politics of Postcolonial Africa final paper

politics of Postcolonial Africa Guidelines for the Final Paper

As mentioned in the Updated Syllabus, we decided to adopt a final paper as opposed to a final exam.

This final paper can be submitted either as a ‘personal’ assignment or as a group of two.

However, we would appreciate it if, in the case of the latter, both students will contribute equally to the paper.

What we are looking for:

  • A good research question. While we have a list of potential topics below, we do

appreciate curiosity and writing a paper that is interesting to you! As such, please

send either to Dr. Koren or Alex Klein your topic & research question. We’ll help 

guide you in the beginning process.

  • The Structure of your paper should be as follows:

o An introduction and an empirical puzzle. This should present, in short, the

topic of the paper and why your research question is important.

o Research question / Assumption

o A General Background

o Your research – can be in the form of an argument or a comparison. If you

want to do something more unique (policy proposal, etc.), please contact us


o A conclusion that recaps your research and looks back at the research


  • One thing that we appreciate is if the different ‘parts’ of your paper ‘are in sync.’ This

helps make the paper – ‘focused.’ What we through ‘in sync’ is that all parts of the

paper relate to one another and that there is a clear line from beginning to end.


  • Due date: TBD
  • No more than 7 pages (excluding front page and bibliography). However, having it

shorter than 7 pages isn’t an issue. We’ve seen brilliant papers that were 5 pages –

so use how much space you need up until 7 pages.

  • Spacing: 1.5.
  • As usual, it is essential to cite all information in an academic manner. A good

program that can help you cite properly is Zotero which is an open-source program

for Windows, macOS, and Linux that can help you (there is even a plug-in for Word).

We expect the paper to be submitted via Moodle. And as always, if you have questions, don’t hesitate to contact either Dr. Koren or me.

Potential Topics:

  • The Structure of the Libyan Society: Local and Global Aspects.
  • Tribal communities in Africa and Globalization: How does Globalization impact Tribal Communities in Africa (with a case-study).
  • The Nation-state model in Africa: What is it derived from?
  • Identity and culture: Main Components for a State building in Africa?
  • Sudan’s Social fabric: what is it built from?
  • The role of Sufi orders in Senegalese politics.
  • The role of IGAD in East Africa.
  • The implications of the Kenyan-Somalian conflict (find a field that interests you).
  • The differences between States under various types of colonialism (Compare different countries? Ideologies, justifications, results).
  • Toward a New Definition of Africa.
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