Skip to main content

The political economy of nation formation in modern Tanzania: explaining stability in the face of diversity

Buy Article:

$47.50 plus tax (Refund Policy)

Tanzania's success in nation formation and ethnic conflict prevention is a striking refutation of the prevalence of state failure across post-colonial Africa. However, the Tanzanian case has heretofore never been examined in comparative perspective. This article reviews the existing set of literature claiming to explain Tanzanian exceptionalism - focusing, in particular, on ethnic diversity, nation-building and ethnic conflict management policies, and the Swahili language - and finds it lacking. Instead, the author argues that Tanzania's low and equitable endowments of labour and capital have greatly aided her subsequent political stability and nation formation. In particular, he shows that such endowments have prevented the rise of large-scale inter-regional inequalities which have driven state failure elsewhere in Africa. He also examines the counterfactual case of Zanzibar, which adds further support to its argument. The article concludes that processes of demographic change and economic development have played much more a role in ethnic conflict prevention in Tanzania than has been previously recognised.
No Reference information available - sign in for access.
No Citation information available - sign in for access.
No Supplementary Data.
No Article Media
No Metrics

Keywords: Tanzania; demography; ethnic conflict; nation-building; nationalism

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of International Development, London School of Economics, London, UK

Publication date: 01 April 2011

  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
X
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more