Saints and Politicians
Donal B. Cruise O'Brien, O'Brien, Reader in African Political Studies School of Oriental and African Studies Donal B Cruise O'Brien
Cambridge University Press, Jan 23, 1975 - History - 213 pages
Political life among the Wolof (the largest and most powerful of Senegal's 'tribal' groups) is the principal theme of this collection of essays. The focus of study is on African political leadership, in towns and villages. Within the constraints of alien control or influence, it is argued, cultural and organisational barriers have consistently allowed a wide range of initiative to African leaders and communities in a creative and flexible adjustment to new and unfamiliar demands. Exploration of this African initiative in various contexts suggests a complex, fascinating pattern of cultural and structural interaction. The multidisciplinary approach to politics in these essays will interest historians and social anthropologists as well as political scientists. These studies are indeed relevant to any student of the problems of 'underdeveloped' societies involved in the modern state. Parts of the essays have been published elsewhere, but all have been extensively revised, updated and integrated to a coherent pattern of analysis.
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