National Identity and State Formation in Africa
National Identity and State Formation in Africa
This book examines how the interplay between globalization and the assertion of local identities is reshaping the political landscape of Africa. While defending their values against external forces, people simultaneously – and paradoxically – use the interconnectivity of global networks to maximize their particular interests. Focusing on the relation between national identity and state formation, the authors explore the far-reaching consequences of these contradictory dynamics. 

Although Africa shares many common trends with other parts of the world, it also displays distinctive features. A region characterized by the increased mobility of people, goods and ideas challenges some conventional assumptions of statecraft and also highlights the advantages of federalism – not merely as a constitutional option, but as a pragmatic device for managing diversity and holding fragile states together. The book further explores emerging types of state formation in the same political space, as exemplified by the combination of elements of a kingdom, an independent state and a national power base in the province of KwaZulu-Natal and the careful crafting of an alternative state within a state by the Solidarity Movement in South Africa. 

Informed by examples and case studies drawn from different parts of Africa, this book will be of great interest to students and scholars of Africa, politics, sociology, media studies and the social sciences more generally.
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  • March 2021
  • 240 pages
  • 158 x 232 mm / 6 x 9 in
Available Formats
  • Hardback $69.95
  • 9781509545605
  • Paperback $26.95
  • 9781509545612
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  • 9781509545629
Table of Contents
Table of contents:

List of Contributors

List of Acronyms

Chapter 1: Introduction: Identity, Networks and State Formation in Africa
Manuel Castells and Bernard Lategan

Chapter 2: Mobility, Globalisation and the Policing of Citizenship and Belonging in the 21st Century
Francis B. Nyamnjoh

Chapter 3: Federalism in Africa
Eghosa E. Osaghae

Chapter 4: National Identity and State Formation: The Case of the Former UN Trust Territory of the British Southern Cameroons
Carlson Anyangwe

Chapter 5: The Secession of Eritrea from Ethiopia: A Historical Profile
Bahru Zewde

Chapter 6: National Identity of Sudan and the Emergence of South Sudan
Samson S. Wassara

Chapter 7: A New Kind of State for the Nation? Civil Society Mobilisation and White Minority Identity Politics in Post-apartheid South Africa
Danelle van Zyl-Hermann

Chapter 8:  Reimagining the Sporting Nation: Negotiating Identity and Globalisation Amongst ‘Coloured’ Supporters of the New Zealand Rugby Team 
Marizanne and Albert Grundlingh

Chapter 9:  The Persistence of Ethnic Identities in KwaZulu-Natal
Jabulani Sithole

Chapter 10:     Identity-based Conflict in KwaZulu-Natal: Current State and Future Prospects 
Mary de Haas

Chapter 11:  Rethinking Mobility, States, Borders and Identity: Some Concluding Remarks
Bernard Lategan

About the Author
Manuel Castells is Professor Emeritus of Sociology, University of California, Berkeley. He is one of the most widely-cited and influential social scientists in the world today and he has taught at universities in Chile, Brazil, Mexico, Venezuela, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, and Bolivia.

Bernard Lategan is Founder and former Director of the Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Study in South Africa.
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“Few topics in the study of Africa resonate with as much importance as national identity, state formation, and the relation between them. In this original volume, an impressive palette of top scholars engages these issues from different angles and across multiple cases. The result is eye-opening with studies of citizenship, federalism, secessionism and accommodation across the continent contrasted with South Africa’s less conventional approaches to identity politics. Altogether, a path-breaking book.”
Pierre Englebert, Pomona College & Atlantic Council

“This ground-breaking study makes a major contribution to the ongoing debates on the complex interplay between globalisation, identity, and state formation. It provides not only invaluable new insights on the issue, particularly in theoretical and conceptual terms, but also rich empirical illustrations. Its case-studies actually are fascinating accounts of the diverse African experience and, above all, illuminate the conventional and unconventional strategies and responses to the aspiration of national identity.”
Piet Konings, Honorary Fellow, African Studies Centre, University of Leiden, The Netherlands

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