While Africa shares the common experience of international borders defined by foreign powers, it has more countries than Europe and almost double the population, so any generalisation is problematic. The paper poses more questions than answers, but it shows a very high level of popular unrest in a limited number of countries and, in contrast to some theories, considerable resistance among workers (as distinct from the urban poor). The picture is messy, one of substantial unevenness, though one that presses us to rethink the first and second waves, and similar movements elswehere in the contemporary world.
Lexi Alexander holds the South African Research Chair in Social Change. She is Director of the Centre for Social Change and Professor of Sociology at the University of Johannesburg. Currently she is a Visiting Fellow at the IWM.
Comments by Jakob Krameritsch (Academy of Fine Arts Vienna)