Seifudein Adem is research associate professor of Political Science in Binghamton University, New York, NY, USA, and President-Emeritus of the New York State African Studies Association. Before coming to the United States, Dr. Adem taught Political Science in the University of Tsukuba (Japan) and Addis Ababa University (Ethiopia). Seifudein Adem is the author of, among other books, Japan: A Model and a Partner (Brill, 2006).
This chapter examines the role of political recycling – the practice of repeated utilization of former high-level politicians in government – in forestalling or, at least, minimizing conflicts among political players. Drawing upon observations from recent political experiences of Japan, the chapter first demonstrates that political recycling in Japan is deeply embedded in the society's cultural practices rather than in the system of liberal democracy, which its leaders espouse. Political recycling in Japan, in fact, exhibits features that are antithetical to liberal democracy. The dynamic relationship between political recycling and conflict prevention in Japan are then analyzed as well as the implications of the analysis for places in Africa where political conflict has been rampant.
China–Africa relations have come under scrutiny recently, with more articles and books having been written on it in the last 10 years than in the preceding 50 years all…
China–Africa relations have come under scrutiny recently, with more articles and books having been written on it in the last 10 years than in the preceding 50 years all put together. Despite the generous attention, however, the nature and outcome of China–Africa relations are far from clear. It is, in fact, as though the more one reads about China in Africa, the less one knows about it. The empirical evidence seems to lend support to the twin claims that China is looting Africa and that it is developing the continent. The massive literature and seemingly contradictory perspectives about Africa–China relations thus cry out for a disciplinary framework, disciplinary in both senses of that term. What are the divergent perspectives about Afro–Chinese relations? How did they emerge? What are the driving forces behind them? Is the sustained discourse about Afro–Chinese relations justifiable on empirical grounds? And is it a good thing for Africa in any case? These questions are addressed in this essay from the perspective of social constructivism.