Afrikanizacija: Eastern European Epistemologies and African Labour
AbstractThe paper offers a critical reading of Eurocentrism and Western hegemony of social thought by highlighting the essential similarities between the African and post-1989 Eastern European experience. It argues that Eastern European local knowledge and difference should be addressed in new ways, which take into account our neo-colonial negation and subjugation. The reorientation of what I call an essentially orientalist discourse in Eastern Europe can come from renewed engagement, after a nearly thirty-year gap, with African political theory, labour activism, and resistance movements. The article offers a discussion in what ways the African experience can be paralleled with the Eastern European peripheral integration into the global capitalist economy and it argues that African social thought, which has been hitherto largely neglected in post-socialist Eastern Europe, can, indeed, have illuminating insights into a history of global marginalisation. Further, I argue, that in that sense, African social thought can be an inspiring source in order to reorient current Eastern European histories, which have been developing self-defeating, self-deprecating and self-orientalising tendencies since at least 1989. Afrikanizacija, a grand metaphor for our region’s descent into a world of neo-colonialism, should also mean that we recognise the liberating and emancipating contents of African social thought especially in the fields of labour and feminism when we look for ways to fight Western hegemony.
Bartha, E. (2013) Alienating Labour: Workers on the Road from Socialism to Capitalism in East Germany and Hungary. New
York, NY; Oxford, UK: Berghahn Books.
Berend, I. T. (2013) Case Studies on Modern European Economy: Entrepreneurship, Inventions, and Institutions. London, UK;
New York, NY: Routledge. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.4324/9780203550403
Dale, G. (2011) (ed.) First the Transition, Then the Crash: Eastern Europe in the 2000s. London, UK: Pluto.
Davis, M. (2007): Planet of Slums. London, UK: Verso.
Eross, G. and Eszter Bartha (2015) Fortress, Colony, or Interpreter? Reviewing our Peers. Intersections, East European
Journal of Society and Politics, 1(2): 4-11. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.17356/ieejsp.v1i2.115
Falola, T. and M. M. Heaton (2008) A History of Nigeria. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. 255. doi:
Gellner, E. (2008). Nations and Nationalism. 2nd ed. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.
Gowan, P. (1995) Neo-liberal Theory and Practice for Eastern Europe. New Left Review, 213.
Grosfoguel, R. (2011) Decolonizing Post-Colonial Studies and Paradigms of Political-Economy: Transmodernity, Decolonial
Thinking, and Global Coloniality. TRANSMODERNITY: Journal of Peripheral Cultural Production of the Luso-Hispanic World, 1
Hayden, R. M. (1998) Bosnia: The Contradictions of ‘Democracy’ without Consent. East European Constitutional Review, 7 (2):
Hobsbawm, E. (2012) Nations and Nationalism since 1780. Canto. 2nd ed. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. doi:
Keough, L. (2016) Worker-Mothers on the Margins of Europe: Gender and Migration between Moldova and Istanbul.
Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.
Lal, D. (2013) Poverty and Progress: Realities and Myths about Global Poverty. Washington, DC: Cato Institute.
Madunagu, B. (1985) Women in Nigeria Today. London, UK: Zed Books.
Madunagu, B. and E. Madunagu (1985) Conceptual Framework and Methodology: Marxism and the Question of Women’s
Liberation. In Badejo, D. L. (ed.) Women in Nigeria Today. London, UK: Zed Books. 30-42.
Madunagu, E. (2008) Peter Ayodele Curtis Joseph. Calabar, Nigeria: CIINSTRID.
Madunagu, E. (1983) Nigeria: The Economy and the People: The Political Economy of State Robbery and its Popular
Democratic Negation. London, UK; Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago: New Beacon Books.
Madunagu, E. (2010) In Lieu of Autobiography. Calabar, Nigeria: Clear Lines Publications.
Madunagu, E. (2006) Understanding Nigeria and the New Imperialism: Essays 2002-2006. Calabar, Nigeria: Clear Lines
Madunagu, E. (1980) The Tragedy of the Nigerian Socialist Movement. Calabar, Nigeria: Centaur Press.
Madunagu, E. (1976) The Philosophy of Violence: Basic Truth. Lagos, Nigeria: Progress Library.
Madunagu, E. (2010) For Our Departed Radical Patriots. Calabar, Nigeria: Clear Lines Publications.
Madunagu, E. (2002): Looking back: 25 Years Ago. Guardian (Nigeria), November 2002,
http://news.biafranigeriaworld.com/archive/ngguardian/2002/nov/07/article26.html Accessed: 23-03-2016.
Madunagu, E. (2003) History and The Tragedy of 1989. Guardian (Nigeria), April 3,
http://web.archive.org/web/20101005150032/http://dawodu.com/madunagu1.htm Accessed: 23-03-2016.
Madunagu, E. (1982) Problems of Socialism: The Nigerian Challenge. London, UK: Zed Books.
Mampilly, Z. and A. Branch (2015) Africa Uprising: Popular Protest and Political Change. London: Zed Books.
Mampilly, Z. (2015) Rebel Rulers: Insurgent Governance and Civilian Life during War. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.
Mampilly, Z. (2015) Zachariah Mampilly on Africa Uprising: Popular Protest and Political Change. Speech given at School of
Public Policy at Central European University, http://spp.ceu.edu/files/zachariah-mampilly-africa-uprising-popular-protest-and-
political-change Accessed: 23-03-2016.
Matusevich, Maxim (2003). No Easy Roe for a Russian Hoe: Ideology and Pragmatism in Nigerian-Soviet Relations. Africa
World Press, Trenton/Asmara.
Mayer, A. (2016) Naija Marxisms: Revolutionary Thought in Nigeria. London, UK: Pluto. Manuscript submitted for publication.
Ness, I. (2015) Southern Insurgency: The Coming of the Global Working Class. London, UK: Pluto.
Oni, O. and B. Onimode (1975) Economic Development of Nigeria: The Socialist Alternative. Ibadan, Nigeria: The Nigerian
Academy of Arts, Sciences and Technology.
Onimode, B., S. Mohamed and B. Turpl (1982) Imperialism and Underdevelopment in Nigeria: The Dialectics of Mass Poverty.
London, UK: Zed Press.
Onimode, B. (1990) Coalition for Change. Alternative Development Strategies for Africa 1. London, UK: IFFA.
Onimode, B. (1992) A Future for Africa: Beyond the Politics of Adjustment. London, UK: Earthscan Publications.
Polanyi, K. (2001) The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic Origins of Our Time. Boston, MA: Beacon Press.
Pucherova, D. and R. Gafrik (2015) (eds.) Postcolonial Europe? Essays on Post-Communist Literatures and Cultures.
Ansterdam, Netherlands; New York, NY: Brill/Rodopi. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/9789004303850
Robertson, J. (2014) The Revolt Rocking Bosnia. socialistworker.org, February 11, http://socialistworker.org/2014/02/11/the-
revolt-rocking-bosnia Accessed: 23-03-2016.
Rodney, W. (2012) How Europe Underdeveloped Africa. Cape Town, South Africa: Pambazuka Press.
Szalai, J. (2015) Disquieted relations: West meeting East in contemporary sociological research. Intersections: East European
Journal of Society and Politics, 1 (2): 12-37. http://dx.doi.org/10.17356/ieejsp.v1i2.73
Tamas, G. M (2015) The Meaning of the Refugee Crisis. openDemocracy, September 2015,
https://www.opendemocracy.net/can-europe-make-it/g-m-tam%C3%A1s/meaning-of-refugee-crisis Accessed: 23-03-2016.
Tlostanova, M. (2015) Can the Post-Soviet Think? On Coloniality of Knowledge, External Imperial, and Double Colonial
Difference. Intersections: East European Journal of Society and Politics. 1 (2): 50. doi:
Toyo, E. (1975) Marks i Keynes - Analiza porównawcza metodologii makroekonomicznej (Marx and Keynes: An Analysis of
Their Methodologies in Macroeconomics). Warsaw, Ploland: Tlumaczyl Bartlomiej Kaminski.
Toyo, E. (n.d.): Primary Accumulation and Development Strategy in a Neo-Colonial Economy: A Critique of Dependence
Theory and its Implications. Unpublished manuscript. Calabar, Nigeria.
Werbner, P. (2014) The Making of an African Working Class: Politics, Law, and Cultural Protest in the Manual Workers’ Union
of Botswana. London, UK: Pluto.
Winder, S. (2013) Danubia: A Personal History of Habsburg Europe. Oxford, UK: Picador. 5-6.
Zeilig, L. (2015) Lumumba, Africa’s Lost Leader. London, UK: Haus Publishing.
Zeilig, L. (2002) Class Struggle and Resistance in Africa. Chicago, IL: Haymarket Books.
Zeilig, L. and M. Fanon-Mendes-France (2014) Frantz Fanon: Voices of Liberation. London, UK: HSRC Press.
Zeilig, L. (2011) Revolt and Protest: Student Politics and Activism in Sub-Saharan Africa. London, UK: I.B. Tauris.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication, with the work three months after publication simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal. This acknowledgement is not automatic, it should be asked from the editors and can usually be obtained one year after its first publication in the journal.