Politics, Patronage and the State in Zimbabwe - Jocelyn Alexander, JoAnn McGregor and Blessing-Miles Tendi [eds]


This book, focusing on the historical continuities and discontinuities in ZANU PF and the opposition MDC, the divisions and contradictions in these parties, the politics and strategies of accumulation and control by Zimbabwe's elites as well as transformations in governance and state institutions in the post-2000 period, will profoundly change readers' understanding of post-2000 Zimbabwe and the post-colonial African state in general. The chapters are all grounded in empirical evidence that convincingly challenges many of the widely held views about the Zimbabwe crisis.

James Muzondidya, Research Manager, Zimbabwe Institute

This book is a welcome addition to a new genre of relatively more objective and less one-sided but critical analyses of the Zimbabwean state and politics. In particular, it provides a belated recognition and analysis of the transformation of socio-economic structures and state-society relations since the mid-2000s, and examines Zimbabwe's politics from a political economy perspective. It should be a welcome read for most scholars, political commentators, policy analysts and media pundits alike.

Sam Moyo, African Institute for Agrarian Studies, Harare

In this important, deeply nuanced collection, a range of scholars of Zimbabwe bring together fine-grained analyses of crisis-related transformations in state institutions, political economies and the practices of politics. The historically grounded and empirically rich contributions address in new ways familiar themes in African politics such as authority, politics, patronage, violence, legitimacy, and accumulation. This is a necessary and compelling addition to the established body of literature on Zimbabwe itself, and equally a sophisticated counter-point to the limitations of much scholarship on politics and states in Africa. Indispensable reading.

Amanda Hammar, Centre of African Studies, Copenhagen University

For those who might characterize ZANU-PF as a waning liberation war party, this collection refutes such views by examining the extensive patronage networks deployed within the fabric of the Zimbabwean state and society and the limits of political resistance against such networks. No other collection on Zimbabwe's recent past provides such in-depth evidence and interview-based research as found in this volume. Required reading for those who wish to better understand ZANU-PF's continued hold on state power and the challenges facing future opposition politics.

Timothy Scarnecchia, Kent State University


(Page numbers used in the orginal journal are in brackets and should be used in citations.)

Introduction: Politics, Patronage and Violence in Zimbabwe
Jocelyn Alexander and JoAnn McGregor (749) 1

Transformations to State Institutions and ZANU(PF)
'Rebels' and 'Good Boys': Patronage, Intimidation and Resistance in
Zimbabwe's Attorney General's Office after 2000
Susanne Verheul 765

Surveillance and the City: Patronage, Power-Sharing and the Politics of
Urban Control in Zimbabwe
JoAnn McGregor 783

Militarisation and State Institutions: 'Professionals' and 'Soldiers' inside the
Zimbabwe Prison Service
Jocelyn Alexander 807

Ideology, Civilian Authority and the Zimbabwean Military
Blessing-Miles Tendi 829

The Cultural Politics of Opposition
Electoral Politics and a Farm Workers' Struggle in Zimbabwe (1999 – 2000)
Blair Rutherford 845

The 'Hardcore' Student Activist: The Zimbabwe National Students Union
(ZINASU), State Violence, and Frustrated Masculinity, 2000 – 2008
Dan Hodgkinson 863

Ndira's Wake: Politics, Memory and Mobility among the Youth of
Mabvuku-Tafara, Harare
Sam Wilkins 885

Testing Ties: Opposition and Power-Sharing Negotiations in Zimbabwe
Thys Hoekman 903

Patronage Economies
The Political Economy of Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining in Central
Showers Mawowa 921

The Role of Politics and State Practices in Shaping Rural Differentiation:
A Study of Resettled Small-Scale Farmers in South-Eastern Zimbabwe
Phillan Zamchiya 937

Understanding the 2013 Elections
The MDC-T's (Un)Seeing Eye in Zimbabwe's 2013 Harmonised Elections:
A Technical Knockout
Phillan Zamchiya 955

Robert Mugabe's 2013 Presidential Election Campaign
Blessing-Miles Tendi 963

The 2013 Elections in Zimbabwe: The End of an Era
Brian Raftopoulos 971

Review Article
Legal Pluralism in Post-War Mozambique
Helene Maria Kyed 989

Book Reviews
Thomas Blom Hansen, Melancholia of Freedom: Social Life in an Indian
Township in South Africa

Matlapeng Molomo, Democratic Deficit in the Parliament of Botswana

Ørnulf Gulbrandsen, The State and the Social: State Formation in Botswana
and Its Precolonial and Colonial Genealogies
(Reviewed by NEIL PARSONS) 1000

William Beinart and Luvuyo Wotshela, Prickly Pear: The Social History of a
Plant in the Eastern Cape
(Reviewed by BRETT M. BENNETT) 1002

Randolph Vigne, Thomas Pringle: South African Pioneer,
Poet & Abolitionist
(Reviewed by C.J. DRIVER)