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This book addresses a pertinent issue in comparative politics: how can the discipline do analytical justice to regions of the world that differ historically from the Western experience? For decades the West has served as a baseline against which all other regions are assessed, most recently in studies of democratization. Structural differences between regions have been ignored in favour of explanations based on human agency and institutions. In Theorizing in Comparative Politics, Goran Hyden uses the countries of Africa as an empirical case to demonstrate what a structural approach adds to the comparative study of democracy. Priorities like state-building challenge the effort to shape democratic regimes and call for explanations that recognize the impact of local power dynamics on the prospects for democratic development. Informative and thoughtful, this book sheds light on issues that have been underexplored in the field in recent years.
Catherine Boone - Professor of Comparative Politics, London School of Economics
Benjamin Smith - UF Term Professor of Political Science, University of Florida
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