly news bulletin, This Week in Africa.

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