Midlands state university faculty of arts

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Master of Arts in Development Studies

MAD 701 Theories and Strategies in Development and Change

Lecturer: Mr Percyslage Chigora
Office: 42
Tel Ext: 293
Email: chigorap@msu.ac.zw
Consultation Hours: by appointment.


The module examines dominant paradigms and theories of development; measurement of development; the making of the global economy; rights, democracy and conflict; political economy of resources, oil and mineral led growth, labour migration, population and development, industrialisation and technology; household survival strategies, employment and the informal sector; sustainable development, environmental movements. Chronologically, it is built upon elementary studies of economic, political and social ideas. The module is designed, given the proceeding background, to provide to initiated students of development studies for more directed and critical inquiry into the nature of politics, society, economy and the state. Every community has a worldview, or a philosophical frame of reference as to what is “good” and what is “bad”. Similarly, human communities have each normative political, economic and social basis of existence. Such a basis being a sum of total of basic ideas, notions and principles of how we have to sustain our lives or change them gradually or rapidly, violently or non violently /peacefully. Imagine what human life would be without government, laws and the state. The module overally exposes outstanding thinkers and practitioners who committed their intellectual enterprise to general improvement of human beings.

For Africa today four views emerges:

  1. The Pan Africanist generation

  2. The Nationalist Generation

  3. The Globalist Generation

  4. The Renascent generation/ the New Pan-Africanist


Guidelines on writing post graduate assignment.
The candidate need to continuously self appraise him/herself. These are some of the issues to look for:

  • Presence of the central problem

  • The existence of evidence in its favour

  • Presence of relevant evidence

  • Valuable conclusion

The candidate must be continuously asking the following questions.

  1. Does it show masterly of relevant literature in the field?

  2. Does it answer the question(s)?

  3. Does it have a central argument/thesis?

  4. Is it argued in a straightforward, clear and coherent manner?

  5. Are the arguments supported by evidence, either theoretical or empirical?

  6. Is the evidence adequate and correct?

  7. Does it take into account major counter arguments and critique them?

  8. Is the answer literate or well written

For oral self-examination a candidate needs to:

  1. Respond to weakness/gaps in their argument

  2. Draw relevant literature and empirical evidence to bolster arguments

  3. Demonstrate broad understanding of literature and how it might relate to the research agenda


Students are required to submit 3 assignments by the end of semester.

1. TOPIC/RESEARCH QUESTIONS: minimum references 50

2. BOOK REVIEW: minimum references 5

3. GENERATE NEW THEORY/STRATEGY: minimum references 15.

All lectures are compulsory.
Unexpected absence results in the loss of marks. A student who is ill or has other circumstances that he/she believes warrant excuse must see the lecturer in person.


  1. Development Thought: A General Overview

  1. African Development Thought

  1. Development Thought: A Comparative Perspective

  1. Democracy, Governance and Development

  1. Conservatism, Social Change and Development

  1. Feminism and Genderisation of Change and Development Processes

  1. Fundamentalism and Development

  1. Sustainable Development

  2. Industrialisation

  3. Agricultural Development

  4. Free Market Strategies

  5. Structural Change

  6. Cancellation of international debt

  7. Trade Strategies

  8. Population Control

  9. Encourage Savings and Investment

  10. Development aid


This is not a complete list but a guide to some text that are relevant to the field.
Patrick Marnham, Fantastic Invasion:Dispatchesn from Africa
Stephen Smith, Ending Global Poverty: A Guide to What Works, Palgrave MacMillan 2005.
Paul Gready and Jonathan wEnsor, Reinventing Development? Translating Rights Based Approaches from Theory to Practice.
K N Mufuka, Africa-Essays in History, education and Development (Voice 2000)

R Dumont: False start in Africa, Prager 1974

M Thatcher: Statecraft (Harper collins 2002)
D Goulet: The cruel Choice: A new concept in theory of Development (University Press of America 1985)
Sengor Eric, Capitalism and slavery, 1961
Nkurumah Kwame, The revolutionary path, 1973
Du Bois WED , The world and Africa 1947
Diawara, Manthia, In search of Africa 1998.
Asante Molifikete, The Afrocetric Idea, 1998
Vardys, V.S Karl Marx Scientist? Revolutionary? Humanist? 1971
Ake Claude, Feasibility of Democracy in Africa.
Amin S, The future of socialism, Sapes Trust, 1990
Rodney W, How Europe Underdeveloped Africa, 1980.
Fanon F, The wretched of the Earth, 19963
Arblaster, A and Lukes, S, The good society: A book of Readings, 1971.
MacPhearson CB , The real World of Democracy 1966.
Mill J S, Utilitarianism 1962
Milliband R, The state in capitalist society: An analysis of western system of power, 1973.
Mutiso and Rohio (eds), readings in African Political Thought, 1975.
Sklar, R L, Democracy in Africa, 1982.
Kemp, T Theories of Imperialism, 1967.
Mao Tse Tung, Selected Works, 1956.
Melotti, U , Marx and the Third World 1977.
Nkurumah K, Class Struggle in Africa 1981.

Theories of political migration

Jahn Janheinz. Muntu. An outline of neo-African culture. London: Faber and Faber 1961.

Translated from the German Muntu. Umrisse der neoafrikanischen Kultur (1958) by Marjorie Grene
Reprinted, with a new introduction by Calvin C. Hernton wit the title: Muntu. African culture and the Western world - New York, Grove Press, 1990.

Wiredu Kwasi. Cultural universals and particulars: an African perspective. Bloomington: Indiana University Press 1996

Readings in African philosophy. An Akan collection. Edited by Kwame Safro. Lanham: University Press of America 1995.

 Bedu-Addo Joseph T. Wiredu on truth as opinion and the Akan language. In Philosophy in Africa: trends and perspectives. Edited by Bodunrin Peter. Ife: University of Ife Press 1985. pp. 68-90

Blakeley Thomas J. The categories of Mtu and the categories of Aristotle. In African philosophy. An introduction. Edited by Wright Richard A. Washington: University Press of America 1984. pp. 163-170

Bodunrin Peter, "The question of African philosophy," Philosophy 56: 161-179 (1981).

Dukor Maduabu, "African cosmology and ontology," Indian Philosophical Quarterly 16: 367-391 (1989).

Gyekye Kwame. An essay on African philosophical thought. The Akan conceptual scheme. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 1987.

Second revised edition: Philadelphia, Temple University Press, 1995.

African philosophy. An introduction. Edited by Wright Richard A. Washington: University Press of America 1977.

Second edition 1979; Third expanded edition 1984.

African philosophy. Edited by Floistad Guttorm. Dordrecht: Martinus Nijhoff 1987.

Contemporary philosophy. A new survey. (vol. 5).

The African philosophy reader. A text with readings. Edited by Coetzee Pieter Hendrik and Roux A.P.J. New York: Routledge 1998.

Second expanded edition 2003.

African philosophy. New and traditional perspectives. Edited by Brown Lee M. Oxford: Oxford University Press 2004.


Apostel Leo. African philosophy: myth or reality? Gent, Belgium: Story-Scientia 1981.

Wittfogel, K. A., Oriental Despotism: A comparative study of total power. 1957, New Haven: Yale University. 556.

Inkeles, A. and D. Smith, Becoming Modern: Individual change in six developing countries. 1974, Cambridge: Harvard. 437.

Dart, R. A., Man's Evolution. 1964, Institute for the Study of Man: Johannesburg. p. 16

Brohman, John. (1996). Popular Development: Rethinking the Theory & Practice of Development . Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, Ltd.

Peet, R. with Hartwick, E. (1999). Theories of Development. New York: The Guilford Press. Arndt, H.W. (1987). Economic Development: The History of an Idea. Chica­go: University of Chicago Press,

Black, J. K. (1999). Development in Theory and Practice: Paradigms and Paradoxes. Second Edition. Boulder, Colorado: Westview Press.

Baron, S., Field, J. & Schuller, T. (eds.). (2000). Social Capital: Critical Perspectives. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Carnoy, M. & Samoff, J. (1990). Education and Social Transition in the Third World. Princeton: Prince­ton University Press.

Cypher, J. M. & Dietz, J.L. (1997). The Process of Economic Development. New York: Routledge.

Eade, D. (Ed.). (2002). Development and Culture . London: Oxfam.

Escobar, Arturo. (1995). Encountering Development: The Making and Unmaking of the Third World. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press.

Hall, A. & Midgley, J. (2004). Social Policy for Development . Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Holloway, Richard. (1989). Doing Development: Governments, NGOs and the Rural Poor in Asia. London: Earthscan Publications Ltd.

Hoogvelt, Ankie. (1997). Globalization and the Postcolonial World: The New Political Economy of Development. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins Press.

Martinussen, John. (1997). Society, State & Market: A Guide to Competing Theories of Development. London: Zed Books.

Meier, G. M & Stiglitz, J. E. (Eds.). (2001). Frontiers of Development Economics. Washington, D.C.: The World Bank and Oxford University Press.

Munck, R. & O'Hearn, D. (eds.). (1999). Critical Development Theory: Contributions to a New Paradigm. London: Zed Books.

Norgaard, Richard. (1994) . Development Betrayed. London: Routledge.

Preston, Peter. (1996). Development Theory: An Introduction to the Analysis of Complex Change . London: Blackwell Publishers.

Rist, Gilbert. (1997). The History of Development: from Western Origins to Global Faith. London: Zed Books.

Sen, Amatya. (1999). Development as Freedom. New York: Random House, Inc.

So, Alvin Y. (1990).. Social Change and Development: Modernization, Dependency, and World-System Theories . Sage Library of Social Research 178. Newbury Park: Sage Publications.

Todaro, Michael P. (1994). Economic Development in the Third World. Fifth Edition. New York: Longman.

UNDP. (2001). Human Development Report 2001. New York: UNDP & Oxford Univ. Press.

David Collier and Robert Adock. 1999. “Democracy and Dichotomies: A Pragmatic Approach to Choices about Concepts.” Annual Review of Political Science 2: 537-65.

Giovanni Sartori, “Concept Misformation in Comparative Politics,” American Political Science Review 64 (1970): 1033-1053.

David Collier and Steven Levitsky, “Democracy with Adjectives: Conceptual Innovation in Comparative Research,” World Politics 49:3 (April 1997): 430-51.

Kenneth Bollen, “Political Democracy: Conceptual and Measurement Traps,” Studies in Comparative International Development 25:1 (Spring 1990): 7-24.

Amartya Sen, “Democracy as a Universal Value,” Journal of Democracy 10, no. 3 (July 1999): 3-17

Harry Eckstein, 1982.  "The Idea of Political Development:  From Dignity to Efficiency."  World Politics  34 (July), 451 486.

Frances Hagopian. Political Development, Revisited. Comparative Political Studies, Volume 33, Number 6 (August 1, 2000), pp. 880-911

Hirschman, "The Search for Paradigms as a Hindrance to Understanding," World Politics, 22 (April 1970)

Pathways to Democracy: The Political Economy of Democracy Transitions Edited by James Hollifield and Calvin Jillson. Routledge 2000.

Most of these journals are available in the main library
African Studies

Asian Journal of Communication

Development Southern Africa

Journal of African Cultural Studies

Journal of Contemporary African Studies

Journal of North African Studies

Journal of Southern African Studies

Politikon : South African Journal of Political Studies

Review of African Political Economy
Journal of Strategic Studies
International Journal of Intelligence and Counter Intelligence
Contemporary Security Policy






African Philosophical Bibliography by A. J. Smet


Bibliography of African Philosophy by Barry Hallen
















Questions to work on

  1. Identify contending issues in modern development thought

  2. Identify and discuss the contending issues in African development thought today and how does it differ from the western, Latin American and Asian development thought.

  3. Discuss the strategies of social and political change in Martin Luther King and Mahatma Ghandi. How applicable are they to Africa?

  4. Does Burke’s conservatism theory apply to the modern African society?

  5. Examine the linkage between democracy and economic development.

  6. Economic development is synonymous with economic growth. Critically examine this contention.

  7. To what extent is Islamic fundamentalism is an ideology threatening liberal democracy?

  8. The place of women in development lies in the home rather than work place. Argue you case with special reference to women in the Islamic fundamentalist world.

  9. The failure of development in Africa is as a result of the failure to democratise. Support or refute this contention with reference to declining economic situation.

  10. Discuss Fukuyama’s assertion that the acceptance of liberal democracy in most parts of the world marks the end of history.

  11. There is no enjoyment of right if they are not limited in one way or the other. Do you agree?

  12. Critically analyse Huntington’ thesis on clash of civilisation. Do you subscribe to his views? Justify your answer citing contemporary examples.

  13. Critique Nkrumah’s thesis on neo-colonialism. To what extent does the process of globalisation further the neo-colonial situation?

  14. The greatest threat to Africa’s development is globalisation. Do you agree?

  15. Examine the contribution of Nyerere and Kaunda to African development thought.

  16. The peasantry are the only revolutionary class in Africa. Critically discuss this assertion with close reference to Frantz Fanon and Amilca Cabral.
  17. Identify key classes in Africa’s development.

  18. Africa’s failure to develop is as a result of too many people staying in rural areas. Do you agree?

  19. How far true is the idea that population control in Africa is the main source of underdevelopment?

  20. Guerrilla warfare remains the only strategy for transforming the poor and the oppressed. Discuss.

  21. The African population is largely oppressed because it is too docile and forgets their history easily. Do you subscribe to that notion?

  22. Support or refute the contention that fundamental cultural reforms are a major precondition for development in developing countries.

  23. Outline the philosophical basis of Islamic Fundamentalism, and state why it has become a political problem.

  24. What problems confront democratisation in the present social and political environment in Africa?

  25. Democratisation of international institutions is the main answer to achieving international development. Do you agree?

  26. Examine the view that underdevelopment does not refer to lack of development. Relate your answer to at least two authorities.

  27. Discuss the contributions of Claude Ake to our understanding of socio-political transformation in postcolonial Africa.

  28. Critically examine the essence of religious fundamentalism in the contemporary world.

  29. With reference to a specific country critique the current strategies aimed at distributing the resources equally.

  30. “Pure greediness”. Is this the correct assertion to causes of corruption in developing countries?

  31. “The free market society is not an end in itself but an ideological means to an end” Discuss.
  32. Land reform as the Zimbabwean Situation has shown is a political issue rather than economic. Discuss with specific reference to the centrality of land reform in developing societies.

  33. NEPAD just like other North-South multilateral institutions saves the agenda of the West rather than those in Africa.

  34. A pure imperialist agenda. Is this a correct assessment of the role of WTO, IMF, and WB in Africa’s development?

  35. Thabo Mbeki’s African Renaissance is well suited for Africa’s Development. Discuss

  36. Critically analyse the centrality of multilateral institutions in facilitating development in Africa.

  37. Suggest structural changes to Africa’s Development.

  38. Suggest way of encouraging savings in Africa.

  39. Outline major issues in contemporary development cooperation.

  40. Aid as a tool of facilitating development is rather misplaced and trade is the only way for economic development. Do you agree? Substantiate your answer using relevant cases.

  41. Using Zimbabwe as a case study analyse the role of international actors in facilitating development in the 21st century.

  42. Mugabe’s struggle with the west will only be understood with time. Do you agree?

  43. Distinguish the practical visions on development of the following: Senghor, Nkrumah, Lumumba, Nyerere, Kaunda, Banda, Mobutu, Bokassa, Amin, Gadhaffi, Mandela, Mbeki, and Mugabe

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