- Publisher: Cambridge University Press
- Online publication date: March 2019
- Print publication year: 2019
- Online ISBN: 9781108594820
- DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108594820
Two aspects of contemporary urban life in Africa are often described as sources of political change: the emergence of a large urban middle class and high levels of ethnic diversity and inter-ethnic social contact. Many expected that these factors would help spark a transition away from ethnic competition and clientelism toward more programmatic elections. Focusing on urban Ghana, this book shows that the growing middle class and high levels of ethnic diversity are not having the anticipated political effects. Instead, urban Ghana is stuck in a trap: clientelism and ethnic voting persist in many urban neighborhoods despite changes to the socio-economic characteristics and policy preferences of voters. Through a unique examination of intra-urban variation in patterns of electoral competition, Nathan explains why this trap exists, demonstrates its effects on political behavior, and explores how new democracies like Ghana can move past it.
Leonardo R. Arriola - Director of the Center for African Studies, University of California, Berkeley
Rachel Beatty Riedl - Northwestern University
Daniel N. Posner - James S. Coleman Professor of International Development, University of California, Los Angeles
Erik Wibbels - Robert O. Keohane Professor of Political Science, Duke University
Robert H. Bates - Eaton Professor of the Science of Government, Harvard University
Source: Foreign Affairs
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