Democracy and Good Governance, ICASSRT, 1999

  Civil Society’s Contribution to Democratic Consolidation in Africa 

Benedict Nantang Jua 
University of Buea

Despite the fact that scholars such as Hegel and Alexis de Tocqueville celebrated the role of civil society in the growth of liberal economies, this concept remained in a paradigmatic blind spot for a long time thereafter. Several reasons begin to contribute to this. In Europe, the crisis that presently confronts the welfare state had not set in and socialist states largely satisfied the (re-)distributive functions. Elsewhere, especially in post-colonial Africa, people were prevented by a culture of silence from making demands on or engaging the state, despite its glaring incapacity. As a result, the state occupied the center stage in both the academy and development field. Voices like those of Antonio Gramsci emphasizing the importance of this concept were drowned or suffered from discursive marginalisation. Dissatisfaction with the state set in as a result of the «maximax problematique» where maximum available resources did not permit the state to begin to satisfy minimal needs. This first became evident in Eastern Europe. People therefore opted «to live with the truth» rather to continue «living a lie» in the words of Vaclav Havel. This option helped to bring back into sharp focus the concept of civil society. Its centrality in development discourse could be discerned from the fact that by 1995, the World Bank organized a retreat for its staff in the Washington D.C. vicinity where they discussed the concept. Even the International Monetary Fund (IMF) which is obsessed with macroeconomic indicators has reluctantly accepted the heuristic value of this concept (1). 
But just as the emancipatory potential of civil society was being brought into sharp relief, voices doubting its relevance in the African context emerged. Emphasizing the historical context in which civil society emerged, Jean Francois Bayart claims that «In Africa, there are no one-dimensional or homogenous societies, but rather a collection of time-spaces like so many poles, created by various social actors. The first uncertainty, therefore, is whether there is any political possibility, let alone demographic, economic or technological, of unifying these time-spaces for overcoming their discontinuities, a possibility which requires the emergence of an ‘organizational principle’ capable of challenging absolute state control» (2). History has proven Bayart wrong. Today, the problem in Africa is not the lack but the possibilities of thickening civil society. 
Granting this, there are still definitional problems to be overcome in the African context. What does civil society mean? Just the other day (26 November 1999), I heard a journalist from Radio South Africa on their program "Channel Africa" claim that the soldiers had launched a full scale attack on the Kivu province controlled by Jean Claude Mbemba. Supposedly, they were killing members of civil society! This set me wondering whether people carried any external markers to show that they belonged to this society. No doubt, this inheres from the tendency in Africa to confound society with civil society. Even states participate in the muddling of this concept. In most post-colonial states, the discursive neutralization of the population, that is their disempowerment, through the contraction of political space enabled the state to give an operational definition to this concept. In Cameroon, for example, during the Tripartite Conference and the Constitutional Revision process, the representatives of civil society were chosen by the state qua Cameroon People’s Democratic Movement (CPDM). Surprisingly, the representatives were members of the CPDM. In effect, they were in the state and civil society at the same time. But Hegel and Gramsci conceive of civil society as a source of opposition to the state. For de Tocqueville, civil society constituted autonomous intermediate associations that could stop the state from arrogating to itself more powers than the citizen were willing to grant it (3). Given this definition of civil society as a counter weight to the state, the practice of the Cameroonian state could not therefore be correct or be seen only as a continuation of the unimodal mode of representation that characterized the one party state. For the purpose of this paper, civil society is defined as an «arena where manifold social movements… and civic organizations from all classes… attempt to constitute themselves so that they can express themselves and advance their interests’ (4). Undoubtedly, this articulation and aggregation may involve engagement with or disengagement from the state. 
Today, I have been asked to talk on the decentralization and «responsabilisation» of civil society in Africa. Seen against the backdrop of the foregoing definition, I would state, ab initio, that I am not comfortable with the formulation of this topic, since civil society may contribute to human interconnections within a work unit but not necessarily between working units. With a view to enhancing its effectiveness, one should be concerned with giving that society a macro-dimension. Small is not always beautiful. This being the case, it would therefore enable the African state that still aspires to omnipotence to be a Leviathan and not just a lame one. Emphasis should be on promoting «dialogic reciprocity which allows for an enabling of validity claims, the non-coercive force of the better argument (5). I believe that «responsabilisation» of whatever group comes only as a result of the growth of this interactive competence. That is why it is referred to as civil and is ipso facto responsible. Denuded of its apparent innocence, this topic is grounded in a paternalistic ethos that stands out in the biographic development of the African state. It is this ethos that the common man is contesting. Given his decision «to live with the truth», he is no longer part of the standing reserve (6) to be used for instrumental value. Consequentially, he cannot be relegated to the bottom of society’s symbolic ladder where symbolic, if not physical violence can easily be meted out on him. 
Not being privy to authorial intentions, I would want to assume that the emphasis here was meant to be on the impact of the mode of state incorporation on the recursive relationship, a mutually transforming relationship, which exists between the state and society. Basically, there are two modes of incorporation and, each producing a different effect on the state-society relations. These are integrated domination with the state at the center of relations, establishing a broad power and acting in a coherent fashion and dispersed domination, that leads to a limited hegemony within an arena as neither the state nor the any other social force achieves countrywide domination and in which parts of the state may be pulled in different directions (7). Focus on the mode of incorporation enables us to recover the common man in the debate as the state no longer provides the prevailing moral order. Reminiscent of Gidden’s theory of structuration, neither the human agent nor the society or institutions have primacy in this relationship. This paradigm, I believe takes us beyond that which anthromorphizes the state, thereby giving it an ontological status, by portraying it as a unitary and organic actor. In short, it enables a new anthropology of the state as it permits us to disaggregate the state, investigating the different levels where direct engagement with society occurs with a view to determining how these multiple reactions contribute to stability/democracy. Focusing on struggles in these multiple arenas or spaces that include civil society as well as more limited arena conflicts would also lead one to uncover the nature of the interaction between state and society. For our present purpose, I am suggesting that the form of civil society may differ with the mode of incorporation adopted by the state. 
The foregoing, however, is not to deny that civil society at local levels can begin to influence policy at the level. Its impact can be felt mostly in the realm of socio-economic activity that affects the everyday lives of people rather than in the political realm with which they engage only on an episodic basis (8). Evidential of this is the decision of the Nso people in Bui Division of the North-West Province in Cameroon to chase the water authority (SNEC) out of this division. Following this they created the Kumbo Water Authority (KWA) to manage the system. The state represented by its frontline authorities seemingly acquiesced to this. Its failure to impose its domination in this circumscribed arena deprived it of resources and support that it could carry into other arenas of struggle. Conversely, victory gave the people confidence to continue fraying away at the power of the state, appropriating parts of it through a process of creeping incrementalism. (9) 
Several reasons account for this successful challenge to state authority. Firstly, it can be explicated by the fact that front-line officials find it easier to throw in their lot with the local people. Secondly, according to some of these officials, they are interested not in politics but in their paychecks that enable them to feed their families. Thirdly, and above all, it is plausible that state concession is prompted by the fact that these struggles at the margins are not considered as key struggles. As such they do not readily spillover to other arenas, thereby contributing to reformatting state-society interactions. But civil society has to engage the state not only in marginal but also vital space. Granting this, any attempt to privilege only decentralization would just help to exacerbate some of these problems. As I see it, the emphasis should be on flexibility that foregrounds both decentralization and shifting federations with a view to benefiting from both the advantages of solidarity and scale. 

Problems of Decentralization 
The existence of civil society in Africa, it has been conceded, can be traced back to the period of the colonial state. Though colonization was basically a violating experience, it cannot be denied that it provided opportunities for the African to acquire cultural capital necessary to function within this state. Schools inculcated new values in the African. Endowed with a double consciousness (African and European), as a result thereof, he became a hybrid. Most voluntary associations such as labor unions and professional associations formed during this period to protect the interests of the African, exposed to the vicissitudes of the capitalist economy, (for example commercialization and urbanization), were led by these hybrids. Not surprisingly, these associations played a vanguard role in protesting not only the indignities of colonial rule but in calling for independence. 
Despite the motley nature of these associations, they worked collectively for the independence of their states. Eric Hobsbawm notes that "there is nothing like an imperial people to make a population conscious of its collective existence". (10) However, the exit of the common enemy led to the struggle for the control of the new states, now seen as a mode of production. Because of this perception, the struggle for the leadership that was recruited from among the associations formed in the colonial period was fierce. The implications were disturbing, especially as Kwame Anthony Appiah notes that independence left Africa with states looking for nations. (11) But imagining a nation was difficult for the tribe or ethnic group remained the «most effective socio-political agent in Africa». (12) The resilience of ethnicity helped to fray social relations in the mutli-ethnic states and thereby worked against the development of civil society. 
In this context, one witnesses a corruption of the spirit among the intellectuals that played an instrumental role in nurturing civil society. That is, they become organic intellectuals, more concerned with the politics of the belly. This is the treason of the clerks. Granted, Bourdieu argues that there is no one single role for the intellectual; considerations of their economic and political interests determine their political takings. In Africa, their identification with the state is reinforced by the fact that only state, that is the sole source of employment can guarantee their upward mobility. This consideration partly accounts for the inability of the African intellectual to articulate an organizational principle necessary for the development of a viable civil society. 
As indicated above, ethnicity has helped to compound the problem as the state is seen only through ethnic blinkers. That is, the leader of the state who is its reification is always perceived as committed to promoting a monoethnic tendency. Given this perception, intellectuals from his ethnic group support him while those from other groups are more apt to promote an oppositional consciousness. Since ethnicity is used as the legitimation principle, it is not surprising that intellectuals in this context cannot come up with an organizational principle for developing a viable civil society. Debates are always displaced to this terrain. 
Cameroon in the early 1990s can serve as a case in point. Instead of focusing on the democratization process and the merits of the sovereign national conference (SNC) in fostering the process, intellectuals traded accusations among themselves for privileging ethnicity in the debate rather than examining the normative superiority of this mode of governance. They became, in the words of Ndiva Kofele Kale, ethnic entrepreneurs. Principally, two schools of thought developed. On the one hand, Anglo-Bamilekes were accused of fanning the flames of ethnofascism, which Mono Ndzana defined as the auto-marginalisation of an ethnic group that subsequently mobilizes itself for the conquest of political power while nursing sado-masochist intentions toward the other. In reaction, the Bamilekes accused Ndzana and his colleagues of Monofascism. Noteworthy is the fact that the church hierarchy and the press were also divided along these same political fault lines.  In this context, attempts to refocus the debate by insisting that democratization and the proposed SNC did not index any ethnic group but the «tribu du ventre» did not have any political purchase. It is largely as a result of this that programmatic issues have been relegated to the background in the democratic debate in Cameroon. 
Ere some of you begin to make apologies for ethnic groups, let me admit that there is a flip side to this argument. Historical evidence shows that they have also played a positive role in the development of civil society in Africa. No one would fail to acknowledge their role in the struggle for the first independence of Africa. Contradiction arise only in the role that they have played in the post-colonial state. Bent on capturing power that they see as a zero-sum game or accessing the state, ethnic entrepreneurs have used these groups as a bargaining chip. Worse still a look at current history shows that most political parties that litter the African political landscape are no more than ethnic pressure groups. Generally, they have failed to form cross-cutting associations that would enable them to be seen as part of civil society that expresses functional concerns. Focus on ethnic groups therefore reveals a contradictory moment in the elaboration of the civil society project. Contradictory moments are those in which the past expressions of civil society’s potential are subsequently identified as their nemesis. 
In the African context, the persistence of the economy of affection accounts for this contradiction. Essentially, this means that traditional social relations are rooted in the moral expectation that members of extended families would support one another. The «invisible organizations» in this network of mutual obligation may be difficult to discern to the untrained eye because they are «ad hoc and informal rather than regular and formalised". (13) As a result of this, public morality in Africa can be characterized as «primordial» rather than «civic». That is, it is derived from the particularistic values of the economy of affection rather than from universalistic values embodied in constitutional law and rational bureaucracy. Political actors tend to regard access to the state as an opportunity for personal and community advancement. «A person who can demonstrate generosity at public expense is not only forgiven by his people but is also seen as having acted correctly». (14) This mindset which celebrates the virtues of the politics of the belly is certainly not an enabling condition for the development of civil society. 
The lack of autonomous economic classes had impeded the development of civil society in Africa. For the most part, the state provides only access into the monetary economy. As everyone seeks to penetrate the state, a true petty bourgeoisie (business) cannot develop. Since the nascent bourgeoisie depends on the state for its economic survival, its energies are directed toward capturing and maintaining state power. The state having been converted into a mode of production, the class that has captured it is extremely reticent to introduce new forms of political accountability required under the democratic mode of governance. Their immediate interest is therefore promoted by deterring rather than promoting the chances for political competition. State predominance in the economic realm is not therefore an enabling condition for the development of civil society. This is supported by evidence, in Southern Africa and Nigeria for example, where the vibrant civil society has developed as a result of a thriving private sector. 
In some countries where civil society has developed, it has not undergone a thickening process due to lack of funding. Associations have folded because of poor organization and only a handful of committed people do most of the work. Thus, these associations have failed to institutionalize themselves. The Cameroon Public Servants Union (CAPSU) and the Cameroon Union of Contract Officers and State Agents(SYNCAAE), are cases in point. Formed in the early 1990s, these associations served as pressure groups for state workers committed to improving their material conditions as well as working for the introduction of a liberal-democratic system in Cameroon. To this end, they deplored the drastic cut in salaries, decrying that the accompanying measures designed to absorb the shock were «cosmetic» «inadequate» «ineffective» and had no impact on the miserable conditions of state employees». Intent on shaping policy, they questioned whether the maintenance of a large cabinet with over fifty ministers (the largest since independence) with fifteen generals in peace time for a population of 12 million people and the creation of multiple and unnecessary administrative units which call  for more expenditure for a government in time of crisis is sure proof that the government has no financial crunch. (15) 
Even if the state saw this declaration as having only a nuisance value, the capability of the Unions to blackmail it became obvious in December 1993 when they called for a strike action. Unfortunately, CAPSU and SYNCAAE did not have depth and resilience of a deeply structured organization. Their vulnerability was mainly attributable to the liquidity squeeze that they faced. No doubt, the reluctance of the members to pay their dues contributed to this situation. The government was conscious of this fact and therefore used symbolic violence, luring the leadership with money, to penetrate the movements. And the first signs of defection among the leadership prompted their demobilization. In apportioning blames, members who had defaulted on the payment of their dues exonerated themselves while putting the blame solely on their leadership. 
Not even the trade union movement has been insulated from government interference as was demonstrated in the case of the Confederation of Cameroon Trade Unions(CCTU), despite its semblance of autonomy. That its independence was a sham was proven when the government intervened in its electoral process to make sure that Etame Ndedi, a member of the Central, Committee of the ruling CPDM was elected as President. This went contrary to the principle of functional representation that guarantees democratization in the economic realm. His pre-occupation with protecting the strategic interests of the party rather than the corporate interests of the workers became apparent when he sacked Louis Sombes, the Secretary General of the Union for supporting the December 1993 civil servants strike. Control of this union that could have a stranglehold on the state was important. With a view to guaranteeing this, the state promoted the creation of a rival union. As the Minister of Territorial Administration stated in a confidential note to the President of the Republic, «I think the birth of this new trade union organization will help to counteract the activities of the leaders of the CCTU who, in the majority, are members of the radical opposition».(16) Though named the Union of Free Trade Unions of Cameroon (USLC), its partisan coloration could easily be discerned from the declaration of its Vice President, Salome Tsogo. «We are going to fight tooth and nail to forestall the activities of the CCTU, which is in the pay of the radical opposition and some United States backed institutions» and «the success of the USLC will constitute a victory for the CPDM». (17) 
I am also skeptical of the effectiveness of civil society that functions only at the local level because of the tendency of African states to confound two concepts –decentralization and deconcentration of powers. Whereas an examination of their constitutions may reveal to us something about the nature of the states, I would submit it is more important to make the distinction between what Weber referred to as the «ethic of conviction» and the «ethnic of responsibility». The former, foregrounds the good intentions of the agent rather than the results of his actions whereas the latter focuses on results and not just good intentions. In other words, our concern should be not with the constative aspects of the constitutions but with its performative dimension. Contradictions often occur as the pre-occupation of the policy makers move from one to the other. It is as a result of this contradiction that power remains at the center of the state, despite the commitment of most African states to decentralization. 
A cursory examination of current practice reveals that despite the explosion, if not inflation in the political grammar with the introduction of terms such as regions, provinces, departments etc. power remains at the hands of those at the center. And the role of the frontline officials in the policy cycle is restricted to policy implementation. At this phase their margin for manoeuvring is rather slim. Therefore, if civil society is to have any inputs into the decision making process, it should be at the level where the decisions are taken. 
In the early phase of the democratization process, most people adhered to it because of the promise or liberating possibilities. People were de-energized as a result of the prohibitive costs of engaging with the state. Engagement, I should observe took confrontational rather than non-obtrusive modes. Incumbent regimes that were not convinced about the normative claims of liberal-democracy or were privileged the politics of the belly fought back ferociously. Not only did they kill people who challenged their authority in public space, they even invaded private space with a view to enforcing political conformity. Thus besides the economic costs incurred in engaging with the state, there was also the loss of life. Consequently, most people suffered from the rebound effect. That is, considering democracy as a public good from which all would benefit whether they fought for it or not, they did not see why they had to be actively involved in any struggle for its introduction and consolidation. Already, they had given up so much for so very little. Disillusionment leads to attitudinal change. This consideration, for example, helps to explain why some Cameroonians decided not to respect the villes mortes or operation dead towns as well as its declining popularity as a popular mode of political action. Fatigue simply set in. Others were deterred by the re-emergence of fear as an idiom of social consciousness. 
Democratization in Africa: Which Way Forward 
This is a rather broad question and there are no clear answers for the specific conditions in each country would impact on the process. I subscribe to Plato theory of politics as articulated by Protagoras. It is narrated through the myth of Zeus who via Hermes, gave human beings the techne politike, a gift which renders them able to discuss and to deal with all issues pertaining to their city, because it makes them able to be able to judge between right and wrong.  But more than this is required in this particular circumstance. For the consolidation of democracy there is a need for a civic culture which represents the patterning of how we share a common space, common resources, and common opportunities and manage interdependence in the «company of strangers» which constitutes the public. In the context of the state, this requires subordinating the state’s activities to proceduralized forms of public deliberation, which in the view of Habermas would help to redesign the interface between state and citizenry in a way that is less damaging and oppressive. This foregrounds the role that civil society would have to play in the democratization process. For this reason and reasons of parsimony, I would want to limit my observations to the role that civil society can play in the giving a new impulse, if not re-energizing the democratization process in Africa. 
In the present political conjuncture, we are witnessing the right sizing or retreat of the African post-colonial state as it is being forced by the Washington consensus to disengage from the economic sector. Already the inability of the state to act as an unbound Prometheus, providing benefits to many organized groups has led to a more competitive and pluralistic associational environment. Getting the state out of the economic realm as prescribed in the Structural Adjustment Programs (SAP) will only  contribute to creating an enlarged political space within which associational life can occur. This argument is informed by experience from elsewhere where the loosening of regulations on economic production inevitably gives rise to pressures for political liberalization and lessens dependence on the state. In this new enabling environment, groups within civil society will enjoy greater opportunities to attract a following, develop a bureaucratic form and formulate policy alternatives. 
But there is a flip side to this argument. If the state’s role in the economy is restricted to providing an enabling environment, that would also prevent it from providing social services such as (universal) education, which is crucial in the development of civil society. It is as a result of the lack of education that public morality in Africa continues to have a primordial rather than a civic basis. Besides, education in Kierkegaard’s view is a sine qua non for an existential revolution, that is the awakening of human responsibility, spirit and reasoning that are important in the recovery of the feeling of possibility. A continuous emphasis would have to be put on education. Failing this, there is a strong probability that an underclass would develop in Africa at this juncture of its history. This class embraces a counterculture and is known for its apathy in issues of public concern. Thus, for the purposes of consolidating democracy, this trend would have to be reversed. Chances look bleak as even traditional safety networks are disintegrating. Conscious of this fact, financial institutions such as the World Bank have also put an equal emphasis on the social dimensions of structural adjustment. Basic education constitutes one of the components of this package. 
As indicated above, people have been turned from participating in the politics of civil society because it has so far privileged confrontational modes. Whereas some people have shied away from this approach, let me try to comfort their advocates by re-emphasizing their liberation potential. With the passage of time, they would be distilled, refined and routinized so that they become part of the accepted action repertoire. Takembeng, for example was not created in the 1990s. But it was used effectively for purposes of the struggle. In other words, I am positing that the protests for democratization that occurred in Africa in the early 1990s would still help to push the process forward. Aristide Zolberg posits that though movements do not collapse the distance between the present and the future, they shorten it and in that case can be seen as successful miracles. (18) Leaders of these movements would disappear or would be eaten by their own revolution, but parts of their message would be distilled into common frameworks of public or private culture. 
However, with a view to enhancing its bandwagon effect, civil society may have to embrace unobtrusive modes of protest that lead to imaginative accommodation between the state and civil society. Change of strategy may become imperative as a result of the increasing congruence between the objectives of the state and civil society. As African states retreat from the economic realm, voluntary associations comprising part of civil society would move in to take their place. As partners, this would place them in good stead to begin to make new demands, even if this be political, on this state. 
So far, most groups in civil society have been multipurpose organizations that have an explicit political agenda. But single-issue groups are forming. Functional specification helps to increase their bargaining power of the group. In Cameroon, the government’s response to the strike by the taxi men can be seen as a case in point. Though prompted by a hike in the price of fuel, they used the opportunity to air other grievances such as the harassment by the police. This sort of issue linkage would help to increase the political clout of this organization. Attempts by the state to blackmail them were to no avail. This forced it to make concessions to this group. And as I indicated above, concession in any realm frays away at the power of the state. 
Global forces at work would lead to a change in the political opportunity structure. That is the consistent, but not necessarily formal or permanent dimensions of the political environment that provide incentives for people to undertake collective action by affecting their expectations of success or failure. Theorists of the political opportunity structure emphasize the mobilization of resources external to the group. (19) As concerns civil society in Africa, I am proposing that this external resource would obtain as a result of networking activities that the they would enter into with groups outside of their borders. That together they would be able to force the African lame Leviathan not to retreat from the path of democratic reform is attributable to the fact life is breathed into this state on a daily basis by the international community. 
The efficacy of this strategy can be deduced from an examination of the history of the recent past of Africa. In the struggle for Africa’s first independence, one witnessed the omnibus tendency of groups as they did not hesitate to federate in the face of the imperial powers. Today, Africa stands at the threshold of its second liberation, not from colonial rule but from the yoke of oppression put in place by the first generation leadership. There is no doubt that this strategy would have the same impact. For as John Dewey remarked the present is a continuously moving moment stretching out a hundred years in both directions from here and now. Thus, the present is always a present of the past. The future a future of this present. 
The fact that liberalism (liberal-democracy) is the megatrend of the late twenty century and is likely to be unchallenged by any other ism in the twenty first century means that the budding civil society in Africa which seeks to prop up this system would benefit from a lot of good will in the rest of the world. As the nation state becomes anachronistic as a result of the globalization (seen in this context as a force promoting both homgenization and heterogenization), the problem solving capacity of civil society in Africa would be enhanced if it federates with other groups outside of the continent. 
Cooperation among these groups may even be institutionalized as in the case of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) where it has led to the formation of international non-governmental organizations (INGOs). These INGOs are involved in second track diplomacy (that is a back-up diplomacy to intergovernmental organizations). The Beijing Declaration virtually written by one of these groups can be held up as proof of its effectiveness. As these groups would have an agenda similar to that of Western governments (as can be inferred from the emphasis on good governance), they would be able to force these governments to make sure that the political conditionality clause written in most aid agreements is respected. Some may see this as interference in the affairs of sovereign states. Indeed, it may even look patronizing. But what morality can be used to condemn interference in states where relations of force rather than of sovereignty exists? On the contrary, I would see it through the eyes of Henry David Thoreau who in A Plea for Captain John Brown justifies intervention as following: «I pity the poor in bondage that have none to help them; that is why I am here; not to gratify my personal animosity, revenge or vindictive spirit. It is my sympathy with the oppressed and the wronged, that are as good as you, and as precious in the sight of God». (20) 


(1) See for example, Jan Aart Scholte (1998), «The IMF Meets Civil Society», in Finance and Development, September, Vol. 35, No. 3, pp. 42-45. 
(2) Jean-Francois Bayart (1986), «Civil Society in Africa» in Political Domination in Africa: Reflections on the Limits of Power, ed. by Patrick Chabal, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p.133. 
(3) Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, ed. by J.P. Mayer & Max Lerner, New York: Harper & Row, 1966, p.175. 
(4) see Alfred Stepan (1988), Rethinking Military Politics: Brazil and the Southern Cone. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, pp. 3-4. 
(5) Jurgen Habermas (1990), Moral Consciousness and Communicative Action, trans. by Christian Lendhardt & Shierry Weber Nicholson, Cambridge, Mass: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Press, p.89. This is a condition for communicative action central to Habermas’s reflexive democracy.  
(6) Martin Heidegger (1977), «The Question of Technology» in The Question Concerning Technology and Other Essays, New York: Harper & Row, p.18. 
(7) for a detailed discussion, see Nantang Jua (1997), «Spatial Politics, Political Stability in Cameroon». A keynote address presented at a Workshop on Cameroon: Biography of a Nation, at Amherst College, Amherst, Mass., November 20-23, esp. pp. 4 & 18-21. 
(8) This is an adaptation of the Brian Birch’s(1975) thesis. Birch argues that people engage only in economic activity almost everyday of their lives. See «Economic Models in Political Science: the Base of Exit, Voice and Loyalty» in British Journal of Political Science, p.  
(9) for a detailed discussion, see Nantang Jua (1997), op. Cit., esp. pp. 18-21. 
(10) Eric Hobsbawm (     ), Nations and Nationalism since 1780: Myth and Reality, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p.38. 
(11) Kwame Anthony Appiah (1992), IN My Father’s House, Oxford: Oxford University Press.  
(12) Mordechai Tamarkin (1996), «Culture and Politics in Africa: Ethnicity, Rehabilitating the Post-colonial State» in Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, Vol. 2, No. 3, Autumn, p.360. Samora Michel noted on this score that «for the nation to live the tribe must die». 
(13) Goran Hyden (1980), Beyond Ujamaa in Tanzania: Underdevelopment and the Uncaptured Peasantry, Berkeley: University of California Press, p.9. 
(14) Ibid, p.38 
(15) Cited in Cameroon Post, No. 01q98, 17 January 1994, p.10. 
(16) cited in The Diasporan, No. 001, 14 April 1995, p.5. 
(17) in Ibid. 
(18) Aristide Zolberg (1972), «Moments of Madness» in Politics and Society, 2, p.206. 
(19) See Sidney Tarrow (1994), Power in Movement, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 85. 
(20) See Lee A. Jacobus (1983), A World of Ideas, New York: St. Martin’s Press, p. 159.

© The ideas and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author
and do not necessarily reflect the views of UNESCO.

© Les idées et opinions exprimées dans cette article sont celles de l'auteur
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