Dictators, Dictatorship and the African Novel: Fictions of the State under Neoliberalism

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This book examines the representation of dictators and dictatorships in African fiction. It examines how the texts clarify the origins of postcolonial dictatorships and explore the shape of the democratic-egalitarian alternatives. The first chapter explains the ‘neoliberal’ period after the 1970s as an effective ‘recolonization’ of Africa by Western states and international financial institutions. Dictatorship is theorised as a form of concentrated economic and political power that facilitates Africa’s continued dependency in the context of world capitalism. The deepest aspiration of anti-colonial revolution remains the democratization of these authoritarian states inherited from the colonial period. This book discusses four novels by Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, Ahmadou Kourouma, Chinua Achebe and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie in order to reveal how their themes and forms dramatize this unfinished struggle between dictatorship and radical democracy.

Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationCham
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan Ltd
Number of pages276
ISBN (Electronic)9783030665562
ISBN (Print)9783030665555, 9783030665586
Publication statusPublished - 2 Mar 2021

Publication series

NameNew Comparisons in World Literature


  • Decolonisation
  • Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Postcolonialism
  • Authoritarian state structures
  • Capitalist imperialism
  • Recolonisation


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