Post Colonial Africa: State-Building and Economic Modernization
The professor Ali Mazrui, imaginatively titled one of his journal articles “ Africa Between the Baobab Tree and the Owl of Minerva: A Post Colonial Narrative of Memory and Learning”. The choice that Mazrui made in this title is particularly interesting; by juxtaposing two symbols, that are respectively associated with African and European cultures, he acknowledges the profound impact that Europe has left after colonization. It is true, that it is hard to glance past Africa’s colonial past, even to this day Africa tends to be seen as a foil to Europe like Chinua Achebe brilliantly stated. Despite gaining independence almost sixty years ago , most African states still seem to hold scars from their colonial past. Although colonialism lasted for only a century (which is a relatively short period of time in history), it was so intense and altering that it impacted the continent in a lasting way. Thus, it is important to determine in what ways and in which domains was the impact the most profound. Well, most African states seem to struggle in two main arenas: politics and economy. Though, colonialism affected other aspects of the African life, like on the social and cultural grounds for instance; one could argue that social colonial legacies seem to unfold from the political and economical ones, we can also further argue that the cultural legacies thought existent did not really hinder or annihilate African culture.