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The Open Veins of Africa

The Open Veins of Africa

The Dynamics of Extractive Accumulation by Dispossession in 21st Century Africa

by Tatah Mentan
Publication Date: 27/06/2018
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There is no discussion on Africa today that does not make reference to the contradiction that exists between its wealth of natural resources and the poverty of most of its people. Africa is not a poor continent, and not all Africans are poor. Yet Africa is depicted as the world's poorest continent, where the majority of people live with no access to clean water, decent health care, education and electricity, and struggle to survive in the face of high levels of unemployment, poverty and inequality. This is the reality we see all around the continent. The reason, according to Professor Tatah Mentan, is that extractive foreign industries and the competition to access natural resources envelop parasitic African governments in a web of unaccountability, corruption, repression, and rent-seeking. The love affair between many African governments and international corporations--and the optimistic power of the "Africa rising" narrative--are obscuring harsh realities, namely that many Africans are deprived of benefiting from the exploitation of their own natural resources. In many of these high growth countries, citizens now believe that they are paying too high a price for economic growth, which does not trickle down to them. There is a new wind blowing across the continent and it is bringing with it increasing demands for Africa's resources to benefit Africans. And past relations between extractive imperialists and puppet African governments are under scrutiny. This book dissects the dynamics of the politics of natural resource extraction in Africa that resolves into a matter of class struggle. This class struggle is visible at the level of combatting the workings of capitalism and imperialism in the interest of the dominant international class of corporatocrats and its African parasitic class, and simultaneously mobilizing forces against those exploitative and oppressive interests. Tatah Mentan's book is therefore a MUST READ for students, researchers, social scientists examining the political economy of contemporary imperialism, policy makers, and corporate managers.
Development studies
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