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Explaining the Constitutional Integration and Resurgence of Traditional Political Institutions in Sub-Saharan Africa

Holzinger, Katharina and Kern, Florian and Kromrey, Daniela (2019) 'Explaining the Constitutional Integration and Resurgence of Traditional Political Institutions in Sub-Saharan Africa.' Political Studies. ISSN 0032-3217 (In Press)

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Abstract

Social scientists have recently observed a “resurgence” of traditional political institutions on the constitutional level in Sub-Sahara Africa. Yet, the scope and causes of the resurgence remain unclear. We base our analysis on original data on the degree of constitutional integration of traditional institutions and on their constitutional resurgence since 1990 in 45 countries of Sub-Saharan Africa. We test six theoretical explanations for constitutionalization: former colonial rule, democratization, state capacity, economic development, foreign aid and settlement patterns. First, we verify the broad resurgence of traditional political institutions on a constitutional level. Second, our analysis suggests that, particularly in former British colonies, traditional leaders were able to translate the arrangements of British colonial rule as well as the advantages of a country’s deconcentrated settlement pattern into greater constitutional status. Third, settlement patterns proved important for traditional leaders to gain or increase constitutional status – leading to a constitutional resurgence of traditional institutions.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: constitution, integration, resurgence, Sub-Saharan Africa, traditional political institutions
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Government, Department of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 21 Jan 2020 15:29
Last Modified: 21 Jan 2020 15:29
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/25557

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