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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Developing Charisma: Nkrumah as a 'Cargo' Benefactor in Ghana
Author:Iijima, Michio
Periodical:African Study Monographs
Geographic term:Ghana
Politics and Government
About person:Francis Nwia Kofie Nkrumah (1909-1972)ISNI
External link:https://jambo.africa.kyoto-u.ac.jp/kiroku/asm_normal/abstracts/pdf/19-4/171-185.pdf
Abstract:The charisma and performance of Kwame Nkrumah, father figure in the Gold Coast and Ghana, resembles the style of prophets of African Independent Churches. Like the latter, Nkrumah was a charismatic leader who appeared in a transitional period. Like the prophets, Nkrumah provided a new moral guideline revising or replacing conventional values, a vision for a better world, promises to contribute in material terms to people's welfare, psychological 'healing' and security, and the capability to realize what believers really wanted. Although Nkrumah was a political and not a religious leader, he effectively used Christian-derived symbols and chant-like slogans in the Convention People's Party (CPP) election campaigns in the 1950s. The masses supported the CPP's economic policies, especially in the 1950s, not simply because of their content but because it was the charismatic Nkrumah who introduced them and promised cargo-like rewards. Once Nkrumah's charisma faded, he transformed his authority into a 'legal-rational' one. Consequently, he needed to build his political religion, Nkrumaism, in order to maintain his regime and strengthen his legitimacy. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum.