Mahmood Mamdani

Our universities need relevance and excellence

In shaping Africa’s universities we should take the best from two examples: Dar and Makerere

Nation state: Nyerere’s legacy

Julius Nyerere shunned populist Africanisation and curtailed civil liberties to attain his dream.

Africa’s post-colonial scourge

The 'consultancy culture' at universities across the continent has a corrosive effect on education.

Beware Human Rights Fundamentalism!

The South African lesson has guided African practice in difficult situations. In Mozambique Renamo sits in Parliament instead of in jail.

Will the UN occupy Darfur?

Significant changes are currently taking place on the ground in Darfur. The peacekeeping forces of the African Union (AU) are being replaced by a hybrid AU-UN force under overall UN control. The assumption is that the change will be for the better, but this is questionable. The balance between the military and political dimensions of peacekeeping is crucial.

Darfur: the politics of naming

The similarities between Iraq and Darfur are remarkable. The estimate of the number of civilians killed over the past three years is roughly similar. The killers are mostly paramilitaries, closely linked to the official military, which is said to be their main source of arms. The victims, too, are by and large identified as members of groups, rather than targeted as individuals.

The assault on African education

The assault on the developmentalist university came from the new global development bureaucracy, particularly the Bretton Woods institutions. They were home to a radically different developmentalism. To understand the difference, we need to take two factors into account. For a start, think of the end of colonialism, a development that left a large number of colonial bureaucrats unemployed, writes Mahmood Mamdani.

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