How Europe Underdeveloped Africa By Walter Rodney

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    How Europe Underdeveloped Africa.

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    INTRODUCTION

    How Europe Underdeveloped Africa is a book written by Walter Rodney, which takes the view that Africa was deliberately exploited and underdeveloped by European colonial regimes.This book was groundbreaking in that it was among the first to bring a new perspective to the question of underdevelopment in Africa. Rodney’s analysis went far beyond the heretofore accepted approach in the study of Third World underdevelopment and it was met with heavy criticism.

    It is based on the outlined issues sketched above that this book was written. The piece of literature is arranged in chapters from one to six with thought provoking and are stimulating issue at each chapter. A post script as well as a biography of the author is attached at the latter part of the literature. A chapter by chapter method of review have been adopted to do justice to this work for an incisive appreciation.
    The conceptualization of the notion of development and underdevelopment took the central stage in the first chapter, as the author attempted a penetrating analysis into the duo concepts in order to demystify their justification of capitalism which myopically conceives economic development with little or no consideration for human social development.
    Rodney had determined that the only path to true human development and liberation for the majority of the people of his country was through the transformation of their own lives in a struggle to replace and reshape the neo-colonialist government that dominated their society and prescribed their existence.

     

    DESCRIPTION

    How Europe Underdeveloped Africa is a book written by Walter Rodney, which takes the view that Africa was deliberately exploited and underdeveloped by European colonial regimes.
    Rodney argues that a combination of power politics and economic exploitation of Africa by Europeans led to the poor state of African political and economic development evident in the late 20th century. In the book's preface, Rodney praises the state of Tanzania, which had pursued the sort of Marxist political ideology that he advocated.
    First published in 1972, the book was enormously influential in the study of African history. In the late 1990s many academics became more sharply critical of the book's central thesis and argued that the book oversimplifies the complex historical forces surrounding the colonial era.
    This book was groundbreaking in that it was among the first to bring a new perspective to the question of underdevelopment in Africa. Rodney's analysis went far beyond the heretofore accepted approach in the study of Third World underdevelopment and it was met with heavy criticism.
    Rodney had determined that the only path to true human development and liberation for the majority of the people of his country was through the transformation of their own lives in a struggle to replace and reshape the neo-colonialist government that dominated their society and prescribed their existence.
     

    REVIEWS

    "Really liked how Rodney laid out a lot of the mechanisms of underdevelopment, like the altering of trade routes, and how he spells out a lot of the hard numbers of underdevelopment and imperialism. His theory or framing was hit and miss- I liked his view on active underdevelopment and his framing of that sometimes, but he takes kind of a hard Marxist view on linear societal development, which isn't really for me."
    -Camden Goetz
    "Deeply touching! Gave me a real insight of the relationship between Europe and Africa..."
    -Kar De kouss
    "An extremely good analysis of African politics!"
    -Joan Muller
     

    TABLE OF CONTENTS

    Chapter One
    Some Questions on Development

    What is Development
    What is Underdevelopment?
    Chapter Two
    How Africa Developed Before the Coming of the Europeans up to the 15th Century

    General Over-View
    Concrete Examples
    Chapter Three
    Africa's Contribution to European Capitalist Development – the Pre-Colonial Period

    How Europe Became the Dominant Section of a World- Wide Trade System
    Africa's contribution to the economy and beliefs of early capitalist Europe
    Chapter Four
    Europe and the Roots of African Underdevelopment — to 1885

    The European Slave Trade as a Basic Factor in African Underdevelopment
    Technological Stagnation and Distortion of the African Economy in the Pre-Colonial Epoch
    Continuing Politico-Military Developments in Africa – 1500 to 1885
    Chapter Five
    Africa's Contribution to the Capitalist

    Development of Europe — the Colonial Period
    Expatriation of African Surplus Under Colonialism
    The Strengthening of Technological and Military Aspects of Capitalism
    Chapter Six
    Colonialism as a System for Underdeveloping Africa

    The Supposed Benefits of Colonialism to Africa
    Negative Character of the Social, Political and Economic Consequences
    Education for Underdevelopment
    Development by Contradiction.

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