Afrykańskie elity polityczne.Problemy badawcze

  1. Aleksander Smardz

Abstract

African political elites. Research problems

Recently, the category of political elite in Africa is the one of the most unexplored phenomena in social science. That is why it lies within the interest of many scientific sub-disciplines especially sociology, political science or psychology. Undoubtedly the “wind of political changes” such as: break of communism, decolonisation, occidentalism/westernisation, and neo-colonialism, influences the shape of the African political class. That is why the term is very difficult to both determine and explore. The concept of the African elite is very problematic wich causes too much controversy in the scientific world. The first problem concerns the criterion for distinguishing the African political class, because elites of power in contemporary states in Black Land still function on the basis of traditional values, tribal society and structure, patronage, neo-patrimonial or cliental networks, with intertwining of private and public African spheres. Secondly, the impact of European tradition and political realism meant that African class of power was formed under both the influence of clashes between native tradition and Western modernization. Consequently, a combination of the determinants creates “methodological mosaic,” because the method combines several research techniques in exploration of contemporary elites like: observation, statistical research, quantitative and qualitative, case study, comparative studies, institutionalism historical perspective. The article describes and seeks to explain the current state of research on political elites in Africa.

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Wrocławskie Studia Politologiczne

12, 2011

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