Roger Southall

Roger Southall
University of the Witwatersrand | wits · Department of Sociology

PhD

About

165
Publications
109,562
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2,082
Citations
Citations since 2016
27 Research Items
964 Citations
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2016201720182019202020212022050100150
2016201720182019202020212022050100150
2016201720182019202020212022050100150
Introduction
Currently working on Black Middle Class in South Africa
Skills and Expertise
Additional affiliations
June 2006 - present
University of the Witwatersrand
Position
  • Professor Emeritus
September 1972 - September 1975
University of Birmingham
Position
  • PhD Student
Description
  • PhD student

Publications

Publications (165)
Article
Recent decades have witnessed a 'middle classing of development' as global institutions hail the expansion of middle classes in the global South. Although the African continent has lagged behind in this regard, expanding middle classes have nonetheless been proclaimed as drivers of development and progress. However, such generalisation smoothes ove...
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Under the presidency of Mnangagwa, Zimbabwe’s foreign policy is characterized by the desire to ‘re-engage’ with the West with a view to securing the removal of sanctions and encouraging investment. In this, it has received the backing of the African Union and Southern African Development Community states. Simultaneously, the violence of the Mnangag...
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This analysis uses Walden Bello’s notion of charismatic politics to explain why ordinary people as voters have been complicit with the authoritarian politics of Donald Trump in the USA and Jacob Zuma in South Africa. In both cases, the authoritarian has displayed the capacity to connect with the masses by exploiting the yawning gap between popular...
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This article focuses on the impact of the policies of the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) government on Zimbabwe's black middle class. It does so by exploring three propositions emerging from the academic literature. The first is that during the early years of independence, the middle class transformed into a part...
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This article takes issue with the account of 'The Decolonisation of the Political Science Curriculum in East Africa' by Mongomemezulu and Hadebe published in a recent issue of this journal. It challenges the bald assertions that (i) expatriate staff at the University of East Africa became the agents of entrenching a Westernised curriculum; (ii) pol...
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Under apartheid, white oppression of the black majority was extreme, and South Africa became one of the most highly polarized countries in the world. Confronted by a counter-movement headed by the African National Congress (ANC), the ruling National Party (NP) was eventually pressured into a negotiation process that resulted in the adoption of a de...
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Recent presidential transitions in Southern Africa have prompted suggestions that the region is moving towards a new generational politics which is more responsive to the need for economic reform and holds significant democratic possibilities. While this analysis concedes that this analysis has some considerable purchase, it argues that the evidenc...
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Recent interest in the growth of middle classes in Africa (and elsewhere) has been characterised by immense theoretical diversity. While this diversity indicates the complexity (and limitations) of class analysis, it remains important for the latter to be guided by the classic concerns around power, wealth and inequality which characterise radical...
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“Bond notes” were introduced by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe in late 2016 as a local surrogate currency equivalent in value to the US dollar to address the acute currency shortage afflicting the economy. Unsurprisingly, they were overwhelmingly rejected by Zimbabweans, who feared that they heralded a return to the hyper-inflation which had destroye...
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The military-assisted ousting of Robert Mugabe as president of Zimbabwe and his replacement by Emmerson Mnangagwa was widely welcomed by Zimbabweans. However, hopes of significant change were dashed by the nature of his cabinet appointments, which indicated greater continuity than change vis-à-vis the Mugabe era. Mnangagwa is likely to pursue an ag...
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This article considers how the erosion of democracy in South Africa since 1994 might be addressed through sortition, the random selection of citizens to perform public tasks. Drawing upon the recent essay outlining the case Against Elections by David Van Reybrouck [(2016). Against Elections: The Case for Democracy. London: Bodley Head], which paint...
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How South Africa Works and Must Do Better by Jeffrey Herbst and Greg Mills . London: Hurst & Co. 2015. Pp. 226. £25 (pbk). - Volume 54 Issue 4 - Roger Southall
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Similarities between the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) and the African National Congress of South Africa pose the question whether South Africa faces a ‘Zimbabwean future’. In seeking to address this question, authors have compared the two parties in terms of ‘party dominance’ and ‘electoral authoritarianism’. However, t...
Chapter
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Similarities between the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) and the African National Congress of South Africa pose the question whether South Africa faces a ‘Zimbabwean future’. In seeking to address this question, authors have compared the two parties in terms of ‘party dominance’ and ‘electoral authoritarianism’. However, t...
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Rising state expenditure threatens to outstrip the South African government's ability to pay. This danger is merely a symptom of and challenge to the predatory characteristics of the ‘party-state’ erected by the ruling African National Congress (ANC), notably as they are exhibited under the presidency of Jacob Zuma. The ANC government is increasing...
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The political entrenchment of the African National Congress (ANC) as the ruling party in South Africa over the last two decades has given rise to an extensive literature focussing upon negative internal trends such as factionalism, the manipulation of internal electoral processes, the pursuit of individual wealth, internal disorder, and increasing...
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Against the background of celebrations about the rise of a middle class in Africa and its widely posited role in promoting democracy, this paper explores the politics of the black middle class in South Africa. It does so by examining three propositions: first, that the black middle class was a positive force in the struggle for liberation and democ...
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Contemporary interest in the black African middle class requires holistic attention to how this class has developed historically. In what follows, the origins of the African middle class are located in the efforts of Christian missionaries to create a literate, ‘civilized’ African elite. The resultant middle class was defined by its employment in p...
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This article contributes to a growing literature on the character of leadership, democracy and governance espoused by post-liberation governments, focusing on the African National Congress (ANC) as a political party. The article provides a brief overview of the two most common approaches to analysing the ANC's transition from a national liberation...
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Constribution to the Debate on the Political Culture in (Southern) African States in Africa Spectrum.
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Le développement de l'enseignement supérieur dans les anciennes colonies britanniques repose sur deux séries distinctes de principes: a) spécialisation entre université et collèges techniques; b) organisation sur une base régionale ou nationale d'après la capacité de la zone de fournir un nombre suffisant d'étudiants. Les auteurs soutiennent que ta...
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Cet article esquisse les images contradictoires des travailleurs émigrés. La perspective dominante considére les émigrants comme des syndicalistes malgré eux dans la mesure où ils sont soumis à une contrainte et à un contrôle extrêmes; cependant, des analystes ont déclaré plus récemment que précisément parce que les émigrants sont plus vulnérables...
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Cet article tente d'éclairer davantage le rôle économique des intermédiaires dans l'économie coloniale de la Côte d'Or. Ces intermédiaires facilitent notamment le mouvement du cacao des producteurs ruraux vers le marché mondial. L'article met fin au silence qui a trop longtemps existé au sujet de leur rôle politique dans le ralentissement de la pro...
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The negotiated settlement of 1994 established South Africa as a constitutional democracy. Under Nelson Mandela, the new democracy basked in a glow of national reconciliation, early growth, and optimism. Subsequently, however, the national sense of collective well-being has declined. Racial inequality has narrowed, but the fundamental features of th...
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Argues that despite structuring the result in its favour, ZANU-PF outplayed the MDC in the election.
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Le développement de la classe moyenne noire a été délibérément retardé durant le régime de la ségrégation et de l’apartheid. Économiquement, une couche de classe moyenne noire était perçue comme une concurrence potentielle à l’accumulation de richesses par les blancs. Politiquement, elle était perçue comme un groupe exprimant ses exigences d’égalit...
Book
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The liberation movements of Southern Africa arose to combat racism, colonialism and settler capitalism and engaged in armed struggle to establish democracy. After victory over colonial and white minority regimes, they moved into government embodying the hopes and aspirations of their mass of supporters and of widespread international solidarity mov...
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The stubborn past: NP questions about ANC rule - Volume 50 Issue 3 - Roger Southall
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The Journal of Contemporary African Studies is from early 2012 undergoing a change in its editorial structure, with Fred Hendricks, Dean of Humanities at Rhodes University, taking over from myself as Chief Editor and assuming the major burden of the day-to-day management. Over the subsequent decades, AISA was to become strongly associated with that...
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Review Article: Ian Scoones, Nelson Marongwe, Blasio Mavedzenge, Jacob Mahenehene, Felix Murimbarimba and Crispen Sukume (2010), Zimbabwe’s Land Reform: Myths and Realities, London: James Currey, ISBN 978-1-84701-024-7; Harare: Weaver Press, ISBN 978-1-77922-110-0; Johannesburg: Jacana Media, ISBN 978-1-77009-985-2, 272 pp.Morgan Tsvangirai (with T...
Article
The abstract for this document is available on CSA Illumina.To view the Abstract, click the Abstract button above the document title.
Article
Contemporary debate in South Africa is not just about whether democracy will survive, but about the quality of that democracy if it does. The role, functions, legitimacy and capacity of political opposition, in a situation where it is highly fragmented, constitutes a key aspect of this debate, most notably because of status of the African National...
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The introduction to this collection raised a series of questions around the project of political opposition in South Africa given the challenges posed by consolidating democracy given the emergence of the African National Congress (ANC) as a ‘dominant party’. In many ways, the different contributors may be interpreted as having grappled with the is...
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The ANC Underground in South Africa, 1950–1976 by SuttnerRaymondBoulder, CO and London: First Forum Press, 2009. Pp. x+199, £44.50 (hbk). - Volume 48 Issue 2 - ROGER SOUTHALL
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Placing 'liberal democracy' as a polar opposite to 'participatory democracy' is less than helpful, particularly in the African situation. In this article I suggest an alternative approach to democracy which I think is more constructive, and which, equally, I think, will prove useful in guiding our thinking about political participation.
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Sociology in South Africa has long prioritised the labour movement in its research activities. This timely publication comes out of this strong tradition and marks a certain 'coming of age' in my view. Taking Democracy Seriously (TDS) consists of a readable report on a survey conducted with 643 COS ATU members across the country. The main issue, fo...
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South Africans voted in their country’s fourth democratic general election on 22 April 2009. The African National Congress (ANC) again secured a substantial victory. It might seem that the 2009 Elections proved to be “business as usual”. Yet such a conclusion is unjustified, for events had conspired to generate excitement about this particular cont...
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Jacob Zuma's defeat of Thabo Mbeki's bid to serve a third term as the president of the African National Congress (ANC) at the party's 52nd National Conference in Polokwane in December 2007 provoked a torrent of analysis. In large part, this was because Zuma himself was a highly controversial and contradictory figure. On the one hand, the ANC's new...
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South Africans voted in their country.s fourth democratic general election on 22 April 2009. The African National Congress (ANC) again secured a substantial victory. It might seem that the 2009 Elections proved to be .business as usual.. Yet such a conclusion is unjustified, for events had conspired to generate excitement about this particular cont...
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With the rise of Zuma as President of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) has come a breakaway party, the Congress of the People (COPE). Comprising mostly senior politicians defeated in the 2008 ANC leadership elections, COPE holds the promise to become a substantial challenger to the ANC because of its shared liberation credential and const...
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The post-election crisis of January 2008 brought Kenya close to collapse and the status of a failed state. Following the abrupt proclamation of Mwai Kibaki, the incumbent president, as victor in a highly contentious presidential election, peace was disrupted by severe ethnic violence between supporters of the opposition Orange Democratic Movement (...
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In presenting its review of the conduct of the 2007 Kenyan elections, the Kriegler Commission put forward suggestions for electoral reform. The present contribution discusses these alternatives, for both parliamentary and presidential elections, against the background of experience of electoral reform in South Africa and Lesotho. Arguing about the...
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After the decline in African economies during the 1970s and 1980s, there was a return to growth in many countries during the 1990s. This was stimulated by a 'new scramble' for Africa's commodities (notably oil and minerals) and markets among not only the US and other western countries, the continent's traditional trade and investment partners, but...
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Since 1994, the black majority African National Congress (ANC) government has pursued several important goals at the same time, sometimes emphasising equity and redistribution of wealth, and sometimes advocating rapid economic growth and corporate investment. These goals have been difficult to reconcile with each other. They have led the government...
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The African National Congress (ANC) as a liberation movement drew much of its strength from its moral underpinnings as fighting for a just society. However, since its acquisition of political office in 1994, the ANC is widely perceived to have lost its moral compass. This demoralization needs to be located within the structural determinants of the...
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Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) has become one of the most high profile strategies of African National Congress (ANC) government. Yet BEE has also become highly controversial, critics arguing variously that it serves as a block to foreign investment, encourages a re-racialisation of the political economy, and promotes the growth of a small but rem...
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Before the democratisation of South Africa in1994, blacks were overwhelmingly excluded from political and economic rights, while the politics of whites, who were enfranchised, revolved around identity as well as racial exclusivity. Necessarily, therefore, the democratic settlement was involved with accommodating racial and ethnic differences. The a...
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Major controversy surrounds 'Black Economic Empowerment' (BEE), the set of strategic initiatives undertaken by the African National Congress (ANC) since it has come to power in South Africa in 1994 to challenge white domination of the economy. The principal criticisms - which gain considerable airing in the media - are, variously, that BEE has over...
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The following summary of the Report of the Ndungu Commission on Illegal and Irregular allocation of public land provides an insight into a critical, recent episode in the struggles over 'land' and 'graft' in Kenya. To put it in the latest context, it is first worth noting that on the 'graft' front, the Commission can chalk up one partial victory in...
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The persistence of the debate about whether the African National Congress (ANC) can or should be characterized as a "dominant party" was illustrated by exchanges between the country's leading political parties during the 2004 general election. The ANC, which views its hegemony as expressing its popularity, rejects its depiction as a 'dominant party...
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Voters in the small southern African kingdom of Lesotho went to the polls on 25 May 2002, in the third general election since the country returned to democracy following a long period of civilian dictatorship (1970–1986) and military rule (1986–1993). Voting in all Lesotho’s general elections has usually gone smoothly, yet in every case prior to 20...
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The emphasis initially laid by the African National Congress (ANC) on national reconciliation after 1994 meant that its ideas about Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) were non-threatening to white interests. However, the government's recent strategy is more assertive, having the aim of creating a black capitalist class, which is both ‘patriotic’ and...
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This article is based on a survey of popular attitudes towards the pure list system that is South Africa's proportional representation electoral system. While the reported findings are broadly positive there are some notable exceptions, located disproportionately among racial minorities and also among sizable numbers of black respondents. Pure prop...
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Extracted from text ... 86 86 ADAPTING TO ELECTORAL SYSTEM CHANGE Voters in Lesotho, 2002 Roddy Fox and Roger Southall Roddy Fox is Professor of Geography, Rhodes University, Grahamstown 6140 South Africa. Tel: +27 046 603.8722; Fax: +27 046 636.1199; e-mail: R.Fox@ru.ac.za Roger Southall is Executive Director, Human Sciences Research Counc...
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The Mbeki government's failure to take action against the blatantly undemocratic behaviour of the Mugabe regime in Zimbabwe, despite its commitment to the peer review mechanism proposed under the New Partnership for African Development, is highlighted by South Africa's armed intervention into Lesotho to quell post-electoral disturbances in 1998. Al...
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The peace dividend in southern Africa may serve to underpin NEPAD's bid for economic growth and development. However, it is by no means so clear that the region is embarked upon an unambiguous progression towards the consolidation of democracy. Indeed, there are deeply worrying indications that the democratic wave which broke upon the region's shor...

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