African State and Society in the 1990s is the first comprehensive English-language book to appear on Cameroon's political events since 1989. Designed for academic and policy studies readers, it covers developments from the 1960s to the present as background for an analysis of the continuing conflict since 1990 between the regime and political opposition over democratization. Based on extensive research in Cameroon between 1989 and 1995 in the form of interviews, independent press articles, and major political parties' writings, African State and Society in the 1990s details political confrontations?evolving from bullets to ballots?in the context of a sharply declining economy and a society wrought with ethnic, linguistic, and constitutional tensions. The authors show how the competitive stakes rise as a previously effective political class faces unsubdued challenges to its hegemony over major enterprises. The uncertainty is heightened by the fact that no coherent alliance or potentially successor group has yet emerged from the opposition forces, which now operate across Cameroon's social landscape.The book's analysis of the disarray raises hard questions about whether the nation-state can still serve as a model of stability. The national elections in 1997 make the book particularly timely as a specific case study?applicable to Africa at large?that gives insights into the chances for successful resolution of the continent's volatile political conflicts.
Table of Contents
Illustrations, Acronyms, Acknowledgments, Preface: The Research Setting, Methodology, and Theory, Introduction: Cameroon's State and Society in African Context A Metaphor for Africa in the 1990s, Cameroon in Africa, 1960s-1990s: A Synopsis, Scholarship on the African and Cameroon State, State-Civil Society Scholarship in the 1990s, The Cameroon Scholarship, The Questions Ahead, Ahidjo and the Single-Party State, 1958-1982, The Emergence of Ahmadou Ahidjo, The Years of Trial, 1958-1962, Creating a Single-Party State, 1962-1966, From Single Party to United Republic, 1966-1972, Ahidjo's Presidential Monarchy, 1972-1982, Biya's Early Presidency, 1982-1986, From Ahidjo to Biya: The Transfer of Power, 1982, Disputed Succession and Legacy: Ahidjo and Biya, 1983-1984, The New Deal: Aspiration, Compromise, and Reality, The State Under Pressure, 1986-1990, Failed Promises and the Illusion of Reforms, Cameroon's Declining Economy, Global Politics and Domestic Demands for Reform, Crisis Years, 1991-1992, The Press, Opposition Challenge and Regime Response to Mid-1991, Villes Mortes/Ghost Towns, Mid-Late 1991, Political Parties and Mounting Tensions, The Balance of Forces, Late 1991, Legislative Electoral Test, Early 1992, Presidential Electoral Test, Late 1992, Impasse, 1993-1997 Party and Institutional Politics: The Early 1993 Profile, Regional and Ethnic Politics, 1993-1997: Anglophones, Regional and Ethnic Politics, 1993-1997: The North, Regional and Ethnic Politics Miscellany, 1993-1997, Constitutional Debate and Action, Institutional, Electoral, and Party Politics, 1995-1997, Cameroon and the Prospects for Democratization, Disarray in the Political Class: Principals and Auxiliaries, An Alternative Political Class?, Emergent Social Experience, Formations, and Alignments, Foreign Factors, Conclusion, Appendix, Bibliography, Index
Joseph Takougang is associate professor in the Department of African- American Studies at the University of Cincinnati and Milton Krieger is a professor in the Department of Liberal Studies at Western Washington University.