The Keys to the Economic Kingdom

State Intervention and the Overcoming of Dependency in Africa before the Crisis of the 1970s

in Theoria
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  • 1 University of KwaZulu-Natal
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Abstract

This article is concerned with reviewing the history of developmental states on the African continent which have been neglected in this theoretical literature. It is important to consider not only successful model developmental states but also partially successful and failed attempts at developmental policies to understand the concept and its place in economic literature. Particular attention is given first to the ambitious examples of Ghana and Tanzania following independence. There is brief discussion of other individual cases, notably Zaïre and Zambia. The last part of the article looks at the developmental aspects of South African economic history between 1910 and 1990. This was apparently a far more successful project but it contained inbuilt flaws that eventually killed off dynamism. The sociopolitical context of racial dominance and separation was a major one of these flaws.

Contributor Notes

Bill Freund was formerly Professor of Economic History at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa where he remains an Emeritus Professor. He is also Visiting Professor at the School of Economics and Business Science at the University of the Witwatersrand. His books include The Making of Contemporary Africa, The African Worker and The African City: A History.

Theoria

A Journal of Social and Political Theory

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