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Patrons, Parties, Political Linkage, and the Birth of Competitive-Authoritarianism in Africa

  • Nic Cheeseman
Abstract:

Few scholars have taught us more about African voters, legislators, and legislatures than Joel Barkan. Drawing on Barkan’s analysis, the first part of this article argues that the African one-party state can be usefully viewed as a competitive-authoritarian system underpinned by a form of political linkage that allows for elements of coercion and competition. Building on this framework, the second part demonstrates that the political linkage structures that emerged in single-party systems such as those of Kenya, Senegal, and Tanzania have played an important role in shaping the dynamics of multiparty politics and the prospects for democratic reform.

Peu de chercheurs nous ont appris davantage sur les électeurs africains, les législateurs et les assemblées législatives que Joel Barkan. S’appuyant sur l’analyse de Barkan, la première partie de cet article fait valoir que l’État Africain, au parti unique, peut être utilement considéré comme un système concurrentiel autoritaire sous-tendue par une forme de lien politique qui permet des éléments de coercition et de concurrence. S’appuyant sur ce model, la deuxième partie montre que les structures du lien politique qui ont émergé dans les systèmes de parti unique comme ceux du Kenya, Senegal, et Tanzanie ont joué un rôle important dans le façonnement de la dynamique du multipartisme et des perspectives de réformes démocratiques.

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References
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African Studies Review
  • ISSN: 0002-0206
  • EISSN: 1555-2462
  • URL: /core/journals/african-studies-review
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