Wells College

Political Science 268

Comparative Governments and Politics: Cases of Predominantly Black Nations

Spring 2003



Instructor: Tukumbi Lumumba-Kasongo


108 Cleveland Hall

Office Hours:

Monday, 11:00AM.-12:00 Noon

Tuesday, 11:00A.M.-12:00 Noon

Thursday, 2:00P.M.-5: 00 P.M.


Required Texts



Tukumbi Lumumba-Kasongo, The Rise of Multipartyism and Democracy in the Context of Contemporary Global Change: the Case of Africa, Westernport, Connecticut: Praeger, 1998.


Course Description


In this course, we will study the structures, ideologies, policies, and political behaviors and culture of the states, which have been historically organized and ran by the predominantly Black people. Using comparative and historical approaches, the discussion will focus on how these states were created; how they have been struggling to survive, and how they have been reproducing themselves. In the reproducing process, we will study the nature of the regimes, their relations with social classes, and with international political actors. The issues such as culture, democracy and democratic process, ethnicity, gender inequality, militarism, national policy base, and women, will be critically discussed both on the case-by-case perspective and also comparatively. The geo-political location of these states and countries will also be dealt with.


Predominantly Black nations are described on historical, cultural and ethnic base. All countries with largest African population and people of the African descent are classified as predominantly Black nations. Thus, specific cases are drawn from Africa, Central and South America, and the Caribbean countries, which include the Anglophone, Dutch, Francophone, and Lusophone speaking people.





Attendance and active participation in all class activities are required. They will count for 10 % of the total grade.


Any unjustifiable absence will be penalized.


A mid-term exam will be given on March 13, 2003. It will count for 20 % of the total grade.


First written assignment


Each student will write a paper on "a Comparison of the political systems between Hati and Ghana after they gained their political independence from France and the United Kingdom respectively." Specific issues to focus on are: the nature of the political institutions, the role of political parties, the electoral process, the significance of the elections in policymaking, the role of women in the struggle for power and political mobilization, culture and the ethnicity. The length of the paper is 12 and 14 pages typed double-spaced including footnotes. The paper must have between 8 and 15 references (published books and articles). This assignment will be counted for 25% of the total grade. The due date for the paper is March 6.


The second written assignment:


"Using the current constitutions and the interpretations of the National Constitutional and the National Electoral Commissions in Algeria, Barbados, Martinique, and Jamaica, examine how the issues of citizenship, national sovereignty, women's candidates in all the elections, the president term and age limits, and monetary contributions to the campaigns are articulated? And what are the implications of such articulations for the promotion of democracy and political stability in those countries?"


The length of the paper is between 12 and 15 pages typed double-spaced including footnotes. The paper must have between 8 and 16 references (published books and artcles). It is due on April 17, 2003. It will count for 25% of the total grade.


The final exam will be given on May. It will be counted for 20% of the total grade.