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POL201Y1 Lecture Notes - Sokoto Caliphate, Indirect Rule, Ethnolinguistics

Political Science
Course Code
Sophia Moreau

of 3
POL201Y1-Oct. 4, 2010
Imperialism: process of maintaining an empire, by force political collaboration, social and
political factors
o Africa was affected by it in the late 19th and early 20th century
After de-colonization Africa is defined by its poor political state and only a few nations have
been able to maintain a democratic government
The establishment of European culture severely affected Africa’s social and political
Imperialism also brought with it Christianity
o 460 million people/ 45% of Africa is Christian, it took away from Africa’s traditional
o A large part of Africa is also Muslim
What explains persistent wide disparities in wealth?
64 countries were previously colonies, many of them poor today
o Correlation between former colonies and poverty
Nigeria: did not become Nigeria until after colonization; during the ‘scramble for Africa’ colonizers
separated indigenous people
Pre colonizing conditions:
Political systems:
Political systems are different in the north and south of Nigeria
o South there is the Aruba clan, they had chief/kings but they had very little power
because there was a decentralization of power means less resistance when colonial
powers will come, no single united army. Little extractive possibility (resource extraction
from their population) cannot collect taxes, no way of coercing there population and
raise armies
o North, Sokoto caliphate, large centralised for the most part common religion of Islam,
had some economic development and have some resistance to colonial rule, had some
extractive power
The differences between north and the south greatly shaped there conditions today
Slave Trade:
Involved in the slave trade since 16th century, some identify this as the reason
underdevelopment persists until today
Low Technology:
Agricultural tools are basic hand tools, ploughing tools non-existent
Eventually has a textile export capacity, kano cloth
POL201Y1-Oct. 4, 2010
Traits of the colonial state
Indirect rule
Invented by Lord Lugard, practise of ruling through chiefs which instil loyalty, were able to keep
a portion of the taxes they collected, and if they failed to comply they would be removed
Colonialism gives them the power that they lacked before to coerce there population, they are
representative of the colonial power
Minimal state
The reason many colonial powers practise indirect rule, they were not willing to spend money
on having their own people rule the states
The ability to tax is a symbol of holding power, monopolization
The population is taxed little instead imports and exports are taxed so that they may control the
State is necessary to produce development and with minimal state, minimal development
Extractive Economy
The British encouraged cash crop from export and importation of manufactured European
goods: extractive economy
Hindered the development of any sort of industry in colonies like Nigeria
Undercut any local production of textiles in the colonies
o Raw material extraction is more significant than the reselling because African markets
were small
Separated three regions in Nigeria, entire south missionaries would operate, they were bought
schools the language of instruction was English, they were not allowed in the Islamic north
o The Aruba were the backbone of the anti-colonial movement, the north did not really
participate and after independence they were in a position to provide political voices
(most university graduates in Nigeria were from Aruba)
As the country becomes independent in 1960 it has to become independent of colonial power
Colonial origins of comparative development
Different types of colonization policies created different sets of institutions
o Good correlation between institutions that secure property rights and income per capita
o Sure property sure source of income, but if the property is likely to be seized by the
government there is no chance of industrialization, development etc. Patents are like
securing property
o Requires a good market system, rational tax system, independent judiciary, education
system, etc.
POL201Y1-Oct. 4, 2010
o Endogeneity problem institutions wealth insitutions, what comes first
o Exogenous relationship something else institutions & wealth
Non-settler colonies (usually due to high potential settler morality) tended to have much more
extractive institutions
The main form of colonial institutions- good or bad, extractive or not persists today
Nigeria explained by the fact that there was high mortality rates, the higher the mortality rates
the loser the colonial penetration, lack of establishment of the political entities and
o Colonial powers set up extractive powers in all of Africa with the exception of South
Africa, with the intention of not investing back
(potential) settle mortality settlements early institutions current institutions current
Alternative explanations for variations in per capita income
Ethnolinguistic fragmentation: cannot be used as an explanation for disparities in wealth
Distance from the equator: strong correlation, closer to equator = poorer; no good explanation
as to why