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Ghana in Transition

Ghana in Transition

DAVID ERNEST APTER
Copyright Date: 1972
Pages: 462
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt13x162z
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  • Book Info
    Ghana in Transition
    Book Description:

    Contents: PART I:1. The African Challenge to Democracy. PART II: 2. Historical Background. 3. The Physical and Economic Environment. PART III: 4. The Traditionally Oriented System. 5. Political Organization Among the Akan. 6. Patterns of Indirect Rule. 7. The Politics of Indirect Rule. 8. Towards Autonomy Within the Commonwealth. 9. The Structures of Secular Government. 10. Patterns of Gold Coast Politics. I I. The Legislative Assembly in Action. 12. National Issues and Local Politics. PART IV: 13. Control Factors in Institutional Transfer. 14. Prospects of Gold Coast Democracy. 15. Ghana as a New Nation. Index.

    Originally published in 1973.

    ThePrinceton Legacy Libraryuses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-6702-8
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. PREFACE
    (pp. vii-x)
    D.A.
  3. PREFACE TO SECOND PRINTING
    (pp. x-xiii)
    D.A.
  4. PREFACE TO FIRST REVISED EDITION
    (pp. xiv-xx)
    David E. Apter
  5. PREFACE TO SECOND REVISED EDITION
    (pp. xxi-xxvi)
    D.A.
  6. Table of Contents
    (pp. xxvii-2)
  7. PART I

    • CHAPTER 1 THE AFRICAN CHALLENGE TO DEMOCRACY
      (pp. 3-20)

      Host to a variety of social, economic, and intellectual stimuli, Africa finds its destiny directed into new and uneasy patterns. In the vast subcontinent today we witness a clash of cultures and ideas as the tribal peoples of many colonial territories move toward Western forms of social organization.

      Such a process is a challenge to Western political practice and belief. Can the content and structures of democratic popular government serve as a medium of reintegration for the many peoples of Africa as they seek to modify their activities and their aspirations in the light of modern practice? Is the centuries-old...

  8. PART II

    • CHAPTER 2 HISTORICAL BACKGROUND
      (pp. 21-38)

      While, in the absence of recorded materials, the early background of the Gold Coast is a compound of mystery and conjecture, there are hints of ancient commerce and contact between the Middle East and the West African coast. It is supposed that the highly prized Aggrey beads found in the Gold Coast are of Carthaginian or Phoenician origin. Hanno, the Carthaginian, is known to have made an expedition along the West African coast, although the narrative of his journey has come down to us in translated and abridged form, the original document having been lost.¹

      Apparently the Stone Age overlapped...

    • CHAPTER 3 THE PHYSICAL AND ECONOMIC ENVIRONMENT
      (pp. 39-79)

      To some, the word “Africa” conjures up visions of dense jungle or arid plateaus, pestilent swamps and miasmic mists, all under a sweltering sun which always shines, even when it is raining. If the visitor to the Gold Coast carries such expectations, he is initially disappointed. He finds forest and savannah, mountains and plains, fertile country, sparse range, but few of the extremes attributed to the tropics.

      The visitor will rapidly become aware of the myriads of insects which, because of the lack of temperature extremes, flourish in profusion. He will not see the more lurking dangers, like the parasites...

  9. PART III

    • CHAPTER 4 THE TRADITIONALLY ORIENTED SYSTEM
      (pp. 80-98)

      It would be impossible to comprehend the substance of political institutional transfer without some understanding of the indigenous systems upon which the secular structures impinge. The traditionally oriented system forms the base point from which our analysis will proceed. The materials in Parts I and II have been predominantly descriptive, placing the Gold Coast in both historical and modern settings. Yet so far we have ignored the more complex processes by which institutional transfer is manifest in political behavior, nor have we attempted to account for certain patterns of behavior which appear significant in Gold Coast political development. The attempt...

    • CHAPTER 5 POLITICAL ORGANIZATION AMONG THE AKANS
      (pp. 99-118)

      In speaking of tribal political organization, we shall use the Ashanti system for discussion purposes. While this is by no means the only form of political organization, it is perhaps the most highly developed of those found in the Gold Coast. Its component features are useful for the purpose of this study. In addition, more anthropological materials of a high standard are available for Ashanti than for any other highly organized ethnic group in the Gold Coast.

      One of the basic differences between the primitive family units¹ and those which subsequently developed was the attribution of more specific functions and...

    • CHAPTER 6 PATTERNS OF INDIRECT RULE
      (pp. 119-130)

      The general impact of formal British authority upon the indigenous political systems of the Gold Coast will be the object of concern in the discussion which follows. Adequate statements regarding policy are abundant in British government publications and documents as well as in various recent studies, and we shall not discuss British administrative policy during the period from World War I to World War II in great detail.¹ Nevertheless, most of the events which form the basis of this discussion occurred between the two wars. It is sufficient to mention that earlier consolidation of British power in the Gold Coast...

    • CHAPTER 7 THE POLITICS OF INDIRECT RULE
      (pp. 131-158)

      The British Colonial Service is the agency of colonial rule. Through its functions and organization it has created a distinctive pattern of authority which is adaptive to conditions of local administration and territorial governance. It is both a fully articulated bureaucracy, and yet a flexible system of role structures. The balance in the bureaucratic system between office and role, between rigidity and flexibility, is perhaps one of the unique features of British colonial rule which can, without changing organizational structure, promote political evolution to self-government while assuming a position of residual control.

      As a system of offices the Colonial Service...

    • CHAPTER 8 TOWARDS AUTONOMY WITHIN THE COMMONWEALTH
      (pp. 159-174)

      Under indirect rule, as has been indicated, a conflicting set of political norms, deriving sanctity and legitimacy from fundamentally different sources, was counterpoised within the organizational framework of the political administration. During this period greater access to the formal secular organs of government was granted both to the chiefs, whose authority increasingly came from secular sources, and to the intelligentsia, whose authority was directly secular in derivation, although many were of or related to a royal lineage.

      Yet the peculiar feature of Gold Coast indirect rule was its emphasis upon the reintegration of social life around the structures of central...

    • CHAPTER 9 THE STRUCTURES OF SECULAR GOVERNMENT
      (pp. 175-198)

      The Coussey Commission recommended a new legislature, in creased in numbers and representative of “all sections of the community in the deliberation of national affairs.”¹ It envisioned a more elaborate two-chambered legislative body than the unicameral assembly finally granted, but it modeled the entire structure upon the British parliamentary system, with an upper senate and a lower house of assembly. It proposed a responsible executive council or cabinet on which three members would be ex-officio.

      Recognizing that the entire structure of indirect rule had been badly shaken, the commission, in effect, proposed to do away with it in substance. In...

    • CHAPTER 10 THE PATTERNS OF GOLD COAST POLITICS
      (pp. 199-233)

      Following hard on the Constitution of 1950, the general election of 1951 was held in a climate of enthusiasm, excitement, and expectancy. In the Colony and Ashanti, a total of 663,069 voters registered, about 40 per cent of the eligible population.¹ In some rural areas apathy towards registration was apparent. An official report on the elections indicates that the attitude of the local chief was of great importance in this respect. In many instances no one would register until the chief had given his approval, and some were, for one reason or another, reluctant to support the elections wholeheartedly. Where...

    • CHAPTER 11 THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY IN ACTION
      (pp. 234-256)

      The Volta Debate indicates some of the general attitudes held by members of the old Legislative Assembly in regard to control, foreign capital, and concepts of imperialism, as well as some of the problems of the C.P.P. leadership in pushing a “capitalistic” venture after preaching socialism.

      Under the proposed Volta Scheme, an attempt will be made to lift the Gold Coast from its economic dependence upon only one crop, cocoa, and allow a more diversified income-producing production schedule. With large reserves of bauxite and with the Volta River as a source of hydroelectric power, the plan is to develop a...

    • CHAPTER 12 NATIONAL ISSUES AND LOCAL POLITICS
      (pp. 257-272)

      Manya Krobo is a small area lying near the Volta River. It is a collection of villages and towns, largely constructed of “swish,” like most of the other towns and villages of the Colony. Nearby Akuse, on the Volta River, was once a flourishing trade center which declined when a major road was put through the area. For a time cocoa was a main industry, but the swollen shoot disease decimated the cocoa trees and Krobo income has seriously declined. Emigration to neighboring states like Akim Abuakwa, which is less affected by swollen shoot, has proceeded rapidly and the Krobos...

    • CHAPTER 13 CONTROL FACTORS IN INSTITUTIONAL TRANSFER
      (pp. 273-290)

      We have attempted to indicate some of the processes of politics which occur when a colonial area is simultaneously moving towards economic and social development and towards greater political integration around political structures made available to the indigenous population. We have tried to indicate some of the basic kinds of conflicts which becomc manifest in such a process, and how they are worked out at the levels of central and local authority. In viewing the traditional system first, we made an effort to define some of the crucial factors which maintained that system. Subsequently, we indicated the progressively complex impacts...

    • CHAPTER 14 PROSPECTS OF GOLD COAST DEMOCRACY
      (pp. 291-324)

      In this study we have attempted to trace the impact of one set of social stimuli upon another in order to shed light on the predominantly political aspects of this kind of process. We have phrased the problem as political institutional transfer. We have examined the traditional environment of the Gold Coast, and tried to abstract significant variables which emerged when alien structures were superimposed upon those that came before.

      In particular we singled out the Ashanti for special attention and indicated some of the crucial social and political structures which gave meaning and vitality to the lives of the...

    • CHAPTER 15 GHANA AS A NEW NATION
      (pp. 325-361)

      “A Revolutionary Government, that is a government anxious by word and proven deed for rapid changes in the interests of the mass of the people, has been set in Ghana over the past few days by His High Dedication Osagyefo the President.”¹ With these words theEvening Newscommented on the government formed after several senior members including the Minister of Finance of Ghana, Mr. K. A. Gbedemah were removed from office and stripped of party membership. A new political generation had arrived, militant, angry and determined. TheEvening Newswas their newspaper as was theGhanaian Times. They desperately...

    • CHAPTER 16 GHANA IN TRANSITION: A RETROSPECTIVE VIEW
      (pp. 362-414)

      One of the intriguing problems confronting anyone who wishes to understand Ghanaian political life is how to determine what is shadow, rhetoric, or fantasy, and what is substance—concrete, and fundamental. What makes this question even more confusing is the openness which, more than in most societies, characterizes the political and social aspects of Ghana life. All appears available to public scrutiny. Such openness has its pitfalls because even well-articulated events defy easy evaluations. Clear evidence of ethnic conflict such as prevails between the Ewes and the Akan or Twi-speaking groups does not necessarily mean “tribalism.” It may, but then...

  10. APPENDIX. A NOTE ON METHODOLOGY
    (pp. 415-424)
  11. INDEX
    (pp. 425-434)