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The African National Congress and the regeneration of political power: People, party, policy
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The African National Congress and the regeneration of political power: People, party, policy (Paperback)

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In the twenty years of transitional and democratic politics in South Africa, Susan Booysen constantly traversed two worlds, as direct observer and analyst-researcher. First, there is the world of the African National Congress (ANC), in which there is a sense of representation of the people in the contexts of elections and modern government. In ANC parlance, this is the time of the `national democratic revolution' and there is continuous progress.

The other world is that of critical observation and analysis. Here the observer-researcher negotiates the route between counter-truths, assessing how the ANC's hegemonic power project of close to a century has materialised in the period of government power. It is a shifting target that is being analysed. The `answers' are often at variance with the officially-projected ANC perspectives.

The ANC and the Regeneration of Political Power straddles both worlds, but is unapologetically analytical. It builds on the empathy of understanding the struggles and achievements along with deferred dreams and frustrations. It moves to analyses of power, victories, strategy, engineering, manipulation, denials and corrections, obfuscation ... and causes for celebration. Anchored in this world, the book focuses on discerning the bigger picture, which transcends the daily and monthly variances of who is in power and who in favour with those who are in power.

Booysen has constructed the book around the framework of political power. Her analysis focuses on how the ANC, in twenty years of political power, has acted to continuously shape, maintain and regenerate power in relation to its internal structures and processes, opposition parties, people, government and the state.

The chapters are all anchored in ongoing research and monitoring over this period, sometimes from the sidelines, but at other times with one foot in the political sphere.

In 2011 the power configurations of and around the ANC are converging to deliver a present that holds vexing uncertainties. By dissecting contemporary power dimensions and comparing them with what has gone before, Booysen explores the construction of the political power `complex' of the ANC. In so doing she offers insights into how South African politics, which is in many ways synonymous with the politics of the ANC, is likely to unfold in years, possibly decades, to come.

History & PoliticsHistory: specific events & topicsColonialism & imperialismHistory & PoliticsHistory: specific events & topicsNational liberation & independence, post-colonialismHistory & PoliticsPolitics & governmentPolitical ideologiesHistory & PoliticsPolitics & governmentPolitical parties Publisher: Wits University Press Publication Date: 15/11/2011 ISBN-13: 9781868145423  Details: Type: Paperback Format: Books
Availability: Currently unavailable. Foyles can order for despatch to customer when the publisher is re-supplied on 22/05/2018.  

Susan Booysen is a political analyst and commentator who is currently based at Wits University's Graduate School of Public and Development Management (P&DM).

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