Paper $29.95 ISBN: 9781786991355 Published October 2017 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781786991362 Published November 2017 For sale in North and South America only

Burkina Faso

A History of Power, Protest and Revolution

Ernest Harsch

Burkina Faso

Ernest Harsch

Distributed for Zed Books

352 pages | 5 1/2 x 8 1/2
Paper $29.95 ISBN: 9781786991355 Published October 2017 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781786991362 Published November 2017 For sale in North and South America only
In October 2014, huge protests across Burkina Faso succeeded in overthrowing the long-entrenched regime of their authoritarian ruler, Blaise Compaoré. Defying all expectations, this popular movement went on to defeat an attempted coup by the old regime, making it possible for a transitional government to organize free and fair elections the following year. In doing so, the people of this previously obscure West African nation surprised the world, and their struggle stands as one of the few instances of a popular democratic uprising succeeding in postcolonial sub-Saharan Africa.
 
For over three decades, Ernest Harsch has researched and reported from Burkina Faso, interviewing subjects ranging from local democratic activists to revolutionary icon Thomas Sankara, the man once dubbed “Africa’s Che Guevara.” In this book, Harsch provides a compelling and up-to-date history of this little understood country, from the French colonial period to the Compaoré regime and the movement that finally deposed him.
 
Contents
Acknowledgements
Acronyms
 
1 Insurgent Citizens and the State
2 Uneasy Colonial Roots
3 Ministries of Plunder
4 From Crisis to Revolution
5 Refashioning the State
6 On Fragile Ground
7 Mobilization from Above and Below
8 Coup and “Rectification”
9 “Democracy” with a Heavy Hand
10 Enrichment in a Land of Poverty
11 Tug of War within a State
12 Contention in the Streets
13 From Confrontation to Insurrection
14 A Troubled Transition
15 A New Burkina Faso?
 
Notes
References
Index
 
Review Quotes
Jack A. Goldstone, George Mason University
“A major achievement. Taking us from independence to the 2014 popular revolution, this brilliant book enriches our understanding of both revolutions and African history.”
Laura Seay, Colby College
“Smart, accessible, and essential reading for all who are interested in African politics. It provides new insight into Burkina Faso’s political history, from Sankara to the 2014 uprising.”
Marie-Soleil Frère, Université libre de Bruxelles
“A fascinating journey through the turbulent history of Burkina Faso. This books shows how the 2014 uprising was both a remarkable and original episode in the country’s long tradition of protests and political inventiveness.”
Zachariah Mampilly, coauthor of Africa Uprising: Popular Protest and Political Change
“A riveting and accessible account of the insurgent actions of ordinary citizens in Burkina Faso, and of the righteous anger that fuels them. Provides excellent insights into the power of popular protest in Africa and beyond.”
Leonardo A. Villalón, University of Florida
“Burkina Faso finds itself at the heart of the current Sahelian crisis, while simultaneously navigating its own revolutionary democratic transition. Harsch’s insightful and lively account offers keen insights into the political history of a fascinating—yet unfortunately understudied—country.”
Pierre Englebert, Pomona College
“Few outsiders understand Burkina Faso better than Harsch, and nobody has written about it with more clarity and elegance. This is a sympathetic yet rigorous introduction to Burkina’s political history, the best there is in English.”
Maggie Dwyer, University of Edinburgh
“A must-read for anyone interested in popular protests in Africa. Harsch provides a compelling history of the making of modern Burkina Faso, based on decades of research and an intimate knowledge of the country.”
For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
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