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Series: Vernon Series in Politics

Deciding in Unison: Themes in Consensual Democracy in Africa

Edited by Emmanuel Ifeanyi Ani, University of Ghana, Ghana and Edwin Etieyibo, University of the Witwatersrand

ISBN: 978-1-62273-853-3
Availability: Pre-order
$51 £38 €43

Deciding in Unison: Themes in Consensual Democracy in Africa is an edited volume that both scholars and students of African philosophy and politics will find interesting. The chapters trace the current state of the debate as well as the idea that the advancement of consensus democracy as unanimity democracy is no longer valid, and a democracy of compromise is suggested as an alternative for advancing consensus democracy. The collection also contains chapters dealing with Wiredu’s consensual proposal for the building of resistance movements as well as his views about the relativity of truth and the way we should handle it. However, there are also chapters that explore the non-party system Wiredu proposes as not applicable in practice. Furthermore, the issues related to transferring consensus-supporting values like communism into the contemporary Africa setting are also examined.

New Asian Approaches to Africa: Rivalries and Collaborations

Edited by Takuo Iwata, Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto, Japan

September 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-809-0
Availability: In stock
296pp. ¦ $62 £47 €53

The 21st century has seen an increase in the presence and influence of Asian governments, firms and other stake-holders in Africa. With the changing times, changes in approaches to Africa by four major Asian countries (China, India, Japan and South Korea) have taken place. By tracing the history between these Asian countries and African countries, this collection reflects on the “new” phases of Asian Approaches to Africa. Composed by authors who are not only experienced expert scholars of African Studies, but also prominent specialists on African policies of Asian countries, this collection focuses on the official development assistance (ODA) as well as other crucial issues and actors such as business, civil society, and media to explore the new Asian approaches to Africa in a comprehensive manner. Organised into three sections, this collection explores the experiences of the “forums” (conferences, or summits) for Africa’s development hosted by four major Asian countries, reflects on Asian cultural influence in Africa, and highlights new phases of Asian approaches to Africa. This book looks to the future collaboration of Asian actors/ partners working in/ with Africa, rather than exaggerating rivalries and disputes in order to grasp the potentialities and challenges in the relationship between the two regions; an emerging and ongoing agenda that we will encounter further in the coming years. This book will be of interest to students, researchers and professors in universities, as well as research institutes on Asian and African Studies. It will also be of value to journalists, and government officials; particularly diplomats.

Political Corruption in a World in Transition

Edited by Jonathan Mendilow, Rider University and Éric Phélippeau, Université Paris Nanterre, France

June 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-332-3
Availability: In stock
337pp. ¦ $65 £49 €55

This book argues that the mainstream definitions of corruption, and the key expectations they embed concerning the relationship between corruption, democracy, and the process of democratization, require reexamination. Even critics who did not consider stable institutions and legal clarity of veteran democracies as a cure-all, assumed that the process of widening the influence on government decision making and implementation allows non-elites to defend their interests, define the acceptable sources and uses of wealth, and demand government accountability. This had proved correct, especially insofar as ‘petty corruption’ is involved. But the assumption that corruption necessarily involves the evasion of democratic principles and a ‘market approach’ in which the corrupt seek to maximize profit does not exhaust the possible incentives for corruption, the types of behaviors involved (for obvious reasons, the tendency in the literature is to focus on bribery), or the range of situations that ‘permit’ corruption in democracies. In the effort to identify some of the problems that require recognition, and to offer a more exhaustive alternative, the chapters in this book focus on corruption in democratic settings (including NGOs and the United Nations which were largely so far ignored), while focusing mainly on behaviors other than bribery.

Nietzsche & Anarchism: An Elective Affinity and a Nietzschean reading of the December ’08 revolt in Athens

Christos Iliopoulos

February 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-603-4
Availability: In stock
222pp. ¦ $59 £44 €50

This book aims to establish the bond between Friedrich Nietzsche and the anarchists, through the apparatus of “elective affinity”, and to challenge the boundaries of several anarchist trends – especially “classical” and “post” anarchism – and “ideologies” like anarchism and libertarian Marxism. Moreover, it highlights the importance of reading Nietzsche politically, in a radical way, to understand his utility for the contemporary anarchist movement. The review of the literature concerning the Nietzsche-anarchy relationship shows the previously limited bibliography and stresses the possibility of exploring this connection, with the methodological help of Michael Löwy’s concept of “elective affinity”. The significance of this finding is that the relevant affinity may contribute to an alternative, to the dominant, perception of anarchism as an ideology. It may also designate its special features together with its weaknesses, meaning the objections of Nietzsche to certain aspects of the anarchist practices and worldview (violence, resentment, bad conscience), thus opening a whole new road of self-criticism for the anarchists of the twenty first century. In addition, the location and analysis of the elective affinity serves the debunking of the Nietzschean concepts used by conservative and right-wing readings in order to appropriate Nietzsche, and of the accusations that the German philosopher had unleashed against anarchists, which reveals his misunderstanding of anarchist politics. The final part of this book applies the whole analysis above on a Nietzschean reading of the December ’08 revolt in Athens based on the “Of the Three Metamorphoses” discourse from Thus Spoke Zarathustra, offering an alternative view of the events that shook Greece and also had an important global impact.

A Nation Divided: The Conflicting Personalities, Visions, and Values of Liberals and Conservatives

Anthony Walsh, Boise State University

April 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-621-8
Availability: In stock
188pp. ¦ $59 £44 €50

Activists have long claimed that “the personal is political”, but this book posits the converse: that the political is personal. The United States today is bitterly divided. It is less an aspirational melting pot of immigrants and more a salad bowl made up of distinct, often clashing flavors. The successive elections of two divisive presidents—one committed to the perennial leftist dream of “fundamental change” and the other to a conservative vision of “Making America Great Again”—have exacerbated what is arguably the greatest rift in politics since the election of Abraham Lincoln. Taking inspiration from Coleridge’s belief that all humans are temperamentally destined to follow the path of Plato the Idealist or Aristotle the Realist, this book examines the political divide in terms of these temperamental differences. Liberals’ and conservatives’ views of human nature have a large bearing on the political policies they espouse, but their temperaments and personalities have the most significant impact. This book analyses the personality traits of liberals and conservatives in terms of the “Big Five” model—openness to experience, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. Conservatives are found in almost all studies to be more conscientious, agreeable, and extroverted, while liberals are found to be more open to new experience and neurotic. The political divisions I explore in this book are all essentially fueled by personality differences. There is a deepening divide between liberals and conservatives in the battle for America’s soul: one side seeks to steer the nation sharply to the left into socialist selfdom, whereas the other side desires a wealthy and free America under the watchful eye of God’s providence. A preponderance of academic texts belongs to the liberal tradition. Conservatives have long lacked a comparable intellectual tradition of their own, although an incipient one is now beginning to form. This book, while maintaining a measure of scholarly distance, is unashamedly written from a conservative point of view.

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