1. Introduction2. Post-colonial readjust and variation3. Contrasting perspectives ~ above the colonial legacy4. A pre-colonial perspective on early american legacies5. Colonial regimes: similarities and variations6. Early american rule and Africa’s specialisation in main product exports7. In the direction of manufacturing?8. Markets and African entrepreneurship9. State capacity10. Conclusion"/>
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This write-up reviews how early american rule and African actions throughout the colonial period affected the resources and also institutional settings for succeeding economic development south that the Sahara. The worry is watched from the view of the dynamics of advance in what remained in 1900 one overwhelmingly land-abundant region characterised by shortages of labour and also capital, by possibly surprisingly considerable indigenous market tasks and by varying however often short levels of politics centralisation. The differential impact of French and British ascendancy is explored, however it is said that a larger determinant the the differential development of poverty, welfare and also structural change was the contrast between “settler” and also “peasant” economies.

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Index terms


Thematic keywords:

colonial | colonisation, democracy, economic | advancement history, history, independence, political economy

Geographic keywords:

Africa Sub-Saharan
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Outline


1. Introduction
2. Post-colonial adjust and variation
3. Difference perspectives on the early american legacy
4. A pre-colonial view on colonial legacies
5. Early american regimes: similarities and also variations
6. Colonial rule and also Africa’s specialisation in primary product exports
7. Towards manufacturing?
8. Markets and also African entrepreneurship
9. State capacity
10. Conclusion
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1. Arrival

1This write-up asks just how the legacies of european rule, both generally and also in specific categories that colony, have impacted post-colonial economic advance in Sub-Saharan Africa. The year 1960 is traditionally used as the “stylised date” of independence, because that the good reason the it witnessed the finish of colonial rule in many of the French swarms south the the Sahara and also in the many populous British and Belgian persons (Nigeria and Congo respectively).1 half a century is a reasonable period over i beg your pardon to review the economic impact of legacies due to the fact that it allows us to take into consideration the concern in the paper definition of various phases of post-colonial policy and also performance.


2The causal definition of legacies varies, in the they affect subsequent liberty of manoeuvre to different extents and also in various directions. In ~ its strongest, legacy takes the type of “path determination”, implying the colonial options determined post-colonial ones, or at the very least conditioned them, together that departure from the colonial pattern was, and perhaps remains, difficult and costly. Besides asking around the toughness of the influence of the past on the future, we need to consider the nature of that influence. Did early american rule put African countries on a higher or reduced path of financial change? It will certainly be argued here that the “path(s)” on i m sorry African economies were (to a greater or lesser extent) set by the time of self-reliance are most usefully watched not as necessarily initiated in the colonial period, however often fairly as continuations and adjustments from routes of readjust established prior to the european partition of the continent.

3The following conversation has 3 preliminary sections. Thus, thing 2 first attempts a review of the economic record since independence in bespeak to define the pattern for which early american legacies may have been partly responsible. Thing 3 outlines completing views that those legacies. Chapter 4 do the efforts to specify the economic and also political structures and trends in ~ Africa ~ above the eve of the europe partition that the continent. It identifies an arising African comparative benefit in land-extensive develops of production, i m sorry West afri in details were currently exploiting and, by their investments and initiatives, deepening.

4In this framework, chapter 5 then introduces the early american regimes, highlighting their fiscal constraints and also comparing various national styles of early american rule, concentrating on the largest empires, those that Britain and France. It is a design template of this essay, however, that another kind the variation between colonies was much more important, i.e. That characterized by the level and kind of europe appropriation and also use that land: “settler”, “plantation” and “peasant” colonies. Chapter 6 considers exactly how far early american rule (and the plot of European suppliers that that facilitated) reinforced the emergence of a comparative advantage in land-extensive major exports and also looks in ~ the results of this because that the welfare that the population. Chapter 7 explores early american contributions, and also their limits, for the very long-term transition of African element endowments from labour scarcity towards labour abundance and a reasonably high level that human resources formation, such as assisted Tokugawa Japan, and much more recently other parts of Asia, to attain “labour-intensive industrialisation” (Sugihara 2007). Thing 8 assesses the affect of different kinds that European regime on african entrepreneurship and also on institutions facilitating, hindering or channelling african participation in markets. Thing 9 completes the substantive conversation by commenting top top the long-term impacts of the early american intrusion on the capacity of the State in Africa for facilitating and promoting financial development.

2. Post-colonial change and sport

5Notoriously, output per head in Sub-Saharan Africa is the lowest of any significant world region and has, on average, broadened slowly and also haltingly since 1960. But there have been necessary changes, and variations end space, in policy and performance. In policy, structure adjustment in the 1980s significant a watershed: a an essential shift from administrative to market way of source allocation. The change, however, was much less dramatic in many of the former French colonies, whereby (except in Guinea) the maintain of a convertible money had permitted governments to stop some the the supplementary price and also quantity controls which had increasingly been enforced in the mostly previous British swarms outside the france zone. In performance, aggregate economic growth rates in the region were quite respectable until 1973-75 (Jerven 2009). Ironically, in the decade or so complying with the adoption of structure adjustment they to be stagnant or negative, prior to the Chinese-led boom in people commodity prices eased the an ar into 12 years of gross residential product (GDP) expansion at an mean of 5% a year before the crises of 2007 (rising fuel and also food prices, then the start of the international financial crisis) and 2008 brought about a “great recession” in 2009 (IMF 2009).


1 for a basic account check out Rimmer (1992, esp. 5, 228).

6There were notable exceptions to the general expansion trends, both before and also after the turning-point in the early to mid-1970s. Côte d’Ivoire and also Ghana made a an especially interesting contrast: similarly-sized neighbors with relatively similar factor endowments and geographical features, yet with different early american heritages. Côte d’Ivoire underwent what might loosely be defined as a intensified version the the standard development trajectory. It average an yearly GDP expansion of 9.5% indigenous 1960 come 1978 (Berthélemy and Söderling 2001, 324-5) but then had several years of stagnation followed by polite war. Meanwhile, Ghana did practically the opposite. Ghanaian GDP per capita was barely higher in 1983, once it started structural adjustment, than at freedom in 1957.1 However, as among the two most successful cases of structure adjustment in Africa (the other being Uganda), Ghana averaged practically 5% yearly growth throughout the quarter-century after ~ 1983. Thus, roughly, while Côte d’Ivoire was climbing Ghana to be falling, and also vice versa. Only one Sub-Saharan economy, Botswana, sustained development over three, certainly four, decades since its independence, which remained in 1966. Botswana averaged 9.3% yearly growth (Berthélemy and Söderling 2001, 324-5).


2 because that Africanist commentaries check out Austin (2008b) and also Hopkins (2009).

7A function of the theoretical and ideological debate about the history of economic breakthrough in Africa is the it is feasible to with rather comparable conclusions from very different scholarly and political starting-points. Regarding the early american impact, the situation for the prosecution, which a generation earlier was urged many strongly by dependency theorists and also radical nationalists (Amin 1972; Rodney 1972), is currently championed by “rational choice” expansion economists. Daron Acemoglu, Simon Johnson and also James A. Robinson (2001; 2002) have suggested that Africa’s relative poverty in ~ the finish of the 20th century was mostly the result of the kind taken through European manifest destiny on the continent: europeans settling for extraction quite than settling themselves in overwhelming numbers and thereby presenting the kinds of college (private home rights and also systems of federal government that would support them) that, follow to Acemoglu, Johnson and also Robinson, to be responsible for economic development in Europe and the nests of European negotiation in phibìc America and Australasia.2


8Colonial extraction in Africa can be seen many decisively in the appropriation that land for European inhabitants or plantations, a strategy supplied not only to provide European investors and settlers through cheap and also secure manage of land, but additionally to oblige afri to sell their work to europe farmers, planters or mine-owners (Palmer and Parsons 1977). Also in the “peasant” colonies, i.e. Wherein the land continued to be overwhelmingly in african ownership, we will check out that significant parts the the solutions sector were properly monopolised by Europeans. Then there to be coercive recruitment of labour by colonial administrations, even if it is to occupational for the State or for European exclusive enterprise (Fall 1993; Northrup 1988). The potentially an excellent long-term prestige was the unwillingness of colonial governments come accept, still less promote, the appearance of industries in land civil liberties on land populated by Africans, even if it is in “settler” or “peasant” colonies (Phillips 1989). Native the perspectives that both suspended theory and also “rational choice” institutionalism, the original sin of manifest destiny in Africa was that it did not present a full-blooded capitalist system, based upon exclusive property and also thereby generating the pressures in the direction of competition and build-up necessary to journey self-sustained economic growth.

9A narrower yet important dispute was do by the then little group that liberal breakthrough economists between the 1950s and 1970s. In ~ a time when development economists (especially but not solely those writing in French) tended to favour a leading duty for the State in the find for breakthrough in mixed economic situations (Hugon 1993; Killick 1978) P. T. Bauer (1953; 1972) assaulted the late early american State for presenting statutory marketing boards and thereby laying the foundation of what he thought about to be deadening State interventionism.

10Explicitly optimistic overviews of colonial rule in Africa room rare (but view Duignan and Gann 1975). Countless studies, though, mention the suppression that intra-African warfare, the abolition of internal slave trading and slavery, the advent of mechanised transport and also investment in infrastructure, and also the advance of contemporary manufacturing in the “settler” economies and in the Belgian Congo. Excited through the so late 20th century wave of economic “globalisation”, some financial liberals have suggested that the British empire pioneered the procedure through its general opposition to tariff security (1846-1931) and by other pro-market procedures (Ferguson 2003; Lal 2004). With respect to tariffs, this instance would use less strongly to French colonies because of the protectionism of the French empire. The is likewise much less true the the final 30 year of British dominion in Africa, which witnessed not just tariffs but likewise the production of marketing boards. From the perspective of institutional change, a an essential observation applicable to the region generally was highlighted by john Sender and Sheila blacksmith (1986). Creating in the “tragic optimist” heritage of Marx’s writings on British ascendancy in India, castle emphasised the wage labour was rarely at the start of early american rule and also increasingly usual by the end of it. Because that them, together for invoice Warren (1980), imperialism to be the “pioneer that capitalism”.

11Besides optimism and pessimism, a 3rd view of early american rule, and also by implicitly of the legacy, is that its importance has actually been over-rated. Over there are different routes to this conclusion. Plenty of historians room struck by the brevity of early american rule south of the Sahara, i.e. Around 60 years in many of dry Africa (Ajayi 1969), and also by the weak of the early american State (Herbst 2000). In this setting it have the right to plausibly be said that every little thing went fine in the “peasant” economic situations (and cash chop economies broadened greatly) was mostly the obligation of Africans, through their economic rationality and also entrepreneurship, a place epitomised by Polly Hill (1997). Much more ambivalent are the arguments of Jean-François Bayart (1989; 2000). Structure on the acquainted observation that rulers in Africa have actually usually found it difficult to raise huge revenues from domestic sources, Bayart argues that, during early american rule and since, african elites became clients of early american or overseas States. Thereby they forged connections which, despite unequal, benefits themselves and also the foreigners. Conversely, dependency theory emphasised the best of foreign firm in determining historical outcomes, Bayart insists that African elites played a calculating and an essential role in establishing the “extraverted” sample of african political economy.

4. A pre-colonial view on early american legacies

12To advice the colonial legacy, we require to identify it indigenous the situation and trends at the beginning of early american rule, i m sorry in many of Sub-Saharan Africa developed during the europe “Scramble”, indigenous 1879 to circa 1905. At that time the an ar was, as before, qualified generally (not everywhere all the time) by wealth of cultivable floor in relation to the labour accessible to till that (Hopkins 1973; Austin 2008a). This did not median “resource abundance” as lot of Africa’s mineral endowment to be either unknown or inaccessible v pre-industrial modern technology or was not yet an important even overseas. For example, countless of the significant discoveries (notably of oil in Nigeria and also diamonds in Botswana) were to happen only throughout the duration of decolonisation. Moreover, the fertility of lot of the soil was fairly low or at the very least fragile, making it costly or challenging to pursue extensive cultivation, especially in the absence of animal manure. Sleeping sickness prevent the use of big animals, whether because that ploughing or transport, in the forest zones and much that the savannas. The too much seasonality of the yearly distribution that rainfall rendered lot of the dried season successfully unavailable for farm yard work. The consequent short opportunity price of dry-season labour reduced the motivation to raise work productivity in craft production. Vice versa, the characteristic selections of farming approaches were land-extensive and also labour-saving; but the thinness of the soils constrained the return on work (Austin 2008a). Every this helps to explain why the performance of African work was apparently higher outside Africa over number of centuries, cf. The underlying economic logic of the external slave trades i m sorry in turn, ironically, aggravated the scarcity of labour within Africa chin (Austin 2008b; Manning 1990).

13Within Africa, the framework of incentives urged a high degree of self-sufficiency, and also by the center of the 20th century it was extensively assumed that pre-colonial economic climates had necessarily to be overwhelmingly subsistence-oriented. The last half-century the research has actually progressively adjusted this assessment, specifically for West Africa where a strong tendency in the direction of extra-subsistence manufacturing was evident in the 16th and 17th centuries. When damaged by the aggravated “Dutch disease” effects of the Atlantic slave trade (Inikori 2007; Austin, forthcoming), this propensity was strongly resumed native the very first decade of the 19th century when that trade started to be abolished, through West Africans developing on a broader and larger scale for internal and also overseas markets. Provided the family member scarcity of labour, and also in the absence (generally) of far-reaching economies of range in production, that was rarely for the reservation wage (the minimum fairy rate enough to persuade world to offer their labour rather than work-related for themselves) to it is in low enough for a would-be employer to purchased to salary it. Thus the labour industries of pre-colonial Africa largely took the kind of slave trading (Austin 2005, chapters 6, 8; Austin 2008a).

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14The exact same abundance of floor made political centralisation complicated to achieve and sustain (Herbst 2000). Politics fragmentation had facilitated the Atlantic slave trade, in that bigger States would have had actually stronger incentives and also capacities for rejecting joining in the (Inikori 2003). This fragmentation later helped with the european conquest. Ethiopia to be the exemption that showed the rule, v its fertile central provinces and huge agricultural surplus supporting a long-established and also modernising State that, alone in Africa, had the financial base to resist the “Scramble” successfully.