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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:'A Showcase for Experiments': Local Government Reforms in Colonial Tanzania, 1940s and 1950s
Author:Eckert, AndreasISNI
Periodical:Afrika Spectrum
Geographic terms:Tanzania
Great Britain
local government reform
History and Exploration
Politics and Government
Abstract:This article historicizes the current debates about decentralization and 'good local government' on the basis of a concrete example: the local government reforms in two areas - Sukumaland and Kilimanjaro - of colonial Tanzania (then British Tanganyika) after World War II. The late colonial period, characterized by permanent experiments and considerable amorphousness in local administration, can be seen as the first phase of a process which started in the 1940s, continued after independence and is still relevant today, a process influenced by ongoing but often inconsistent and rapidly changing efforts of decentralization on the part of the rulers. Since the late 1940s, the local population in various areas of Tanzania had to realize that despite different rulers, programmes and concepts, local government never was autonomous and always remained the long arm of the central government. The conflicts between nominal participation in self-government and administrative control 'from above' were never solved. Bibliogr., ref., sum. in English, French and German.