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Political Structure as a Legacy of Indirect Colonial Rule: Bargaining between National Governments and Rural Elites in Africa

Mizuno, Nobuhiro (2013): Political Structure as a Legacy of Indirect Colonial Rule: Bargaining between National Governments and Rural Elites in Africa.

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Abstract

Alliances between national governments and rural elites are observed in post-colonial Africa. In such alliances, the national governments preserve rural-elite authority formed during the colonial era and cede their resources and prerogatives to the rural elites. This paper develops a model of bargaining between a national government and a rural elite, in which the bargaining power of the national government is endogenously explained by the ability of the rural elite to compel obedience from rural residents. Since indirect colonial rule is a significant source of the rural-elite control over residents, the result implies that cross-regional variations in colonial policies lead to variations in the feature of post-colonial alliances between African national governments and rural elites.

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