oa African Review - The concept of class and the study of Africa

Volume 2, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0002-0117



The current literature in English on the study of Africa contains only one article explicitly concerned with the use of the concept of class, and its author is more interested in the ideological predispositions of those who have used the concept than with any systematic treatment of the theoretical problems involved. Elsewhere, passing references to class, either as part of theoretical introductions or conclusions to empirical studies have generally sought to justify the absence of the concept, and are usually both brief and question begging. This paper will begin the task of filling this hiatus, and will suggest that class analysis can be of more use in the study of tropical Africa than has often been supposed.

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