Paper $21.95 ISBN: 9781783601325 Published June 2015 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781783601332 Published July 2015 For sale in North and South America only

Africa

Why Economists Get It Wrong

Morten Jerven

Africa

Morten Jerven

Distributed for Zed Books

176 pages | 5 x 7 3/4 | © 2015
Paper $21.95 ISBN: 9781783601325 Published June 2015 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781783601332 Published July 2015 For sale in North and South America only
For the first time in generations, Africa is spoken of these days with enthusiastic hope: no longer seen as a hopeless morass of poverty, the continent instead is described as “Africa Rising,” a land of enormous economic potential that is just beginning to be tapped.

With Africa: Why Economists Get It Wrong, Morten Jerven offers a bracing corrective. Neither story, he shows, is accurate. In truth, most African economies have been growing rapidly since the 1990s—and, until a collapse in the ’70s and ’80s, they had been growing reliably for decades. Puncturing weak analysis that relies too much on those two lost decades, Jerven redraws our picture of Africa’s past, present, and potential.
Contents
Introduction
1. Misunderstanding economic growth in Africa
2. Trapped in history?
3. African growth recurring
4. Africa's statistical tragedy?
Conclusion
Review Quotes
Laura Seay and Kim Yi Dionne | Washington Post
"Excellent. . . . [Jerven’s] points are elegantly argued and although he delves into extremely technical economic concepts and methods, Africa: Why Economists Get It Wrong is readable and easy for a nonspecialist to understand. But specialists in particular must read Jerven, and take seriously his claims."
Choice
“[Jerven] demolishes much of the best-known work by prominent economists who very clearly do get it wrong and in so doing promote a false and unfortunate impression of Africa as failed economically. . . . Everyone interested in Africa or in the great mysteries of how to understand economic growth can benefit from this excellent book. Essential.”
International Socialism
"Jerven provides a very useful explanation and argument as to why Western policies or technologies cannot simply be grafted onto the current reality of Africa."
African Studies Quarterly
“In his incisive book, Africa: Why Economists Get It Wrong, Jerven provides a critical analysis of the economic development literature on Africa.”
 
Foreign Affairs
“According to Jerven, the dominant narrative of African economic failure persists because economists ask the wrong question: they seek to explain why Africa has failed rather than show how Africa has actually performed. In fact, over the last century, many African economies have experienced episodes of both growth and decline. . . . Ultimately, Jerven concludes that although the narrative of chronic failure is a distortion, so is the ‘Africa rising’ narrative.”
 
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