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Browsing by Author "Tagliabue, Veera"

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  • Tagliabue, Veera (2010)
    Globalisation has created a new world order wherein individual countries' powers have diminished. This is especially true for developing countries, such as those in Africa. Africa has been striving to combat the negative impacts of globalisation using regionalisation and continental unity projects for decades, but the results thus far are not convincing. Currently, the African Union is discussing an initiative to establish a United States of Africa. Contrary to previous unity projects, this initiative is based on transnationalism, which implies the ceding of state powers to supranational bodies like a Union Government. Therefore, it is important to examine this new initiative and to evaluate whether it could help Africa turn the negative implications of globalisation into possibilities for the continent. This thesis argues that this is possible, but only if Africa is ready to accept the restrictions that are restricting unity. Due to a lack of existing research, there is also a need to examine the debate on a United States of Africa at national levels in Africa. Therefore, in this thesis, Zambia is used as a case study of one country’s internal discussion in relation to the debate at the African Union level. This thesis thus contains a larger literature review section and a section dealing with the case study. The research data consists of Zambian newspaper extracts, as well as official documents from the Zambian state and the African Union. The main research method is qualitative content analysis. The theoretical framework draws on theories of the African state and civil society, regionalisation, governing globalisation, pan-Africanism and political integration, as well as the history of African unity. The underlying aim is to increase understanding of the African state and its politics. The findings of this thesis demonstrate an existing gap between the official view of the state actors and the concerns of the African civil society. Official actors seem to support a United States of Africa more than the civil society and while the official actors emphasise ideological unity, the civil society is more concerned about the feasibility of the initiative. Moreover, the importance of how notions of 'African' identity and citizenship are defined, as well as improvements to communication between states and civil society have been identified.