Article from ROAPE Volume 29 Number 92
African Diaspora, ‘Development’ & Modern African Political Theory
Those concerned with the study of African political economy and 'development' in Africa have often neglected those ideas that emerged from the African diaspora, while those who study the African diaspora have often been more concerned with issues of 'identity' than with the political future of Africa. This article argues that for those who are concerned to study anti-colonialism, it is difficult to separate the history of Africa and the African diaspora during the colonial period in the early 20th century. Many key anti-colonial ideas were developed as much in the diaspora and in the capital cities of Europe, as they were within the African continent. Ideologies such as Pan-Africanism, which developed within the diaspora in general, and Britain in particular, drew from the same 19th century sources that imposed eurocentric notions on the ideology of African nationalism. However, such ideologies, as developed by activists from the diaspora, created the basis for alternative strategies not only for the anti-colonial struggle but also for a modern African political theory, a necessary requirement for people-centred development in post-colonial African states.